I’ve just come across SqlSpec from Elasoft (http://www.elsasoft.org/) a tool that can create documentation for Analysis Services databases. You can see some sample output here:

I’ve downloaded it and given it a quick try, and it seems to do the job pretty well. This is the second documentation tool for SSAS that I’m aware of, the other being BI Documenter. Which one is better? Well I guess it depends on what you want to do since the two tools support different data sources and have slightly different features (http://www.elsasoft.org/compare.htm vs http://www.bidocumenter.com/Public/Features.aspx). You can see sample output for BI Documenter here:

You pays your money, you takes your choice…

10 responses

  1. Chris,
    There is one more documentation tool that works with SSAS : xSQL documenter. I just found about them 2 or 3 days ago.
    There is also free SqlASDoc. It is not as powerful, but it is free.
    And BIDS Helper also can generate out some documentation – some of it is very useful and not available in commercial documentators.
    I do not know which one is better…
    Vidas Matelis
    Vidas Matelis

  2. I have used BI Documenter a few times and it isn\’t too bad.  It covers SSIS and SSRS also.  I didn\’t realize that SqlSpec did SSAS also.  I had demoed their product awhile back and I really liked the dependancy graphs.  I see that it does this for SSAS also, so that is really nice.  It is really helpful to be able to show the business users how everything is related and what could potentially be impacted if a change is made.  They also provide free licenses for database community contributors and MVPs along with some non-profit organizations.  I will have to check out the other two that Vidas mentioned, haven\’t heard of them yet.

  3. Hmm, I just looked at the website for xSQL documenter and it looks like the same product as SqlSpec. Perhaps its licensed by different companies in different parts of the world?

  4. Chris,
    You are totaly right. This is the same product. SQLSpec is original one and they have a licence agreement with xSQL. I just got reply about this from SQLSpec.

  5. I checked out sqlSpec and liked it except for the lack of documentation on calculated members – all it had was a dump of the calc script which is not very good for most end users.  I say had because after exchanging a few e-mail the developer (Jesse) has added a feature to a beta version that allows you to embed XML comments in the calc script.  The tool parses the script and picks up comments associated with calculated measures and places them in a table on the mdxScript page and in a table on the page for the associated measure group.  Since the latter is the most common function it allows users to just go to the measure group page and see the definitions of the associated calculated measures.  My thanks to Jesse for this welcome addition.

  6. Just tried sqlSpec beta 2008 it has a useful addition where for a cube it will give you the table dependencies. Before you needed to navigate from cube – dimension/measure group – table however now you get a list of tables directly from the cube. Useful when you need to tidy up any mart leftovers

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