Basic Data Mining Tutorial

Welcome to the Microsoft Analysis Services Basic Data Mining Tutorial. Microsoft SQL Server provides an integrated environment for creating and working with data mining models. In this Basic Data Mining Tutorial, you will complete a scenario for a targeted mailing campaign in which you create three models for analyzing customer purchasing behavior and targeting potential buyers. The tutorial demonstrates how to use the data mining algorithms, mining model viewers, and data mining tools that are included in Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services. The fictitious company, Adventure Works Cycles, is used for all examples.

When you are comfortable using the data mining tools, we recommend that you also complete the Intermediate Data Mining Tutorial, which demonstrates how to use forecasting, market basket analysis, time series, association models, nested tables, and sequence clustering.

In this tutorial, you are an employee of Adventure Works Cycles who has been tasked with learning more about the company's customers based on historical purchases, and then using that historical data to make predictions that can be used in marketing. The company has never done data mining before, so you must create a new database specifically for data mining and set up several data mining models.

This tutorial teaches you how to create and work with several different types of data mining models. It also teaches you how to create a copy of a mining model, and apply a filter to the mining model. You then process the new model and evaluate the model using a lift chart. After the model is complete, you use drillthrough to retrieve additional data from the underlying mining structure.

In SQL Server 2008, Microsoft introduced several new features that help you develop custom data mining models and use the results more effectively.

  • Holdout Test Sets - When you create a mining structure, you can now divide the data in the mining structure into training and testing sets.

  • Mining model filters - You can now attach filters to a mining model, and apply the filter during both training and testing.

  • Drillthrough to Structure Cases and Structure Columns - You can now easily move from the general patterns in the mining model to actionable detail in the data source.

This tutorial is divided into the following lessons:

Lesson 1: Preparing the Analysis Services Database (Basic Data Mining Tutorial)

In this lesson, you will learn how to create a new Analysis Services database, add a data source and data source view, and prepare the new database to be used with data mining.

Lesson 2: Building a Targeted Mailing Structure (Basic Data Mining Tutorial)

In this lesson, you will learn how to create a mining model structure that can be used as part of a targeted mailing scenario.

Lesson 3: Adding and Processing Models

In this lesson you will learn how to add models to a structure. The models you create are built with the following algorithms:

  • Microsoft Decision Trees

  • Microsoft Clustering

  • Microsoft Naive Bayes

Lesson 4: Exploring the Targeted Mailing Models (Basic Data Mining Tutorial)

In this lesson you will learn how to explore and interpret the findings of each model using the Viewers.

Lesson 5: Testing Models (Basic Data Mining Tutorial)

In this lesson, you make a copy of one of the targeted mailing models, add a mining model filter to restrict the training data to a particular set of customers, and then assess the viability of the model.

Lesson 6: Creating and Working with Predictions (Basic Data Mining Tutorial)

In this final lesson of the Basic Data Mining Tutorial, you use the model to predict which customers are most likely to purchase a bike. You then drill through to the underlying cases to obtain contact information.

Make sure that the following are installed:

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2

  • Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services 

  • The AdventureWorksDW2008R2 database.

To enhance security, the sample databases are not installed with SQL Server. To install the official databases for Microsoft SQL Server, visit the Microsoft SQL Sample Databases page and select SQL Server 2008R2.


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