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What are the benefits of using Splunk to handle Excel data as opposed to other software solutions?

Engager

Hello everyone,

I am the designated Splunk developer in my department at my company and I am slowing transitioning our old reporting and monitoring model over to Splunk. Before we were using Microsoft SharePoint services to publish both our performance metrics with SSRS and excel PowerPivot reporting; however we no longer are using the SSRS reports from SQL, Splunk is how we are gathering our performance metrics now.

The next task is, if justifiable, to let Splunk handle our Excel data with the Splunk ODBC Driver found on Splunkbase. I find it silly to have 2 separate solutions for our current model and I am looking for real use cases and wins that you all have experienced after allowing Splunk to handle your excel data, as opposed to some other software such as what I mentioned above. Basically I am just doing research from the consumer's point of view, that are using Splunk for this actual purpose.

So what are you using the Splunk ODBC Driver for? What were you using before this? Also, how has it benefited your organization? This would be incredibly helpful. Thanks.

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Re: What are the benefits of using Splunk to handle Excel data as opposed to other software solutions?

SplunkTrust
SplunkTrust

Excel PowerPivot is extremely powerful functionality. So is splunk. But the functionalities are different.

If you set that up as an either/or choice, then the users will CORRECTLY go with what they know.

By the time something is in Excel, it has already been pounded into submission. Splunk is vastly superior in dealing with data that has NOT YET been homogenized like that. So, you might be better off to think in terms of using splunk to HELP PAINLESSLY CREATE the Excel data. Track back the source of that wild data that is turned into that Excel PowerPivot, and see if splunk can help with the periodic ETL.

If you can insert splunk into the pipeline that creates that data, and as a result cheaply deliver them a simple csv of cleaned data that they can then Excel-ize, then you can wean them off of any inappropriate use of Excel, while generating a good ROI for the business and keeping yourself from being perceived as a splunk zealot or an organizational hooligan or a kingdom-builder.

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Re: What are the benefits of using Splunk to handle Excel data as opposed to other software solutions?

Engager

@DalJeanis,

Thanks for your reply. Have you used the ODBC Driver that Splunk provides? I ask, because this is the only way I have found that Splunk can actually interface with Microsoft Excel, otherwise it would need to be converted to CSV and parsed. So its my understanding the Splunk ODBC Driver will allow for better collaboration between Splunk and the ODBC Driver that Microsoft provides to interface with services such as Excel.
It would seem that my company wants to still utilize the Excel data, especially the data analysts and data scientists. So if it is possible to parse the external data such as Excel that would be great as opposed to recreating it. that is the claim to fame supposedly for the Splunk ODBC Driver from what I read. Those are the kind of use cases I am looking for, that is if they exist.

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