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Using Extended Field Properties for an Analysis Services Database

New: 5 December 2005

The SQL Server Analysis Services data processing extension supports extended field properties. Extended field properties are properties in addition to the field properties Value and IsMissing that are available on the data source and supported by the data processing extension. Extended properties do not appear in the Datasets pane as part of the field collection for a report dataset. You can include extended field property values in your report by writing expressions that specify them by name using the global Fields collection.

Extended properties include predefined properties and custom properties. Predefined properties are properties common to multiple data sources that are mapped to specific field property names and can be accessed through the global Fields collection by name. Custom properties are defined specific to each data provider and can be accessed through the global Fields collection only through syntax using the extended property name as a string.

When you use the Analysis Services MDX query designer in graphical mode to define your query, a predefined set of cell properties and dimension properties are automatically added to the MDX query. You can only use extended properties that are specifically listed in the MDX query in your report. Depending on your report, you may want to modify the default MDX command text to include other dimension or custom properties defined in the cube. For more information about extended fields available in Analysis Services data sources, see Creating and Using Property Values (MDX).

Extended field properties include predefined properties and data provider-specific properties. Field properties do not appear in the field list in the Datasets window, even though they are in the query built for a dataset; therefore, you cannot drag field properties onto your report layout. Instead, you drag the field onto the report and then change the field's Value property to the property that you want to use.

To refer to an extended property that is not predefined, use the following syntax in an expression:

  • Fields!FieldName("PropertyName")

In most cases, predefined field properties apply to measures, levels, or dimensions. A predefined field property must have a corresponding value stored in the Analysis Services data source. If a value does not exist, or if you specify a measure-only field property on a level (for example), the property returns a null value.

You can use either of the following syntaxes to refer to a predefined property from an expression:

  • Fields!FieldName.PropertyName
  • Fields!FieldName("PropertyName")

The following table provides a list of predefined field properties that you can use.

Property Type Description or expected value

Value

Object

Specifies the data value of the field.

IsMissing

Boolean

Indicates whether the field was found in the resulting data set.

UniqueName

String

Returns the fully qualified name of a level. For example, the UniqueName value for an employee might be [Employee].[Employee Department].[Department].&[Sales].&[North American Sales Manager].&[272].

BackgroundColor

String

Returns the background color defined in the database for the field.

Color

String

Returns the foreground color defined in the database for the item.

FontFamily

String

Returns the name of the font defined in the database for the item.

FontSize

String

Returns the point size of the font defined in the database for the item.

FontWeight

String

Returns the weight of the font defined in the database for the item.

FontStyle

String

Returns the style of the font defined in the database for the item.

TextDecoration

String

Returns special text formatting defined in the database for the item.

FormattedValue

String

Returns a formatted value for a measure or key figure. For example, the FormattedValue property for Sales Amount Quota returns a currency format like $1,124,400.00.

Key

Object

Returns the key for a level.

LevelNumber

Integer

For parent-child hierarchies, returns the level or dimension number.

ParentUniqueName

String

For parent-child hierarchies, returns a fully qualified name of the parent level.

Predefined field properties do appear in IntelliSense in the expression editor when you enter the syntax for a field. For more information, see Using Global Collections in Expressions (Reporting Services).

ms156477.note(en-US,SQL.90).gifNote:
Values exist for these extended field properties only if the data source (for example, the Analysis Services cube) provides these values when your report runs and retrieves the data for its datasets. You can then refer to those field property values from any expression using the syntax described below. However, because these fields are specific to this data provider, changes that you make to these values are not saved with the report definition.

Example Extended Properties

To illustrate extended properties, the following MDX query and result set include several member properties available from a dimension attribute defined for a cube. The member properties included are MEMBER_CAPTION, UNIQUENAME, Properties("Day Name"), MEMBER_VALUE, PARENT_UNIQUE_NAME, and MEMBER_KEY.

This MDX query runs against the the AdventureWorks cube in the AdventureWorks DW database shipped with the AdventureWorks Sample Databases.

