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Posted by Andy Brown on 16 May 2011
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Comparison of the Two Storage Methods
Before we compare relational databases and the UDM (Unified Dimensional Model), we need to learn some terminology.
OLTP and OLAP
Two database terms that you may hear bandied about are OLAP and OLTP:
|Term||Stands for||What it means|
|OLTP||On-line Transaction Processing||This is the term for a standard relational database used for processing day-to-day transactions (hence the name!).|
|OLAP||On-line Analytical Processing||The term for analysing data accumulated to spot trends and produce high-level reports. SQL Server Analysis Services used to be called OLAP Services.|
A Diagram Showing OLAP versus OLTP
The diagram below shows how the two types of storage structure are typically used:
Debbie Database and Andy Analyst
Typically data in the UDM is extracted from a companyâ€™s relational database, although it can also come from Excel spreadsheets, Oracle databases and many other courses.
To understand the reasoning behind Analysis Services, it helps to imagine that Debbie Database and Andy Analyst never speak to each other, and that Andy Analyst has no rights to make any changes to Debbieâ€™s database.