What is a Data Warehouse?

In the past, data warehouse was used by only the large companies across the globe. That is not the case anymore. Almost all companies whether big or small make use of data warehouse for their day to day functions. A data warehouse is very important for smaller companies especially to help them boost their sales and bring about more revenues into their business.

A data warehouse in simple words is just a piece of information or database. The information that is obtained is about the company, its functions and its activities. This means that the entire transactions of the company, may it be the sales, purchase, payments, receipts anything and everything is included and ends up in a data warehouse. All this information can be obtained with the click of a mouse.

The database that is obtained from a data warehouse is a technical platform or product wherein we can ask real life questions relating to our business. For example – using a data warehouse, you will be able to find out which branch of your company has sold more products and at what price? Companies having various branches can also find out the top salesman in the company and which branch he is currently based. That is the reason why we mentioned earlier that a data warehouse is just a piece of information. One can get any type of information requested without any hassles.

If your company is having only a ‘transaction based data warehouse’, you will not be able to get details such as ‘leading salesman’ from other branches. Transaction based data warehouse is limited to only transactions and not related to the performance of the employees in an organization.

Since there are various types of data warehouse available, it is highly recommended to first check the type of data warehouse that you require for your company. If your company has branches situated everywhere, you will require a different type of data warehouse.

Importance of Data Warehouse in a Business

Every business organization will always search for one of the best tools that can provide them success. Such tools are very important for business and it includes data, finances and not to mention the record of workers working as a team.

Having a data warehouse in a business will mean that the problem of an organization is cut into half. This is a type of software which helps in a business to get the much required success and remain in the competition. The tools of a data warehouse can be accessed very easily. With such easy tools to use, business organizations can build their own data warehouse according to the mode of their business. There are various other reasons why obtaining a data warehouse is beneficial for a business. One of the main reasons is that a data warehouse helps in generating the daily business volume of a company.

With this data, an organization can decide how to move forward with the business strategy. Another important factor of a data warehouse is that it helps in the documentation process where organizations can even get the help of external data which will further help the company in coming up with concrete decisions for their business.

A data warehouse is known to be a one huge data store for business which has time variant, non volatile and integrated collection of data which greatly helps the management’s decision making process. It is a warehouse that helps in facilitating effective querying, report generation and analyzing thereby giving the management all the required information for any crucial decision making.

That is the reason why a data ware house is very important in any business. Infact, a business whether big or small will not be able to function smoothly without the use of a data warehouse.

Basics of a Data Warehouse

A data warehouse is one of the main tools that help in smooth operation in various departments of an organization. It is very important that each and every company whether big or small, has an independent data warehouse.

A data warehouse helps company executives, business analysts and managers of an organization take decisions based on the report procured by the data warehouse. Let us find out the main reasons why a data warehouse is used for in an organization.

1- Validation – Research has proved that almost about 45% of the companies use data warehouse for the purpose of validation. Let us take an example – Let us say that a popular candy bar is having its branches in different parts of the USA. Some customers from a city like New York will buy candy bars on a whim while other customers like those from Denver might not do so. Data storage will record each and every purchase from different stores and create a data.

2- Tactical Reporting – There are 40% of companies using data warehouse for tactical reporting. For example – A salesman of a particular organization might meet Mr. X, a potential client and would like to know what products Mr. X purchased last year. Similarly, he might meet another potential client Mr. Y and find out what Mr. Y purchased last year. They will then make use of the data warehouse to find out the comparison between the two clients. This is what we call tactical reporting.

3- Exploration – Exploration with the help of data warehouse helps companies search for new ideas and knowledge which they might have never heard of before. Use of data mining techniques like association, genetic algorithms, applications and classification which also include market analysis and fraud detection work as important tools. Research has proved that 15% of companies use data warehouse for the purpose of exploration.

Reason why companies prefer data warehouse

When IT (Information Technology) started emerging as one of the biggest inventions in the world of technology, the need for processing power and the improvement of techniques and analytical tools called data warehouse also began to take charge for all the businesses in the world.

The main question asked by many is – What is the need for a data warehouse for any company? Well, the need might not be immediately required, but a data warehouse becomes an important tool whenever a company requires to get information regarding designing, building, maintaining or even retrieving data.

