Business Intelligence Blogs

View blogs by industry experts on topics such as SSAS, SSIS, SSRS, Power BI, Performance Tuning, Azure, Big Data and much more! You can also sign up to post your own business intelligence blog.

«November 2015»

DirectQuery in Power BI Desktop

In the latest Power BI Desktop a new Preview features was released that now allows you to connect using DirectQuery to either SQL Server or Azure SQL Databases.  DirectQuery is a really neat feature that allows you to point to the live version of the data source rather than importing the data into a data model in Power BI Desktop. 

Normally when you want to get an updated dataset in the Power BI Desktop you would have to manually click the refresh button (this can be automated in the Power BI Service), which would initiate a full reimport of your data.  This refresh could take a variable amount of time depending on how much data your have.  For instance, if you’re refreshing a very large table you may be waiting quite a while to see the newly added data. 

With DirectQuery data imports are not required because you’re always looking at a live version of the data.  Let me show you how it works!

Turning on the DirectQuery Preview

Now, because DirectQuery is still in Preview you must first activate the feature by navigating to File->Options and settings->Options->Preview Features then check DirectQuery for SQL Server and Azure SQL Database


Once you click OK you may be prompted to restart the Power BI Desktop to utilize the feature.

Using DirectQuery in Power BI Desktop

Next make a connection either to an On-Premises SQL Server or Azure SQL database.

Go to the Home ribbon and select Get Data then SQL Server.


Provide your Server and Database names then click OK. ***Do not use a SQL statement.  It is not currently supported with DirectQuery***


From the Navigator pane choose the table(s) you would like to use.  I’m just going to pick the DimProduct table for this example and then click Load.  You could select Edit and that would launch the Query Editor where you could manipulate the extract.  This would allow you to add any business rules needed to the data before visualizing it.


Next you will be prompted to select what you want to connect to the data. Again, Import means the data

Read more

The Big Data Blog Series

Over the last few years I’ve been speaking a lot on the subject of Big Data. I started by giving an intermediate session called “Show Me Whatcha’ Workin’ With”. This session was designed for people who had attended a one hour introductory session that showed you how to load data, to look at possible applications … Continue reading The Big Data Blog Series
Read more

I travel, I work, I EAT

As most of you know I am a consultant with Pragmatic Works, which requires me to travel a bit.  During my travels I encounter new people, new places and what I realized recently new food.  I am not going to say this is some type of new blog series that I am starting, because I have started several and just got bored with them after a few postings.  What I am going to say is that if time allows I am going to share a few thoughts and photos on places that I eat during my travels.  With that, here are a few comments about two places that dined at during my last engagement in Houston, TX. 

The first eatery is Verona’s Pizza and Italian Cuisine, which is located at 3995 S. Gessner Rd.  Unfortunately, this restaurant does not have a website, but you can click here to view their menu.  If you enjoy Garlic Bread and Pizza this place is a must stop.  Me and a couple of guys from the client site visited this place for lunch and all I have to say is the food was excellent.  Here are a couple of photos for your viewing enjoyment:

Verona Garlic Bread  Verona Pizza

The next place is Masala Wok, which serves Indian Asian cuisine.  This intrigued me a bit so I decided to go.  What made my visit to this eatery really enjoyable was the group that I joined for dinner.  I had the opportunity to eat dinner with five guys from India and they really new what to pick from the menu.  Instead of ordering individual plates, they ordered several items from the menu and our table became a huge buffet.  My favorite item on the “buffet” was the Lollipop Chicken.  Now I have eaten Lollipop lamb chops, but never chicken.  Here is another picture for your viewing enjoyment:

Masalo Wok Lollipop Chicken 

So if you are in Houston stop by either of these fine establishments and enjoy a taste of the local flavor.  Oh yeah, Masala Wok is a chain with restaurants in Dallas, Houston and Austin. 

Talk to you soon,

Patrick LeBlanc, MVP, founder SQL Lunch, and food critic Smile.

Rate this article:
No rating

PatrickLeBlanc PatrickLeBlanc

Other posts by PatrickLeBlanc

Please login or register to post comments.