Data content libraries that are trusted with SharePoint Server 2010 use document libraries that contain the PerformancePoint Services data connections. The .PPSDC files are used to manage connections for data sources. This includes Excel Services spreadsheets, OLAP Cubes, Relational databases, and SQL Server databases. The data sources in the Dashboard Designer are defined and stored in a trusted data connection library that SharePoint Server 2010 offers. The trusted data connection library consists of safe documents that belong to that particular library. Users are restricted when it comes to how data source files can be used. They can be read but not modified or deleted. Through PerformancePoint Services a document library is created through a default setting. Administrators do have the ability to manage those data connections on the server. This is accomplished through creating additional data connection libraries. When a user updates data source connections in a document library the information will be shared and updated through Dashboard Designer. There are many trusted lists that can be developed in a trusted SharePoint Server 2010 list. The list or the parent of a list allows the site collection to be trusted during the initial configuration. It can also be done later on through the Central Administrator. These lists include:
With PerformancePoint Services, the security setting for data sources gets stored in each of them. There is a setting that is used to determine if the server is connected with an unattended user account, a customized unattended user account, or an authenticated user. With the SharePoint Server 2010 Secure Store Service (SSS), the ability to securely store data is available. This includes the credentials that are associated with a specific identity or group. The Secure Store Service is available for all of the farms on SharePoint Server 2010. Each of the data sources is configured for a given user to work with the authenticated user credentials. This is referred to as the Unattended Service Account. This is a domain set of credentials that are duplication when a user is connecting to a data source.
The Unattended Service Account is used to manage the data source for the queries. This is done to prevent the PerformancePoint Services from accessing the content database when the query is being executed. With PerformancePoint Services, data is stored and retrieved through Unattended Service Account credentials. This takes place in the Secure Store Service verifications. The server has to keep both the user name and the password of a user so that they can access it. The user name is stored in the PerformancePoint Services and the password is stored in the Secure Store Service. It is important when you create an Unattended Service Account that you make sure it has the right access. There are data sources that that to be in place for it to function properly. Unattended Service Account credentials aren’t cached on a global scale. Instead, they get retrieved from the Secure Store Service as they are needed. When you open a WorkSpace file in Dashboard Designer, the credentials will be cached for the connection. The Unattended Service Account password is retrieved from the Secure Store Service so that it can be the target data source.
With claims based authentication taking place in the SharePoint Server 2010, there is support for many providers. It is used to communicate from the application servers and the front end web servers. PerformancePoint Services allows for the authentication of providers at the same time on one web application. This is limited though to when the Dashboard is used through a web browser. The Dashboard Designer relies on the web application to be extended. It is then configured in order to support the Windows authentication provider.
With PerformancePoint Services offered by Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010, the objects that get stored in lists and document libraries can be secure when used within a dashboarding / graphical application. This is accomplished by coupling through the Microsoft SharePoint Sever 2010 security model. There are additional products features that can be accessed for customizing that security. PerformancePoint Services are dependent upon the SharePoint Server 201 security model. However, there are special security considerations that need to be evaluated during the planning stages. That should also include how managing that security will take place. All of the security is managed within the SharePoint Sever Central Administration Website. This covers all of the shared resources as well as the user access.
You will find three different methods for source data Authentication with PerformancePoint Services. Custom Data allows for SQL Service Analysis Services to be able to authenticate a user through custom specs. The name of the user is considered a parameter of the custom data field for the connection string. The custom data option is only used for Analysis Service Data. It can be used with both the 2006 and 2008 servers. With Per User Identity authentication each of the users has individual accounts that are used to access all of the data sources. The use of Kerberos Delegation has to be incorporated. There is a domain administrator that configures the Kerberos Delegation between PerformancePoint Services and the data sources. The external data sources have to be within the same domain as the SharePoint Server 2010 farm or a failure will occur. Unattended Service Account are a shared user account that is used for access to all of the different data sources. This type of domain account is low privilege. It is stored in the Secure Store Service. In order to create an unattended service account, there has to be the proper access to the data sources. This is a requirement of the dashboard.