That is to say that data warehousing is a resourceful and organized method to maintain and report scattered data through an organization. Its main duty is to help the management with easy decision making process. Now, for over two decades, the data warehouse has provided unlimited support to many companies and why not? There are plenty of reasons why a company must opt for data warehouse in their organization. Some of the salient features of a data warehouse include collection of data, recording of data, filtration of data and provides all the relevant information to top level management in an organization. One of a simple example that a data warehouse will help is that it helps in providing important information to a concerned employee or employer without the need to stop the continuous production system. This helps in saving a lot of time. Data warehouse helps in providing the entire information to the person who is in control of the software.

Data warehouse actually helps organizations with business and management analysis for meeting various demands of their customers. Data warehouse software was introduced during early 1990s and ever since its launch; the demand for such data warehouse software has been helping companies take instant decisions based on its accuracy.

How to run a business efficiently with Data Warehouse

Starting a business can be very competitive in this current era. At the same time, it is also equally important to acquire the latest technologies for handling the business efficiently. A business in order to run successfully requires the right kind of manpower along with the right kind of software. Therefore, the need for a data warehouse is very important.

Data warehouse administration is considered to be the powerhouse of a business. It is the place where various strategies for decision making along with other knowledge based applications are carried out to help the business face the competitive market.

Through data warehouse, analysts will be able to understand how a business will function in the coming months, along with any potential risks that can occur in the way. Since, they are able to predict all this beforehand; it becomes equally important for the business analysts to take all precautionary measures in order to ensure that the business runs in the right direction without incurring many problems on the way. Managing a data warehouse is not very easy and a business organization will require true professionals who are able to see and visualize the future of the business as the days pass by. Basically the main job of a data warehouse professional is to take care of all the limitations and scope, mainly on what they will use in a warehouse.

Apart from that, they will also take complete charge of adjusting each and every application and make sure that they are able to function properly by giving very accurate results about the market scenario every time. Companies who prefer such data warehouse will definitely have to invest a lot of time to help them ensure that their business is moving in the right direction. There are many companies across the globe who have successfully installed data warehouse along with its application.

Data Warehouse and its applications

What is data warehouse administration all about? Data warehousing began in the early 1990’s which promised change data landscaping for the better. It does make a lot of sense to accumulate all the data together, but the question is will it really help in making sense for our future?

Nobody actually knows how big this kind of market is but it is estimated to generate a gross income of around 5 billion dollars each year. The main duty of a data warehouse is to store data safely for future use. This can be associated with just one computer or in combination with many computers. The data can be stored even in a server for a massive data storage which most companies are required for future use.

You will come across various kinds of data required by a company that needs to be stored for future use such as sales data, salaries data, human resource data, operational data, inventory data etc.

One of the most important advantages about data warehouse is that users are able to access and use data through data warehouse for analysis, reports and decision making. Data stored in a warehouse can help in locating trends, help in dealings and also allow consumers know better regarding the surroundings that a company works with.

There are 2 types of data warehouse, online data warehouse hosting and offline data warehouse. The online data warehouse is also known as a real time data warehouse where the data is updated every second. Offline data warehouse stores data in an offline system from where we will be able to access it. This is practically the easiest kind of data warehouse. It can be upgraded on a daily, weekly or on a monthly basis. The entire data gets saved in a completely amalgamated format, where everyone can get a chance to access.

Data Warehouse Administration requires SQL for implementing

In order to develop a good knowledge regarding data warehouse administration the first thing that needs to be found out is the type of work that is being handled by the person doing the job. The main features that are required to implement business intelligence are MS SSIS, the SQL server database engine, MS SSRS and MS SSAS.

A data warehouse is a complete set of data which is designed and structured for further decision making, querying, knowledge discovery and data mining. A data warehouse consists of one or more than one data marts. The data in data marts are bought from an online transaction system or from any other comma separated files or flat files. The data is initially brought from its source system to a staging environment called extraction. Here the data is completely cleansed and brought into a format which is common all over the data warehouse. This is known as transformation. The data that is transferred from the staging area towards the mart are known as the ETL stage. With the help of MS technology, this is conducted by using SSIS.

Users are able to query the data from data mart with the help of a reporting environment and then read either through MS Excel or use the MS SQL server 2008 reporting services. It would greatly help a data warehouse expert learn some more about database administration along with some basic system administration concepts. Once a data warehouse expert becomes successful, they will be able to design, develop, gather requirements and even arrange a business intelligence solution by making use of the MS BI Tool stack of SSAS, SSRS and SSIS. This is exactly what a professional data warehouse hosting do. To implement this, they will have to find a solution and a passion and also like SQL.

Data Warehouse Administration for storing data

Data warehouse administration is a type of software that is used for building, designing, improving and managing the data of electronically collected data. Without this kind of software, it becomes difficult for collecting data from a warehouse.

