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User experience---Powerpivot VS Tabular Model RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello there,

    How you doing, guys? Hope u are doing greatly.

    Currently, i am examining the cons and pros between Powerpivot and tabular model.

    I agree with most people, who listed "Scalabilty", "managibility", Tools...etc to illustarte that Tabular is an enterprise level solution and Powerpivot really meats some needs like Agile BI, self BI.

    But one thing, I am asking why these guys , all famous BI Bloggers, oversight that actually Powerpivot presents a better user experience for end users than tabular model. Why?

    The case could be , eg. I use pivot table in excel to connect tabular cube VS to connect Powerpivot.

    Connecting powerpivot, pivottable reports are as quick as flying--no freeezing at all because it hits data back in local memory. On the othe hand, if pivot table connects to tabular model, it cannot aviod the round trip between excel frontend and the "Tabular Cube SSAS instance".

    Is this a true statement? Curious why no persons mention this drawback when comparing both.


    Derek

    Friday, July 12, 2013 3:54 AM

Answers

  • One of the concerns when to use Tabular Model instead of PowerPivot may be Sharing of the Data. If you have SharePoint, there is no problem as you publish the Excel into SharePoint and multiple persons can utilize PowerPivot for SharePoint to access the data.

    But in case you have no SharePoint farm, that it's harder to operate on the same data and model.

    Related to the drawback of round robin to remote SSAS Tabular instance. This is question of the amount of data being processed. If there is large amount of data, the tabular model scales much better as it allows partitioning. and as a result it can process subset of data much quicker than PowerPivot. In that cases the round robin trip to the remote instance can be insignificant. Also mostly the server machine on which the instance is running is much more powerful than the client workstation.

    Other aspect is data security, where Tabular Model allows define Row Level security.

    But there is other Pro for the PowerPivot - You have an offline version of the data with your excel sheet.

    • Marked as answer by Derek Dai Friday, July 12, 2013 5:03 PM
    Friday, July 12, 2013 7:45 AM

All replies

  • I really like PowerPivot because

    1. As you mention it is fast because of local data

    2. once you are done you can publish the PP Workbook to SharePoint where it is loaded in a SQL Tabular instance.

    3. PowerPivot is very good for rapid prototyping and testing.... BI projects are easy to fail and go wrong. So being quickly able to create and show things helps a lot and improves collaboration between developers and business.

    4. Scales well ... when published on the SharePoint Server.

    5. Great concept to create small subject specific data marts and then publish to end users for SharePoint.

    6. Only Excel is required for modification

    7. New technologies like PowerView enhance the visualization aspect.

    I can't see why would anyone not want PowerPivot + SharePoint :)

    One disadvantage I see is that PowerPivot can lead to lot of workbooks containing same data ... the similarity can be 50%, 60% or even more... with PP there is a risk and chance of duplication of data.

    So if you want to keep data in a central place and are afraid of data ending up in too many excel workbooks, then perhaps you an build a Tabular model using BIDS and then work on it with excel, PerformancePoint or SSRS.


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    • Edited by MSDN Student Friday, July 12, 2013 7:38 AM ggggggggggggggggoooooooooooocccccccccccccccc
    Friday, July 12, 2013 7:28 AM
  • One of the concerns when to use Tabular Model instead of PowerPivot may be Sharing of the Data. If you have SharePoint, there is no problem as you publish the Excel into SharePoint and multiple persons can utilize PowerPivot for SharePoint to access the data.

    But in case you have no SharePoint farm, that it's harder to operate on the same data and model.

    Related to the drawback of round robin to remote SSAS Tabular instance. This is question of the amount of data being processed. If there is large amount of data, the tabular model scales much better as it allows partitioning. and as a result it can process subset of data much quicker than PowerPivot. In that cases the round robin trip to the remote instance can be insignificant. Also mostly the server machine on which the instance is running is much more powerful than the client workstation.

    Other aspect is data security, where Tabular Model allows define Row Level security.

    But there is other Pro for the PowerPivot - You have an offline version of the data with your excel sheet.

    • Marked as answer by Derek Dai Friday, July 12, 2013 5:03 PM
    Friday, July 12, 2013 7:45 AM
  • I agree with all that you posted above.

    However, in term of the large amount of data(Partition processing), row-level security model, interface with AMO, powershell and less than 1 day updating frequency, How does Powerpivot help?

    we have to turn to tabular, an enterprise BI solution.

    Is this fair?

     


    Derek

    Friday, July 12, 2013 5:03 PM
  • Makes Sense!

    Derek

    Friday, July 12, 2013 5:04 PM