Much of the existing content for converting a PowerPivot workbook to a SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) tabular instance assumes that the reader is a developer. This post details the process of upsizing a PowerPivot workbook to SSAS from the point of view of a knowledge worker and or a SharePoint administrator.
This post assumes you are using PowerPivot as a data source, so no UI is present in the workbook hosting the PowerPivot model. The display of the data would happen from another workbook that connects to the PowerPivot workbook as a data source or from some other reporting tool like PowerView or Excel Services.
What is upsizing PowerPivot (aka convert PowerPivot to tabular model, aka convert PowerPivot to SSAS):
Upsizing PowerPivot is simply moving the solution from a SharePoint centric storage mode to a SSAS centric storage mode. The end result is that the PowerPivot model and data will not be stored in SharePoint. PowerPivot stores models in Excel Workbooks when using a SharePoint centric mode and stores the models in native SSAS files when using SSAS storage mode.
The key takeaway is that the same query engine is used regardless of where the model is stored, Excel client, SharePoint or SSAS.
Why upsize a PowerPivot workbook:
You may want to consider upsizing your PowerPivot workbook after it exceeds 100MB in size for the following reasons.
Issues to consider before upsizing:
Steps to upsize a PowerPivot workbook:
Congratulations you have now upsized your PowerPivot model to a powerful full featured SSAS database.
This is one of my favorite PowerPivot features to graduate excellent personal BI developed models to a truly enterprise scalable data source. The other key point is that many front-end reporting tools can also leverage those upgraded models.
do you have further steps on retrofitting the powerpivot excel file to point it to the tabular model?