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Defining Levels

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Modified on Fri, 07 Mar 2014 06:27 PM Categorized as Dimensions
Click to return to: Documentation | Defining Dimensions


Overview

This article shows how to add, configure, and remove the levels of a standard dimension using the Dimension Hierarchy Explorer.

Adding a dimension level

To add a new level to your dimension:

  1. Select the Level Definition tab of the Standard Dimension Designer.
  2. Click the Add Level button at the top of the Dimension Hierarchy Explorer in the Sidebar. The Dimension Level Definition Wizard is displayed.
    The Add Level button.
    Alternatively, select a level in the Dimension Hierarchy Explorer, then click its menu icon. From the resulting menu, you can choose to add a new level either before or after the selected level (in terms of its position in the hierarchy). The Dimension Level Definition Wizard will be displayed.
    The Level menu.
  3. In the first step of the Dimension Level Definition Wizard, select a virtual table from the grid, then click Next.
    Selecting a virtual table in the Dimension Level Definition Wizard.
    Note: Only standard and manual virtual tables will appear in the grid. Virtual tables based on functions or stored procedures cannot be used to define a dimension level.

  4. In the second step of the Dimension Level Definition Wizard, choose the desired columns from your virtual table by clicking the appropriate check boxes in the Include grid column. You should select at least:
    • One or more columns for linking (&ie; joining) this level to an existing, parent level in your dimension.
    • One or more columns to form a primary key for this level.
    • A column to serve as the display name for this level.
      Selecting virtual table columns for the level.
  5. Click Finish. The following occurs:
    • A new level is added to the Dimension Hierarchy Explorer in the Sidebar and the new level is selected in the hierarchy.
    • The Standard Dimension Designer is displayed in the content area of Dundas Dashboard and shows the Level Definition tab. The Level Definition tab lets you configure the dimension level that is currently selected in the Dimension Hierarchy Explorer.

Next, you must configure the newly added dimension level.

The Standard Dimension Designer showing a newly added (but unconfigured) dimension level.

The Standard Dimension Designer showing a newly added (but unconfigured) dimension level.


Configuring a dimension level

To configure a dimension level:

  1. Select the level you want to configure in the Dimension Hierarchy Explorer. The Level Definition tab of the Standard Dimension Designer displays the settings for the selected level.
  2. Enter a new name for your level in the Level name box. The level name will be updated automatically in the Dimension Hierarchy Explorer.
    Changing the name of the dimension level.
  3. The virtual table and columns that you selected from the Dimension Level Definition Wizard are shown in the Base virtual table section of the tab. If you want to change the base virtual table, click the Modify this level's table and columns button to open the Dimension Level Definition Wizard, which lets you choose a new virtual table or select different virtual table columns.
  4. In the Base virtual table grid, choose one or more virtual table columns to comprise the key for the level by selecting the corresponding check boxes in the Key grid column. For example, if your level is called Product Item, the key could be a Product ID column. To specify a composite key, you select more than one check box. An example of a composite key is selecting the virtual table columns, State Name and City Name, as the key for a City level. In this case, a composite key is necessary because different US states can have cities with the same name (⪚ Portland, Oregon and Portland, Maine).
  5. The Related columns grid automatically lists the pairs of related columns from the current level and its parent level. Each pair (&ie; grid row) consists of a primary key column from the parent level and a corresponding column from the current level. For performance reasons, these related columns are typically ID type columns.
  6. In the Display name column box, choose a virtual table column to serve as the display name for this level. For example, if your level is called Product Item, a display name column could be Product Name or Product SKU.
  7. In the Unknown member name box, enter the name of a member to use for categorizing data that cannot be slotted into one of the existing level members. By default, this member is named (Unknown). The unknown member name shows up when you preview a KPI that uses this dimension and operates on data records which cannot be categorized by the dimension level. See the Unknown members example.
  8. Use the Default sort order dropdown list to specify how you want the members of this level to be sorted by default. The following options are available:
    • By Name - Sort level members according to their display name column values.
    • By Key - Sort level members according to their primary key column values.
    • User-Defined - This option lets you define your own default sort order by:
      • Reordering your chosen columns (select a grid row, then use the four arrow buttons in the upper-right).
      • Specifying an increasing or decreasing sort order for one or more columns (click inside a Sort column cell to cycle through the available sort order options). Leaving all columns unsorted is invalid and will result in an error during preview. In Dundas Dashboard 5.0.2 or later, you are required to have a sort order on at least one column as shown in the following figure.
        User-Defined sort order.

Note: If you choose to sort the members of your level by display name, the data type of your display name column cannot be text or ntext. These data types do not support sorting and you will receive an error when trying to preview a dimension that uses these data types for sorting.

You have completed the configuration of the dimension level.

The Standard Dimension Designer showing the completed level definition.

The Standard Dimension Designer showing the completed level definition.


Removing a dimension level

To remove a level from a dimension:

  1. In the Dimension Hierarchy Explorer for your dimension, select the level you want to remove.
  2. Click its menu icon. The Level menu is displayed.
    The Level menu.
  3. From the Level menu, choose Delete Level. Click Yes when prompted to confirm the operation. The level is removed from the Dimension Hierarchy Explorer.

Related topics


Click to return to: Documentation | Defining Dimensions

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