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Securing Program Files, Common Components, and Data Files

For each instance of Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services, the Setup program installs the Analysis Services program and data files into separate folder structures. These folder structures are as follows:

  • The default location for the Analysis Services files is \Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSAS10.#\OLAP, where # is a number that represents the instance number. There are four subfolders within this folder structure: Backup, Bin, Data, and Log. Backup information, essential files for the Analysis Services service itself, actual dimension and cube data, and log information are stored in these folders. This information must be kept secured. The Setup program limits access to all the files in this folder structure to members of the Administrators local group and the Analysis Services logon account. Users do not need access to the files in these folders.

    Important noteImportant

    A Analysis Services installation and all Analysis Services stored data must be on a hard disk that is formatted by using the NTFS file system.

  • The default location of the common components for all Analysis Services instances is \Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\100\Shared. The Setup program grants users read access to the files that are stored in this folder structure, to enable them to perform authorized tasks and access the permitted data. You do not have to modify these permissions.

Although the Setup program limits access to the Backup, Data, and Log folders to members of the Administrators local group and the Analysis Services logon account, you must make sure this data stays secure and is not compromised.

  • Access to the Backup folder is restricted, but there is no requirement that you use this folder when you back up an Analysis Services database. If you use a different folder for database backups, you should similarly secure that folder structure.

  • Not only is access to the Data folder restricted, but the files in the Data folder are stored in a binary format. This means that these files cannot be read by using a text editor. However, another instance of Analysis Services can read these files if the instance has access to the files in this folder. To limit this security risk, you must make sure that members of the Administrators local group and users who know the Analysis Services logon account password can be trusted.

  • If you move the Data folder after installation to another location, such as on a RAID array or a SAN, you must make sure that only members of the Administrators local group and the Analysis Services logon account have access permissions on the Data folder in the new location.

  • If you configure multiple partitions for one or more measure groups, and store these partitions in a separate folder structure, you must make sure that only members of the Administrators local group and the Analysis Services logon account have access permissions to this folder structure, to prevent unauthorized users from obtaining access to the Analysis Services data in these partitions.

  • If you log execution traces to a location other than the Log folder, you must similarly restrict these traces because sensitive information may be captured in such traces.

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