Power BI Integration

Power BI is a Business Intelligence and Data Visualization tool for converting data from various data sources into interactive dashboards and analysis reports. In this tutorial, you will learn Power BI basics like:

Introduction to Power BI


Power BI is a cloud-based business analytics service that allows us to conceive and interpret data with a higher rate, performance, and intelligence. It relates people to a vast variety of data via easy-to-use dashboards, powerful reports, and beautiful visualizations that bring our data to life.


Workspaces are a kind of container that can have many different dashboards inside them. The one that you’re most likely to use is my workspace which is kind of your own personal area to hold your information.

Dashboards, Reports, and Datasets

Within those workspaces you’ll have a number of dashboards, you’ll have a number of reports, and a number of datasets. A dashboard can have several tiles in it that are extracted from various different reports yet each report is attributed to one dataset and one dataset only. We can see how those dashboards are made up of visuals from particular reports and how those reports pull data from particular datasets.

Power BI Architecture

Power BI is a business platform that includes several technologies to work together. It delivers outstanding business intelligence solutions. You will have a clear understanding of the Power BI Architecture with the help of the below image.

Introduction to Power BI Online and Desktop

Introduction to Power BI Online

The highlights of the Power BI online:
  • Cloud based service (Part of Office 365)
  • Access your data, wherever it may exist
  • Ask questions, integrate with cortana analytics, and more
  • Create curated content based on your organizational needs
  • Share insights across web, mobile, and embedded within your own applications
The main highlights of the Power BI Service User Interface.

  1. Navigation Pane
  2. Canvas
  3. Question and Answer Block
  4. Icon buttons, including help and feedback
  5. Dashboard Title
  6. Office App Launcher
  7. Power BI Home
  8. Icon buttons

Introduction to Power BI Desktop

The highlights of the Power BI online:
  • Free download that starts your Power BI experience.
  • Not an end user tool, but a power user and designer tool.
  • Can be used to mash, model, and design engaging experiences.
  • Transform and clean data
  • Design once and view anywhere

Power BI Features - Get Data

You can load data from any file or online data source. Follow the below steps to load data into the Power BI Application.

  1. Click on the Get data and choose the Blank query as a data source.

    The Power Query Editor window appears.

  2. Click on the Advanced Editor option which is highlighted below.

  3. Enter the REST API source details in the Query.

  4. Once the Query gets executed, you can see the data in the form of List records. You need to convert these records into table format.

  5. To convert these records into a table, click on the To Table option which is highlighted below.

  6. After conversion, the data gets converted into table format. To get the actual source data, click on the icon.

  7. Enable the checkboxes as shown below and click OK.

  8. The actual data looks like as shown below. Now click on the Close & Apply option. The data source gets loaded to the data model.

Building a Basic Report

This section helps you to build a basic report in the Power BI.

  1. Drag one of the fields from the Fields section onto the canvas. It will display the data it contains. Repeat the same procedure for another column and drag it to the existing column.

    You can change the data text size and color using the menu visualizations.
  2. Similarly, drag more fields from the Fields section onto the existing field area. If you drop them somewhere else on the canvas, they would plot individually as a unit parameter and will not contribute to the group plotting.

  3. With the data selected on the canvas, you may click on the first visualization option, and it will transform the table into a simple bar chart. You may choose to plot it differently either as a stacked bar chart, line chart, pie chart, or any other type, is solely your own choice to try.

  4. Since you selected to plot revenue by different provinces, in different years, and by different categories, the single plot allows you to scroll through the other visuals in the same plot. Click on the double down arrow to scroll between different views for the parameters mentioned.

  5. You can even view the data associated with the plot by clicking on the rightmost option that appears if you hover on the visualization. Select the See Data, and it will open a new tab below the visualization that will contain the data figures plotted above in the graph.

  6. Changing the axis style, line color, points on the canvas, font size, font style, and height of the graph or visualization can be accustomed according to the user's choice. Simply click on the Format icon below the visualization types, and you will get access to all features.

  7. An alternative method to plot something is by selecting the type of visual you want to plot. It will plot a vague or dim visual representing the prototype of the actual visual. Now you may choose the field from the Fields section and drop it on the visual to generate an actual visual based on the data.

  8. Experiment yourself by creating new visualizations, adding new categories of data, and varying between different types for the same data set. If you fall short of space on the first page, you can always create additional pages by clicking on the plus button and rename them by your choice.

  9. Now that we have done some of the visualizations and we would like to export them or use them in our reports. Click on Publish. It will ask you to save your project as a '.pblx' extension. Name your project and save it on your local disk.

  10. Upon saving your file, a new dialog box will appear asking you to enter your sign in information to the Microsoft Power BI Pro version (cloud version) of the same product.

  11. Check out the How to embed Power BI reports into portals page to embed Power BI reports into portals.