Enable effortless discovery of data by business and technical data consumers with Azure Purview
Published Dec 14 2020 10:16 AM 3,128 Views

Enterprise data continues to grow in volume, variety and velocity but much of this data is not analyzed. As Analytics, BI, AI and ML continues to gain momentum, enabling easy access to meaningful data for data consumers is needed now more than ever. 


Chief Data Officers can now enable business and technical analysts, data scientists, data engineers with access to trustworthy, valuable data.  



Figure 1: Search & Browse is at the core of Azure Purview that powers the discovery of business & technical metadata to drive data governance.


Intuitive search and browse experience

The Search & Browse experience in Azure Purview Data Catalog makes finding the right data easy. Users specify what they are looking for in terms they are familiar with - the search index created in Azure Purview does the rest. Based on relationships between technical and business metadata gathered in the Purview Data Map, the search looks up the keyword in the index. Attributes such as name, description, owner, annotations, and so on return matching assets and results. The search results are page-ranked for relevance using Azure Purview scoring profiles building on the Azure Purview Data Map.


As an example, if you have glossary term on a table as “Promotion” and the description of a Power BI report as “Product promotion percent”. Searching for the keyword “promotion” will return the matching table and the report based on the keyword lookup on the term annotations and description.



Figure 2: Azure Purview global search box for auto complete, recent search history, auto suggestion and so on.


Search techniques employed include semantics, wildcard search, auto complete, and handling of special characters. As soon as the user starts typing, the search shows three sections.

  1. Recent search history 
  2. Search suggestions based on a lookup of the index. This shows matching text from attributes like descriptions, owners, classifications, labels and so on.
  3. Asset suggestions powered by a wildcard lookup.

The user can take up one of the recommendations or proceed as-is.


Hierarchical browsing by data source

Another way to discover data is via the Browse asset experience. Here users can navigate through a hierarchy of data systems to discover relevant data assets. For eg: The user wants to get to a specific customer dataset that she knows resides in a folder called "Dimensions" in Data Lake but is unaware of the actual name of the dataset. With Azure Purview, now the user can simply go to the Browse asset experience in Purview and navigate the folder structure of the Data Lake to self-serve the dataset details.


The hierarchical Browse asset experience is available for all types of data sources including SQL Server, Power BI, Storage account, Azure Data Factory, Teradata and so on.



Figure 3: Browse your organizations data using the data source hierarchical name space.


Related assets

Azure Purview combines the search and browse experience to enhance data discovery of structured and unstructured data. The discovery can start with a keyword search to get the list of assets ranked by search relevance. On asset selection, the overview of an asset and additional details like Schema, Lineage, Contacts, and Related tabs are displayed. Users can go to "Related" to see the technical hierarchy for the selected asset. Users can then navigate the hierarchy to see the child assets at each level.



Figure 4: Navigate the hierarchy of data source from Related tab


In the above screen shot, the data discovery started with search for “sample submission”. From the search results, the blob “sample_submission.csv” is selected. In the related tab, you can navigate the hierarchy of the Blob store to see related datasets in each folder.


Get started now!

  1. We are looking forward to hearing how Azure Purview helped unlock the potential of your organization's data using Search & Browse asset.

    1. Create an Azure Purview account now and start understanding your data supply chain from raw data to business insights with free scanning for all your SQL Server on-premises and Power BI online
    2. Use the tutorials to scan and catalog your organization data
    3. Start discovering your organization data using Search & Browse
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Last update:
‎Sep 21 2022 03:21 PM
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