With PerformancePoint Services the data source connections are contained. This occurs with the data content and document libraries that are part of the document lists. The security of the content ensures that users aren’t able to run queries against those data resources when the query objects can’t be trusted. Therefore trusted locations within those libraries and lists are created. The Farm Administrator is able to set all of the locations for the farm to be trusted. They can also choose to identify specific locations to be trusted. The ability to define the locations in the farm that will be secure means that there is a great deal of flexibility. A Farm Administrator no longer has the responsibility of securing the entire farm when it isn’t absolutely necessary to do so. These trusted locations are able to offer additional layers of security. There are restrictions for the query to be executed in regards to various data sources and objects. The document library for a web application can be defined as being trusted. With PerformancePoint Services the configuration of trusted locations and settings are managed through the Central Administrator. The configuration can also be managed through the use of Microsoft PowerShell 2.0. When you are planning the security for PerformancePoint Services, you will need to decide if you want to secure your entire web application or only portions of it. There are often many locations found within a given farm that will be marked as trusted. They use the following hierarchy within the SharePoint Server for the data and data sources:
- The use of trusted locations are disabled for various locations with data sources or content for the entire farm.
- The web application contains trust lists and document libraries.
- There is a collection site for the trust lists and document libraries.
- Trust lists and document libraries placed in a site.
- The farm has a trust list or document library in place.
The server will check if trusted locations are enabled when it is doing verifications. When it is enabled the server will check a list of trusted locations at the site collection. It will also look down the hierarchy to verify that all of the content is trusted. When items don’t use a data source they don’t have to be in a trusted location to be accessed. This includes KPI’s, dashboards, icons, and web pages. Trusted data source locations can’t be defined on a list or as a document library.
Being able to select the right architecture for a large list SharePoint project is very important. Such decisions are difficult to change after they have been initiated. It is a good idea to plan ahead and consider the size and volume of the content. You also need to think about how that content will be updated or new content will be added. Next, you need to take into consideration how the content will be accessed by users. These are all very important as they can take an effect on the way in which you want the content to be organized.
There are several considerations that need to be addressed when it comes to collecting. Single lists work well for items that aren’t logical to be in separate lists. This also offers the best experience for users. Multiple lists work well for large amounts of items when you can logically group them into lists. It can also offer a great experience for the user. This is a good option as long as users aren’t likely to get confused about what list to use or where to find content. Multiple site collection architecture should be considered when the repository requirements need more than millions of items to be supported by it.
The design of a large list solution is very important for you to consider. This could be possible if the single list architecture will be used. The decision for placing the content into a single list needs to be based on business requirements. This includes how easy it will be to work on and for discovering new content. There are instances when it may be more sensible for multiple lists to be considered. When this has been successfully implemented it will be more user friendly.
With a single list, it is easy for users to be able to find and to work on content. Therefore they don’t have to decide where they want to place that content. They also don’t have to decide which list they need to access in order to find a particular item. As the amount of content grows though it can become increasingly difficult to find the content. This is especially true if you are using methods for filtering views or that allow you to navigate the folders.
When a list starts to reach the hundreds of thousands of items with the metadata navigation it can become difficult in terms of management. There could be queries that return hundreds or thousands of results. This is because they aren’t being specific enough though. When a project has multiple types of distinctions to separate the content the use of multiple lists can be very useful.
There are some large scale points that can be archived. It can be worth considering the use of a multi site collection architecture. With SharePoint Server 2010 you are allowed to collect sites that can be grouped with each other. This helps to keep your balance of documents in place. There is a content organizing feature that can be useful for routing the documents from various site collections.
Search has to be implemented in order for the documents to be retrieved. This is going to help you with the long term storage. It allows content to be balanced for the multiple site collections. It also is used to offer support for many more documents than those which may be part of a single list.