WITH MEMBER [Measures].[DateCaption] 
      AS '[Date].[Date].CURRENTMEMBER.MEMBER_CAPTION' 
   MEMBER [Measures].[DateUniqueName] 
      AS '[Date].[Date].CURRENTMEMBER.UNIQUENAME' 
   MEMBER [Measures].[DateDayName] 
      AS '[Date].[Date].Properties("Day Name")' 
   MEMBER [Measures].[DateValueinOriginalDatatype] 
      AS '[Date].[Date].CURRENTMEMBER.MEMBER_VALUE' 
   MEMBER [Measures].[DateParentUniqueName] 
      AS '[Date].[Date].CURRENTMEMBER.PARENT_UNIQUE_NAME' 
   MEMBER [Measures].[DateMemberKeyinOriginalDatatype] 
      AS '[Date].[Date].CURRENTMEMBER.MEMBER_KEY' 
SELECT {
   [Measures].[DateCaption], 
   [Measures].[DateUniqueName], 
   [Measures].[DateDayName], 
   [Measures].[DateValueinOriginalDatatype],
   [Measures].[DateParentUniqueName],
   [Measures].[DateMemberKeyinOriginalDatatype]
   } ON COLUMNS , [Date].[Date].ALLMEMBERS ON ROWS 
FROM [Adventure Works]

When you run this query in an MDX query pane, you get a result set with 1158 rows. The first four rows are shown in the table below.

DateCaption DateUniqueName DateDayName DateValueinOriginalDatatype DateParentUniqueName DateMemberKeyinOriginalDatatype

All Periods

[Date].[Date].[All Periods]

(null)

(null)

(null)

0

1-Jul-01

[Date].[Date].&[1]

Sunday

7/1/2001

[Date].[Date].[All Periods]

1

2-Jul-01

[Date].[Date].&[2]

Monday

7/2/2001

[Date].[Date].[All Periods]

2

3-Jul-01

[Date].[Date].&[3]

7/3/2001

[Date].[Date].[All Periods]

3

Default MDX queries built using the MDX Query Designer in graphical mode only include MEMBER_CAPTION and UNIQUENAME for dimension properties. By default, these values always are data type String.

If you need a member property in its original data type, you can include an additional property MEMBER_VALUE by modifying the default MDX statement in the generic query designer. In the following simple MDX statement, MEMBER_VALUE has been added to the list of dimension properties to retrieve.

SELECT NON EMPTY {[Measures].[Order Count]} ON COLUMNS, 
NON EMPTY { ([Date].[Month of Year].[Month of Year] ) } 
DIMENSION PROPERTIES 
  MEMBER_CAPTION, MEMBER_UNIQUE_NAME, MEMBER_VALUE ON ROWS 
FROM [Adventure Works]
CELL PROPERTIES 
  VALUE, BACK_COLOR, FORE_COLOR, 
  FORMATTED_VALUE, FORMAT_STRING, 
  FONT_NAME, FONT_SIZE, FONT_FLAGS

The first four rows of the result in the MDX Results pane appear in the following table.

Month of Year Order Count

January

2,481

February

2,684

March

2,749

April

2,739

Even though the properties are part of the MDX select statement, they do not appear in the result set columns. Nevertheless, the data is available for a report using the extended properties feature. In an MDX query result pane in SQL Server Management Studio, you can double-click on the cell and see the cell property values if they are set in the cube. If you double-click on the first Order Count cell that contains 1,379, you will see a pop-up window with the following cell properties:

Property Value

CellOrdinal

0

VALUE

2481

BACK_COLOR

(null)

FORE_COLOR

(null)

FORMATTED_VALUE

2,481

FORMAT_STRING

#,#

FONT_NAME

(null)

FONT_SIZE

(null)

FONT_FLAGS

(null)

If you create a report dataset with this query and bind the dataset to a table, you can see the default VALUE property for a field, for example, =Fields!Month_of_Year!Value. If you set this expression as the sort expression for the table, your results will be to sort the table alphabetically by month because the Value field defaults to a String data type. To sort the table in so that the months are in the order they occur in the year with January first and December last, use the following expression:

=Fields!Month_of_Year("MEMBER_VALUE")

This sorts the value of the field in its original integer data type from the data source.

Release History

12 December 2006

New content:
  • Added MEMBER_VALUE example.

14 April 2006

Changed content:
  • Added examples; updated content.
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