This software helps facilitate the construction of data dictionary that provides utilities to manage Meta data. The software helps in improving the overall performance of a warehouse. As compared to the other commonly operated system, which usually supports ordinary transactions, this software is mainly designed to be used with BI tools or Business Intelligence tools. The software allows users note the shelf lives and lot numbers. The software also supports the usual models required for data mining such as associations, classifications, prediction and clustering.

The data warehouse is considered to be a very important tool which helps the management in both predicting future as well as seeing historic trends. A data warehouse is defined as a warehouse which stores a lot more than store data, which is considered in many ways as the main heart of the operation process. In order to have this taken effectively, the whole business model and other business activities have to be mapped out in order to show the areas where the data warehouse aims to touch. One of the important points to be taken into consideration is that this analysis will show the data flow and workflow and how people tend working together and meet.

For many, data warehouse hosting has grown organically without a unifying and coherent structure which comes out during the analysis process. Once the business is defined, the data model of the system is developed. This is known as a pre coding stage, whereby the data model gets outlined and depicts on the paper as to how the data can be used, how different entities communicate and how the transactions flow over the enterprise.

Web Host SoftLayer Partners with OS Nexus to Launch Storage Servers

Web hosting provider SoftLayer Technologies (www.softlayer.com) announced on Tuesday it has partnered with OS Nexus (www.osnexus.com) to launch QuantaStor Storage Servers.
The new servers provide dedicated mass storage appliances with high level of cost-effectiveness, control, and scalability, according to the press release.
They are ideal for a range of high performance storage solutions, including private cloud storage, eliminating CAPEX requirements that often hinder deployments.
QuantaStor Storage Servers offer the OS NEXUS QuantaStor Storage Appliance OS, the industry’s first virtual storage solution designed for global manageability, on SoftLayer Mass Storage dedicated servers.
The SAN + NAS storage system offers a range of advanced storage features including thin-provisioning, and remote-replication, making it well suited for a broad set of applications including VM application deployments, virtual desktops, as well as web and application servers.
“When you need massive storage, having the right amount is just one part of the equation,” said Nathan Day, chief scientist for SoftLayer. “The more storage you have, the more you need location independence, global access, and robust tools to manage it. The QuantaStor Storage Server provides the perfect combination of performance economics, scalability and manageability that our customers deserve.”
Other key features include hard disk or solid state drive support, storage management through a simplified interface, iSCSI support for 1GbE and 10GbE client support for Windows XP, 7, 2003 Server, 2008 Server, VMware ESX/ESXi, Windows Hyper-V; Macintosh OS X, XenServer 5.x, and Linux (all major distributions, open-iSCSI, and hardware initiators), NFSv3 and NFSv4 support, and thin provisioning/over provisioning to allocate volumes without having to dedicate storage until needed.
QuantaStor Mass Storage Servers starts at $1,039 per month for up to 12 drives and $1,139 per month for up to 24 drives.

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Web Host SoftLayer Partners with OS Nexus to Launch Storage Servers

Web Host Hosting Ireland Offers Free iPhone App

Web hosting provider Hosting Ireland (www.hostingireland.ie) announced on Wednesday that it has launched its free iPhone app. According to the web host, the app will give existing and new customers the ability to access various domain and hosting services while on the go.
This news comes a few weeks after Hosting Ireland launched its online backup service CloudBox.
Hosting Ireland says its app will allow customers to search, check and buy domains. According to the press release, it is the first iPhone app for the Irish domain and hosting market.
Customers can view active products and services, pay invoices, and check historical billing information. Customers are also able to view, edit and update contract details.
Support tickets can be submitted directly from the app and customers can reach Hosting Ireland’s customer support via a direct dial from the app, according to the press release.
The mobile app gives access to the Whois as well, according to Hosting Ireland.
“The Hosting Ireland iPhone app is a further demonstration of our commitment to our valued customers. We are constantly looking at ways of making life easier for our clients and also of encouraging potential new customers to try out our market leading products and services,” Jonathan Bate managing director of Hosting Ireland said in a statement. “Life is getting busier and we feel that the app will be a welcome tool for the online community.”
Hosting Ireland says it developed its app in house. The app was designed for web developers, programmers, resellers and clients with a portfolio of sites to manage and monitor their services remotely.
At the end of August, New Zealand web hosting provider FlexiHost launched a domain lookup and registration iPhone app.

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Web Host Hosting Ireland Offers Free iPhone App