I've been developing a data warehouse (Kimball) for my job over the last two months and two of our business analysts are trying to figure out how to get data out of the SSAS tabular models. They know about DAX (the query language of SSAS Tabular and PowerPivot) but they've been having a hard time getting basic tutorials related to DAX.
For analysts new to DAX, I'm going to post some links to sites that I think are helpful for learning DAX. They will be broken down into three categories. I will also try augmenting and improving these lists from time to time.
Update 20150422: If SSMS is too primitive for you, there is also a tool on CodePlex called DAX Studio.
- Using DAX to retrieve tabular data. This link is a really excellent starting point if you want to run DAX queries in SSMS. It's a much, much easier sandbox compared to PowerPivot or SSDT.
- In fact, Robert Sheldon's blog posts are great in general for step-by-step tutorials relating to SQL Server.
- Chris Webb also has an entire series of posts on DAX, though they are typically more advanced.
- Context in DAX Formulas. Context is an important topic. However, it's not immediately necessary to get data out of your cubes. But rest assured, it will come up. And when it does, it's a challenging topic and will require extra brain-power to tackle.
- DAX Patterns. You can pull of some amazing queries and calculations in DAX. Once you've mastered the introductory and intermediate levels, it's time to start learning these great patterns.
- Microsoft Excel 2013 Building Data Models with PowerPivot. I read this book. It's slightly advanced, but a good reference. I recommend reading it after you've figured out the basics of DAX. I also recommend working through as many of the examples as possible!
- Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Analysis Services: The BISM Tabular Model. This is an advanced book that is aimed at developers of tabular models. I recommend this only if you are going to be building cubes/tabular models.