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Category: Power BI

Calculation Groups with Disconnected Tables in Power BI

Gilbert Quevauvilliers shows how to build a calculation group based on a disconnected table in Power BI and Azure Analysis Services:

I know that some of this might be able to be done with other calculation groups. I find I have more flexibility when combining Calculation Groups with a disconnected table.

Below are some of my previous calculation group blog posts that might also be of interest:

Create Currency Formatting Strings using Calculation Groups in Power BI Pro & Premium / Azure Analysis Services / SQL Server Analysis Services 2019

How to create and use Calculation Groups in Power BI Pro & Premium / Azure Analysis Services / SQL Server Analysis Services 2019

Click through for the demo.

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Updating Power BI Report Parameters via Powershell

Martin Schoombee gets off the beaten path:

We’ve only used the PowerShell cmdlets for Power BI so far in this series, but things are about to get interesting because there aren’t cmdlets available for everything you might want to do. One such thing is updating parameters, and we’re going to use the Power BI REST API (which the cmdlets use underneath the covers anyways) to achieve that.

REST APIs are usually a little tricky to deal with, especially the process of authentication. Fortunately there is an Invoke-PowerBIRestMethod cmdlet that makes it possible to use the API in PowerShell without the need to deal with some of the underlying complexities.

Read on to see how the whole process works.

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Grouping with GroupKind in Power Query

Ed Hansberry illuminates:

If you’ve used Power Query long enough, you’ve needed to group data and provide some sort of summary. For example, grouping by customer and summarizing sales. The normal way the Table.Group function works is to group the entire table by the field(s) you are grouping by, then providing whatever aggregations you need.

However, you can alter that behavior and group data by a column, and have it provide a separate group at each change in the data.

Click through for the rest of the story. There’s some complexity to the problem which is hard to summarize.

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Set Functions in DAX

Marco Russo and Alberto Ferrari walk us through three important set functions in DAX:

In this article we refer to “set functions” as functions that operate on sets. The three set functions available in DAX are: UNIONINTERSECT, and EXCEPT. Their behavior is very intuitive:

UNION performs the union of two or more tables.
INTERSECT performs the set intersection between two tables.
EXCEPT removes the rows of the second argument from the first one.

These functions take two or more tables as parameters and return a table. They prove useful not only to write DAX queries; a developer can also use these functions to prepare complex filters when implementing measures.

Read on to see how these work in DAX.

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Downloading Power BI Reports from a Workspace

Shabnam Watson has a helpful script for us:

You can use PowerShell to download all of your PBI reports in a workspace all at once without having to go through the PBI service UI one at a time. As an added bonus, you may notice that downloading a report with PowerShell is faster that downloading it through the PBI Service UI.

This script is useful for admins to take backups of reports deployed to PBI Service. It can be easily extended to loop through all/several workspaces. It is also useful for developers to take a backup of their report before publishing a new version.

Click through for the script.


Visualizing Parallelism in Power Query Diagnostics Data

Chris Webb wants to track query concurrency when loading data into Power BI:

Most of the time I’ve spent looking at Power Query Query Diagnostics data, I’ve been looking at data for a single query. Over the past few days though I’ve spent some time investigating what this data shows for all the queries that are executed for a single dataset refresh. To help me do this I wrote the following M function:

Click through for the function, as well as ways of visualizing the results.

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Passing Parameters from Power Query to SQL Server

Gilbert Quevauvilliers has an interesting solution to a common problem:

I had a requirement where the client wanted the capability to decide how much data to load from a SQL Server Query (TSQL). This was so that they could limit the dataset returned, as at times they did not need all the data.

So below I demonstrate how to achieve this.

NOTE: This will be slightly advanced because I had to manually add some code in the Advanced Editor in Power Query.

Maybe it’s because of the number of times I had to do this with Reporting Services, but this seems like it should be a lot easier than it is.

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Validating Data Model Results in Power BI

Paul Turley continues a series on doing Power BI the right way:

When designing a new data model, this is typically the first thing I do… For every fact table and for each large dimension table, I create a measure that returns the record count for that table. Users normally think about their data in business terms (like sums, ratios and averages) and not about how many records there are in a table. Record counts are a convenient sanity check for record completeness and distribution across groups; and may also be a good indicator for model size and performance.

Paul takes several passes at the problem, getting a bit deeper into it each time.

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The Power BI Release Plan

Matthew Roche clues us in on what’s coming for Power BI:

The Power BI team at Microsoft publishes a “release plan,” which is essentially the public product roadmap. Anyone can use it to understand what new capabilities and improvements are planned, and when they’re expected to be released.

One challenge with the official release plan comes from the fact that it is a set of online documents, and that for each “release wave” there is a new set of docs – it’s not always clear where to look for the latest information on a given feature.

But thanks to Alex Powers, this is a lot clearer now. Click through to learn how.

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