What is new in Dynamics NAV 5.0 Business Analytics (BA)

A while a go we released Dynamics NAV 5.0 and with that a new version of Business Analytics Basic and Advanced. I want to spend a few lines of text to share what is new in this release and the reasons for these features making it into the product at this time.

First of all the Advanced client is now up to speed with version 2k5 of the Targit release with everything in that. This gives us support for presenting cubes created in SQL Server Analysis Services 2005.

Of other new things i can add gauges as a way of graphically representing KPIs in a trafficlight way. I also add improved integration with SQL Server Reporting Services.

In BA Basic list of new features looks as follows:

  • Ability to apply filters on fact tables
    (Allows customers with large volumes of data to create cubes containing only subsets of data. Filters can be set by the members of any of the dimensions in a cube)
  • Create calculations between virtual cubes
    (Allows for cross cube calculations to be handled by BA Basic. An example would be having a cube with actual figures and one with budget figures. It would be obvious to create a measure reflecting the deviation between the two. This is possible with this feature)
  • Multiple active configurations
    (In previous version one could have only one active configuration. A configuration is made up of a set of cubes, dimensions etc that are implemented in databases with fixed names (BA for MBS Navision 400). This would mean that whenever a given configuration was implemented the database names etc was overwritten by the new content. In this version the database/configuration name is customizable meaning that you can create configurations that can be updated at differing schedules etc. without interfering with each other)
  • Support for named instances of SQL Server It is now possible to have the BA databases and or NAV run on something but the default instance in SQL)
  • Freehand MDX
    (This is the ability to create formulas/calculated members that go beyond what the simplistic calculator will enable inside NAV. This is also something that potentially can break the implementation if syntax is wrong in the statements written. This unleashes the power of the language but with the freedom comes responsibility)

In coming posts I will create examples of the usage of each of these features so stay tuned. If you would like to see one over the other leave a comment and I will try to do this.

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