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«February 2016»

Power BI Publish to Web for Anonymous Access is Here

Earlier this week on Wednesday the Microsoft Power BI made an incredibly exciting announcement and released Power BI “publish to web” as a preview feature. This is HUUUUGE news! This was probably the top requested feature and its finally here thanks to the hard work and dedication of the Microsoft Power BI team!

Read Getting Started with R Visuals in Power BI

Power BI “publish to web” allows you to easily expose a Power BI report to the world through an iframe that can be embedded wherever you like.

To publish your Power BI report to the web, log into your Power BI site.

Find the report that you want to share and click File in the top left.
Power BI publish to web

You’ll see a message pop up box similar to below. Click the yellow button to create the embed code.
Power BI publish to web preview

This is where you’ll see a very important warning!
WARNING: Reports that you expose through the “publish to web” feature will be visible to everyone on the internet! This means NO AUTHENTICATION is required to view the report that is embedded in your application.
warning 2

Once you do that, you’ll receive an embed code that you can then use to expose your Power BI report within your blog as seen below!

As you can see the report maintains all the interactivity features of Power BI. And as your Power BI report updates and changes, those changes will be reflected in your embedded Power BI reports!

Pretty awesome!

Additional Resources

Read the Power BI “publish to web” announcement here.

Read the Power BI “publish to web” documentation here.


Let me know what you think of this feature or if you have any questions. Leave a comment down below.

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Non Empty vs NonEmpty

Hey everyone, in this blog I want to address a very common MDX Question. What is the difference between the NON EMPTY keyword and NONEMPTY function? To take it a step further which one should you use?

Non Empty keyword VS NONEMPTY Function.

The big difference between the NON EMPTY keyword and the NONEMPTY function is when the evaluation occurs in the MDX. The NON EMPTY keyword is the last thing that is evaluated, in other words after all axes have been evaluated then the NON EMPTY keyword is executed to remove any empty space from the final result set. The NONEMPTY function is evaluated when the specific axis is evaluated.

Should I use NON EMPTY keyword or NONEMPTY function?

Ok Mitchell, so you told me when each of these are evaluated but really you haven’t told me anything up until this point. Can you tell me which one I should use already? Well, unfortunately, it depends. Let’s walk through an example of each using the BOTTOMCOUNT function.


In this example I’m returning the bottom ten selling products for internet sales. Notice that I have returned all products that have no internet sales, this is not necessarily a bad thing, maybe you want to return products that don’t have sales.


However if you don’t want to return these products then we can try using the NON EMPTY keyword. In the below example you can see the results when I add NON EMPTY to the ROWS axis.


WHOOOAAA, what happened?? A lot of people would have expected the results here to show the bottom ten products that DID have sales. However, that is not the case, remember that I said the NON EMPTY keyword is evaluated LAST after all axes have been evaluated. This means that first the bottom ten selling products which have $0 in sales are first returned and then the NON EMPTY keyword removes all that empty space from the final result.

BOTTOMCOUNT function with NONEMPTY function.

So let’s try this again, if you want to return the bottom ten products that had sales then we must first remove the empty space before using the BottomCount function. Take a look at the code below:


In this code we first remove the empty space before using the BOTTOMCOUNT function. The result is we return the bottom ten products that had internet sales. Once again neither one is right or wrong here it just depends on what you want in your final result.

NON EMPTY Keyword vs. NONEMPTY Function – Performance

There is a very common misconception that the NONEM

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SSRS 2008 R2: How to dynamically size your INDICATORS

The indicators that are available in SQL 2008R2 adds great visualizations to your reports. I was recently building an SSRS demonstration and I stumbled upon an additional feature that makes the indicator even more visually appealing. Using a not so obvious property of the indicator you can set its size. The value must be between 0 and 1 or an expression that results in a value between 0 and 1.

To change the size of an indicator, ensure that you have selected the indicator that you want to resize. Similar to the following image:


Next click F4 and the Properties window will open. Locate the IndicatorStates property, click in the text box, and click the ellipses button that appears.

Once you click the ellipses the IndicatorState Collection Editor will open.

Several options are available in this editor, but for now I will focus on the ScaleFactor. According to the description given by the editor, the ScaleFactor determines the mumber by which the indicator is scaled. I am not sure what a mumber is,but I think they meant number. Either way, changing this value from the 1 to anything between 0 and 1 will reduce the size of the indicator. For example, if I change the size to .5 the indicator would look like this instead of like this . In addition to providing an explicit value you can also provide an expression. Remember the expression must result in a value that is between 0 and 1. Assume that, not only do you want the indicators color to visually represent performance, but you would also like the size to be an indicator. Take a look at the chart below:

The first three rows show the Total Sales for each category and the final row represents the Total Sales for all categories. A quick way to implement the indicator sizing strategy is to base the size on a percentage of total calculation. In the case of the above report it would be the Total Sales of one category divided by the Total Sales for all categories. For example, the totals sales for the Accessories category divided by the Total Sales for all categories: (9,093,653.27 / 30, 093,177.09).

To accomplish this return to the IndicatorState Collection Editor, click the drop down in the ScaleFactor property text box and select Expression. In the expression editor you will type and expression similar to the following:


Once you have done this click OK twice and run your report. You will notice that the indicators are different sizes. These sizes are equal to the result of the expression for each row.

Notice the smaller the category Total Sales the smaller the indicator. In fact, the indicator for the Clothing category is barely noticeable. If you have any questions or comments regarding this post please feel free to email me at

Talk to you soon

Patrick LeBlanc, founder SQL Lunch

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