Lineage Analysis

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Lineage Analysis


Lineage Analysis allows users access to answer the following two very important questions:


  Where did this data come from?

  Where is this data used?


A huge time-drain for all types of SQL developers and DBA's, whether focused on BI or not, is tracing the lineage and impact of data within a system. Lineage Analysis eases this strain by enabling users the ability to explore the dependencies in their environment.  


Important Note:

Lineage Analysis works hand-in-hand with the DOC xPress feature and requires an already set up solution with at least one snapshot generated and its dependency scanned. If this has not yet been done, please follow the steps described in "Creating your DOC xPress Solution".


Feature Highlights

  Diagrammatic and interactive form saves users many hours

  Speeds up development by giving users the ability to view dependencies clearly

  Enables users to pinpoint the source of data in objects

  Allows business analysts to make clear judgments about the correctness of data

  Enables users to easily identify areas where error may be introduced


Table of Contents

  Visual View

  Text View

  Trace Mode


Tutorial Video


To access this information, click on Lineage Analysis located on the top navigation bar. Once loaded, users will be shown all available solutions within the DOC xPress repository containing Lineage Analysis. These solutions can be sorted by: Date Created, Name, Last Updated, Last Snapshot, and Last Refreshed. They then can be placed in Ascending or Descending order.



From here users can click on a solution to go to the Lineage for that solution. By default, users will be directed to Lineage Analysis' visual view. If users wish to view a textual version of Lineage Analysis, click the text view () button located on the Lineage Analysis toolbar. To utilize the trace mode functionality, follow the steps detailed on the trace mode page.


For Lineage Analysis to work properly, it requires the desired solution to contain a dependency set. If there is no dependency set for the currently selected solution, a red warning will appear prompting the user to immediately take a snapshot. A snapshot must be taken before Lineage Analysis will allow a user to view the dependencies for a solution.



Though there are three different views to help users navigate the dependencies of their solutions, there are two common sections that are found within all three views: Lineage Analysis Toolbar and Solution Explorer.


Lineage Analysis Toolbar

Regardless of the current view, the lineage analysis toolbar allows users to navigate around and adjust the behavior of Lineage Analysis.


  Change connection: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar, the change connection allows users to connect to a different DOC xPress metabase


  Back to Solution Selection: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar, the back to solution selection button allows users to go back to the list of available solutions for use within Lineage Analysis


 

  Manage Aliases: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar, the manage aliases button allows users the ability to clarify the location of implicit items for this solution. For more details on the inner workings of this feature, view the manage aliases page.


Important Note:

After aliases have changed, DOC xPress will be required to snapshot the solution in order to refresh the dependency links within Lineage Analysis.


  Detail Level: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar, the detail level button allows users the ability to adjust the granularity of the objects that will be included within the current session of Lineage Analysis

o   High Detail: Allows users the ability to see down to the column, measure, and attribute level of lineage

o   Medium Detail: Allows users the ability to see down to the table, component, SSRS item, KPI, and measure group level of lineage

o   Low Detail: Allows users the ability to only see the database, package, and report level of lineage


  Diagram Layout: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar and enabled in visual view only, the diagram layout button allows users to control the way objects are organized within the lineage diagram

o   Force-Directed: Organizes the diagram in a nondeterministic manner surrounding the focused object

o   Circle: Organizes the diagram into concentric rings with the focused object being in the center

o   Grid: Organizes the diagram in a grid where inbound dependencies are in one column and outbound dependencies appear in another column


  Save Image: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar enabled in visual view only, the save image button allows users to save the current diagram as an image


 

  Reload Solution: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar and enabled in visual and textual view only, the reload solution button allows users the ability to refresh the lineage data from the DOC xPress metabase


 

  Show Legend: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar and enabled in visual view only, the show legend button allows users the ability to toggle the refresh the legend


  Dependency Directions: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar and enabled in visual and textual view only, the dependency direction button allows users the ability to adjust the direction types of the dependencies to include within the current session of Lineage Analysis. An object dependencies are typically created when an object is included within another object's definition.

o   Bi-Directional: Both inbound (lineage) and outbound (impact) dependencies will be included within the current session

o   Inbound Only: Only relationships that an object depends on will be included within the current session

o   Outbound Only: Only relationships that are impacted by objects will be included within the current session


  View Modes: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar and enabled in visual and textual view only, the view mode button allows users the ability to alternate between the three different view modes used within Lineage Analysis

o   Visual View: Allows the user to view the currently focused object using the visual view

o   Text View: Allows the user to view the currently focused object using the text view

o   Trace Results: Only enabled when a trace has been executed, the trace results button switches the user to trace mode


  Show Trace Bar: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar, the show trace bar button allows users the ability to toggle the trace mode bar


 Track Selection: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar, the track selection button allows users the ability to disable the feature that causes the diagram to re-draw every time a new selection is made within the Solution Explorer

 Dependency Level: Located on the Lineage Analysis tab of the toolbar and enabled in visual view only, the dependency level button allows users to increase or decrease the number of levels of separation from the currently focused object to be displayed within the Lineage Diagram.


Important Note:

The more dependency levels included within the Lineage Diagram may cause it to become increasingly more difficult to read the diagram.


  Key Filter: Located on the Refinements tab of the toolbar and enabled in visual and textual view only, the key filter button allows users the ability to toggle the visibility of relationship links that involve the use of primary or foreign keys


  Object Filter: Located on the Refinements tab of the toolbar and enabled in visual and textual view only, the key filter button allows users the ability to toggle the visibility of relationship links that involve object dependencies


  Data Lineage Filter: Located on the Refinements tab of the toolbar and enabled in visual and textual view only, the key filter button allows users the ability to toggle the visibility of relationship links that involve the impact or dependency of another object's data will be visible


  Collapse by Technology: Located on the Refinements tab of the toolbar, the four collapse by technology button allows users the ability to toggle between collapsing all objects of a specific technology that the user wishes to not view into a single, more manageable, node



Solution Explorer

The solution explorer contains a hierarchically organized tree of all objects found within current detail level that contain lineage. If track selection is enabled, left clicking on an object within the solution explorer will re-draw the lineage diagram focused on the currently selected object.



Users can expand and collapse object, displaying the object's children, using the arrow to the left. If an object does not have an arrow then that object either does not have any child objects that contain lineage or the current detail level prevents it from expanding further.


Users can also take advantage of the search text box, allowing users the ability to quickly search the current solution for the exact object they wish to view lineage for.


Additionally, users can right click on objects within the solution explorer to launch a context menu that will help users take advantages of other DOC xPress features.

  Focus on this: If track selection is disabled and the currently selected object contains lineage, the focus on this button will refresh lineage analysis with the with the currently selected object focused

  View metadata: If the currently selected object contains metadata, the view metadata button will launch the Metadata Viewer focused on that specific item.

  Set as trace source:  If the currently selected object contains lineage, the set as trace source button will enable the trace bar and set the currently selected object as the source. This context menu option is used within trace mode

  Set as trace target:  If the currently selected object contains lineage, the set as trace target button will enable the trace bar and set the currently selected object as the target. This context menu option is used within trace mode