Thursday, 19 April 2012

Cube, Fact Table, Dimension Table

Q : What is Cube ?
A cube is a set of related measures and dimensions that is used to analyze data. A Cube is the primary storage mechanism for SSAS data. It consists of at least one fact table and many dimension tables. The rows in these tables have a key relationship to each other.

Q : What is fact table ?
A fact table is the center table surrounded by a dimension tables. All the dimension tables directly or indirectly connected with the fact table.
A fact table contains foreign keys to relate the rows in the fact table to the dimension table rows and facts. Facts are key performance indicators, for example net sales dollar, net sales unit, etc. Facts are usually numeric and additive.

Q : What is a dimension table ?

Dimension table consists of one or more source tables. Dimension tables have three types of columns. The first is the original primary key for each row. The second is a new primary key (Or surrogate key) for each row. This key is used to guarantee uniqueness, because the original data could come from multiple sources. The third is a column for each attribute that describes each dimensional value.


  1. Facts tables play a very dynamic role in the data warehouses or data marts because they consist of the measurements, metrics or facts of a business process e.g., sales revenue by month by product. Fact tables usually contain large numbers of rows, sometimes in the hundreds of millions of records when they contain one or more years of history for a large organization.

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