Power BI 2.0 is Almost Here

As you might already know Microsoft announced Power BI 2.0 General Availability, Power BI 2.0 GA, on July 24. In this post I explain some new features that are ready to use now. Now I can say Power BI is significantly improved during the preview period. We are able to refresh on-prem datasets, we can modify the look and feel of the reports, we can share resources and much more now. For instance go to Power BI website and the first thing you can see is the Power BI logo is changed from Power BI Preview to Power BI.

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Let’s see what is new in Power BI.

Get Data

  • Sign into Power BI
  • Click on Get Data button from the bottom of the left navigation panepower bi 02

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Power BI Personal Gateway, Five Things You Must Know

When we are talking about using a new technology we need to understand it first. Power BI Personal Gateway is not an exception.  Despite you can easily install the Power BI Personal Gateway, knowing the following important points is crucial. I believe the following 5 points are significantly important to prevent you getting into troubles with the installation process as well as using the gateway:

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  • Power BI Personal Gateway is only available on 64-bit Windows operating systems
  • Once you install Power BI Personal Gateway you don’t need to install another one as just one gateway works for any number of supported data sources
  • You CANNOT install the Power BI Management Gateway on the same machine as Power BI Analysis Services Gateway
  • If you’re trying to install the Power BI Personal Gateway on a network having Active Directory make sure that the account you’re using to install the Power BI Personal Gateway is able to “Logon as a Service”. In some cases the “Logon as a Service” policy is prevented on Active Directory for security reasons. The “Log on as a Service” should be applied to those accounts that are NOT under an Active Directory. So even if you are using a Local Account you should make sure that the local account is added to the local security policy “Log on as a Service”. If the account used to install the Power BI Personal Gateway is banned from the “Log on as a Service” policy you’ll get “Service ‘Data Management Gateway Service’ (DIAHostService) failed to start. Verify that you have sufficient privileges to start system services.” error message.

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Refreshing On-Prem SQL Server Database on Power BI using Power BI Personal Gateway

image It’s been awhile that lots of us were waiting for this feature. And some of us like me just tried to build it in our way. I spent some time to develop something similar using OData in combination with IIS and Basic Authentication features. Well, it was sort of successful and unsuccessful simultaneously! I mean, I was able to refresh SQL Server data remotely, but, when it came down to refreshing the dataset uploaded into the cloud Power BI it just failed. It was mainly because of the method that Power BI uses to refresh data.

By the way, I’m glad to see that we are finally able to refresh an on-premises SQL Server database from Power BI website. Refreshing data is very crucial for every report and dashboard which is working on top of frequently changing database.  So we need to be able to schedule a data refresh on the cloud. Yesterday Microsoft announced a new gateway specially designed for supporting data refresh for on-premises data sources as below:

  • SQL Server
  • Oracle
  • Teradata
  • IBM DB2
  • PostgreSQL
  • Sybase
  • MySQL
  • SharePoint List
  • SQL Analysis Services Tabular model (uploaded data, not live connections)
  • File (CSV, XML, Text, Excel, Access)
  • Folder
  • Custom SQL/Native SQ

As you see SQL Server is not the only one.

Installing Power BI Personal Gateway

It’s easy to install the Gateway. Just make sure that meet the following requirements:

  • The machine that you’re going to install the Gateway on it should be always up and running
  • You can NOT install the Gateway on the same machine as a Power BI Analysis Services Connector

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