In order for Microsoft customers to adopt the SharePoint 2010 / SQL Server 2012 business intelligence platform, they must first master the intricacies of installing and configuring SharePoint 2010 and then integrating the SQL Server 2012 components into this environment. While this can be done in a single machine environment, in any real world scenario, multiple servers are frequently incorporated. For example, a common scenario is a single computer hosting the SharePoint 2010 farm, with a second SharePoint application server hosting the PowerPivot service application as well as the Reporting service application (and frequently these are placed on dedicated servers). Next, for availability and performance reasons, additional PowerPivot and Reporting servers (and sometimes additional front-end servers) are frequently added to take advantage of the built-in load balancing in SharePoint 2010 with SQL Server 2012. In some cases, the SharePoint databases are placed on a dedicated server, which is configured using the new capabilities of Always On in SQL Server 2012. Finally, as soon as you move to a multi-server environment, you begin to run into the classic double-hop problem of passing a user’s authentication token from the client through SharePoint 2010 and its services to the backend data source. This frequently requires the configuration of Kerberos in the customer’s environment, although there are capabilities in SQL Server 2012 to minimize (and in many cases) eliminate the need for Kerberos – if everything is configured properly.
However, setting up the above environment (even a simple version) for a BI QuickStart / PoC or other customer evaluation scenario is overly complex and fraught with opportunities for problems which immediately place the Microsoft business intelligence platform in a negative light, even before the customer starts evaluating the capabilities of Power View, Power Pivot and the Analysis Services tabular model (not to mention Excel Services and PerformancePoint). In this talk, I will demonstrate how to navigate the complexity and (hopefully) make the complex seem simple (including a 5 minute configuration of Kerberos).
Carl has been working with the Microsoft BI stack since SQL Server 7.0 and OLAP Services. Most recently, Carl worked with the SQL Server product team on the release of SQL Server 2012 – in particular, he worked with early adopters on Power Pivot, tabular modeling, SharePoint integration, and security configuration. Carl has been working with the SQL Customer Advisory Team (SQL CAT) for over 10 years, both as an independent consultant and as a Microsoft employee on cutting edge and complex solutions. Since leaving Microsoft, Carl continues to work with Microsoft customers to deliver business intelligence solutions that utilize the business intelligence features of SQL Server 2012 and SharePoint 2010. Most recently, Carl has also been working with the Database Consolidation Appliance and with Big Data and Hadoop, in particular placing Microsoft BI on top of big data solutions.