MDX and DAX Query Analysis

What is MDX and DAX Query Analysis?

MDX and DAX query analysis, a capability available in SentryOne BI Sentry, provides in-depth details about SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) queries so you can analyze the impact of MDX query performance in  Multidimensional mode and DAX query performance in Tabular mode.

You'll find this feature in:

BI Sentry

Are you in the dark about SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) performance?

Are you becoming more dependent on the power of SSAS to provide critical business intelligence for your company—but frustrated when SSAS performance is slow?

You're not alone. When Microsoft introduced SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) in 2000, SSAS was specifically designed to support databases based on a multidimensional (OLAP-style) model. Over the years, SSAS has evolved and now also supports an entirely separate data model, SSAS Tabular, which in SQL Server 2017 has become the default installation model.  

Customers need a monitoring solution that keeps up with SSAS innovations, provides full analysis support for MDX and DAX queries, and simplifies SSAS performance monitoring and analysis 

For powerful SSAS performance monitoring, look no further than SentryOne BI Sentry.

SentryOne BI Sentry: the monitoring solution for SSAS


Multidimensional Expressions (MDX) is an industry-standard query and calculation language used to retrieve data from OLAP databases. MDX can also be used to query data in an SSAS tabular database as long as the database is not configured to run in DirectQuery mode.         

BI Sentry can highlight resource contentions on the server if your SSAS Storage Engine is creating and updating cubes with new data, or if the Storage Engine is recalculating and reorganizing existing data while also processing new MDX queries.             

BI Sentry's MDX-specific Performance Counters such as Total cells calculated and Total recomputes can help you better understand whether your MDX queries are optimized or not.



SentryOne also shows you whether MDX performance is impacted by SSAS server constraints such as CPU, memory, disk, or network resource limitations.

Similarly, BI Sentry offers numerous performance analysis features for Data Analysis Expressions (DAX) queries. DAX is a formula language used to create custom calculations in SSAS tabular model projects.  

BI Sentry provides internal details for DAX (as well as MDX) on Tabular models. You can see SSAS Storage Engine vs. Formula Engine time per query; internal VertiPaq cache matches and scans, and quickly identify callbacks to the Formula Engine, allowing you to pinpoint your Tabular model query bottlenecks.

What You Can Do with MDX and DAX Query Analysis

  • Graphical SSAS and Windows metrics displays in BI Sentry Performance Analysis Dashboard
  • Features comprehensive SSAS metrics for Tabular and Multidimensional Models
  • Full support for MDX and DAX query analyses
  • And more!

“We are more efficient in diagnosing performance issues with SentryOne. Time spent on this type of diagnosis has decreased by about 75%.”

—Mark Lessard, Associate Director of Database Architecture, Merkleinc


Read more independent SentryOne reviews on TrustRadius.