A Short Guide To Installing MDS 2012

Before I can talk about using MDS (Master Data Services), I feel a small responsibility to help you get MDS up and running. Although MDS has been available since SQL Server 2008 R2, the method of installation has changed from the use of a separate installer file (.msi) to be baked into the installation wizard of SQL Server itself. . Fortunately, that change has been to make it easier. However, I will focus on the SQL Server 2012 installation here.

If you did not install all Shared Features, you may want to reinsert your SQL installation disk and step through the screens until you reach the Feature Selection screen as shown in the following figure. If the Master Data Services option is already selected, that means that you previously installed MDS as part of your current SQL Server installation. If it is not selected, you must select this Shared Feature and then proceed through the rest of the installation screens to add the necessary bits to your server.

After MDS has been installed, you must configure it. To do this, open the Master Data Services Configure Manager. You can find this application in the Microsoft SQL Server 2010 folder under the Master Data Services folder. Note, before you can run MDS Configuration, a check for prerequisites is made on the machine. MDS requires Windows PowerShell as well as Internet Information Services. In fact, if IIS is not installed, selecting MDS during the SQL install may not install MDS correctly and you will be prompted to reinstall it.

Assuming that your machine has all of the necessary prerequisites, you can proceed to the next step. The configuration manager consists of two pages of properties. The first page is the Database Configuration. Just like DQS (Data Quality Services) you must select or create a MDS database that MDS can use for its working area. To do this, you must define the database instance and the specific database to be used for Master Data Services. For now, we can leave the other System Settings at their default values.

The second page of the configuration manager prompts you to create the web site to be used with MDS (which is why you need IIS on the machine you are running MDS. You must also identify the database created on the first page of the configuration manager. Finally, you choose whether you want to integration your MDS installation with Data Quality Services (DQS). This feature only exists in SQL Server 2012 because DQS is new to SQL Server 2012.

At this point, you should be able to start up MDS. The main screen shown below adds a feature in 2012 that did not exist in the 2008 R2 version, the ability to use an Add-in for Microsoft Excel to help you load and administer your data.

WOW, it sure seems like Microsoft Excel is getting used throughout more and more of the Microsoft BI stack. First PowerPivot and Power View, then the tabular model in SSAS and now MDS. If you never took the time to learn Excel because you thought you were a SQL guru and did not need Excel, perhaps now is the time to brush up on your Excel knowledge.

Well, I going to stop here for this week so you can get MDS set up on your machine. Besides, it is Labor Day weekend and most of my United States readers probably have better things to do this weekend.

C’ya next time.


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