From a data structure and fundamental end-use there is very little difference. Operational reporting can be well served from a data warehousing environment via a series of data marts that are designed for reporting and list management. The key difference is, when you press your data warehouse into supporting daily tactical operational reporting, you step up to including the data warehouse as part of that operational systems' environment. This means including the data warehouse as a component of that application's mission critical set of software, databases and environments that will need to be included in the disaster recovery list.
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This was first published in April 2002