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Last modified at 9/14/2015 10:18 AM by Peter Scordamaglia

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This page presents the installation of the PulseBI system.  Following areas are covered:

PulseBI Program

This section describes the installation of the PulseBI engine and it's components.  The PulseBI engine should be installed on a machine that has access to the disk drive where the data files to be loaded into data warehouse will be stored, as well as the access to the SQL Server and SSAS databases.  On the development machine you can install PulseBI, SQL Server, and SSAS on one machine, but you can split them if needed.  PulseBI will come in an archive, and you will simply extract the programs from the archive and place it onto your disk.  At SPC we keep PulseBI at the following folder:


PulseBI folder has number of subfolders, like bin for programs, cfg for configuration, log for logs, schema for generated schema scripts, as well as folders where the data files will be placed for various data marts (e.g. Enrollment).  Once the PulseBI distribution is installed you need to configure access to SQL Server and SSAS Server databases, which is done by editing following file:


 Here is an example of the Settings.xml file as it may come in the distribution.  You may want to change the <SQLServer>, <SQLDatabase>, <SSASServer> and <SSASDatabase> tags to point to your machines/databases.

<?xml version="1.0"?>
        <From>"PulseBI <>"</From>
        <CCTo>"Pulse BI Admin <PulseBIAdmin>"</CCTo>

​​​​​​Once the file is edited, save it and you are ready for setting up the Data Warehouse.  You should also make sure that the account you will be using for accessing databases have administrative privileges to SQL and SSAS databases.

Data Warehouse

This section describes the setup of the Data Warehouse.  You need to install PulseBI program first prior to setting up the Data Warehouse.  To begin with the setup, start the Command Prompt tool, and change to the PulseBI\bin directory.  You will use the PulseBI.exe engine located in that directory to generate and populate your data warehouse.  We will explain how the PulseBI Demo database is created and loaded, and that process can be followed up for all other installations.  You can get the command line options of the PulseBI engine by typing following:

PulseBI -help

First step will be to create tables used for storing configuration information.  We will use the -Generate options for that, and -GenerateItem should be set to Config.  Also, we will set -GenerateTarget to Database so that it creates the tables in the database, as opposed to creating schema scripts on the file system.  Here is a command to issue:

PulseBI -Generate yes -GenerateItem Config -GenerateTarget Database

Once that command is completed successfully, the PulseBI SQL database (as you configured it in Settings.xml file) should have configuration tables created.  Next step will be to load the configuration.  PulseBI comes with default configuration that is stored in the PulseBI\cfg directory and can be loaded using the -Config option of the PulseBI tool.  Here is a command to issue:

PulseBI -Config yes -ConfigTarget Database

This should load the configuration into the config tables in PulseBI database.  Please verify that all the data is loaded properly by monitoring the messages on the screen, as well as checking the data in the database.  Once the configuration is loaded, you can proceed with building the data mart tables in the data warehouse (SQL) database.  Let us first create the tables for the Enrollment Data mart.  We will use the -Generate option, while the -GenerateItem will be set to Schema, the -GenerateTarget will be Database, and -GenerateMart will be Enrollment.  Here is a command to issue:

PulseBI -Generate yes -GenerateItem Schema -GenerateTarget database -GenerateMart Enrollment

This command should create all the tables necessary for the PulseBI Demo.  You can verify that by monitoring messages on the screen and checking for tables in the database.  Once this step is completed, you can load the demo data into the Enrollment database.  To do that you can use the -Refresh option, with -RefreshStaging option to load the data, and -RefreshDimensions option to populate the dimensions.  The -RefreshMart should be set to Enrollment, and the RefreshSSAS should be set to no so that we do not do the SSAS refresh yet (as we did not deploy the data mart yet).  Here is the command to issue to load the data to staging environment and to load dimension tables:

PulseBI -Refresh yes -RefreshMart Enrollment -RefreshStaging yes -RefreshDimensions yes -RefreshSSAS no

That would load the data into staging tables and populate the dimension tables, so we can deploy the data mart.

Data Marts

This section describes the setup of the Data Marts. The PulseBI Demo SSAS Project can be generated with the following command:

PulseBI -Generate Yes -GenerateItem SSAS -GenerateMart Enrollment

From this command is generated a custom Microsoft Visual Studio project. You will need to open the solution given in the following place:


Once you open the solution, you will be able to see the contents of the solution, like in the image below:


First, you will need to change the Pulse BI data source.  Open the data source and you will get the Data Source Designer popup page (see below).  Click on the Edit... button and the Connection Manager windows will pop up.  Change the Server Name to the appropriate server, and connect to your PulseBI SQL database.


Select OK on both pages to accept the changes.  Once that is completed, let's have a look into setting up deployment options for the Data Mart.  Right click on Pulse BI project (second line just below the Solution line) and select Properties.  The PulseBI Property Pages will appear.  Select the Deployment option on the page and change the Server property to point to your SSAS server, where you will deploy PulseBI SSAS database.


The next step is making sure that the security for the Administrators role is set up properly.  Open the Administrators role.


Next, Open the Membership tab of the "Administrators.Role [Design]" Tab. 

Administrators.Role [Design] Membership Tab.PNG

Make sure that the SharePoint service account you are using for your SharePoint is in the list.  Once that is completed you can deploy the project - right click on the PulseBI and select Deploy.  A DeploymentProgress window will appear, and once the deployment is completed, the "Deployment Completed Successfully" message will be displayed.


Once the deployment is successful, we can process the database.  Right click on PulseBI and select Process.  Make sure that the Process Full option is selected, and select Run...


The Proces Progress windows will appear.  Once the processing completes, you will get a "Process succeeded." message as indicated below.  That concludes the Data Mart deployment.



This section describes the setup of the Dashboards.  First you will need to import the dashboard into the SharePoint site, which can be done using the Dashboard Designer.  In your BI site, select the Site Content and then Data Connections folder.  Select the PerformancePoint tab and click the Dashboard Designer icon:


Click on Import Items icon.  Select dashboard file from the PulseBI\dashboard folder, e.g. Enrollment.ddwx and click Open.  The Import Items to SharePoint screen will pop up as depicted in the image below.


Click on Data Connections Copy to... link and select the site and Data Connections folder as the target.  Select OK.


Click on PerfomancePoint Content Copy to... link and select the site and PerformancePoint Content folder as the target.  Select OK.


Select Next.  The content will be imported and the Results page will appear as depicted below.  Review results and click Finish.


 Once the import is completed, we need to re-point the Data Connection to our PulseBI SSAS database.  In the Dashboard Designer, select the PulseBI data connection, and change it to point to your database.


 Next step will be deploying of the Enrollment dashboard.  Select the dashboard in Workspace Browser, right click on it and select Deploy To SharePoint.  Select the site where you want it deployed, choose Dashboards folder, and select OK.


 Once the deployment is completed, the dashboard will be displayed which finalizes the process.