Building an OLAP cube does not require a database to be available. In fact, flat files may be used directly and can be thought of as tabular views of the raw data, actually very similar to database tables.
Single File Mode
In this mode, a cube is built using a single file of data containing both the facts (i.e. measures) and the dimensions. No doubt, this is the simplest way to create an OLAP cube.
Multi Files Mode
In this mode, a cube is built using several dimensions files and one file containing the facts (i.e. measures). This is similar to a star-schema approach.
Several cubes (as shipped with icCube) are built using files as their data sources:
Next chapter: Excel Sheets details data sources made of one or more Excel sheets.