Archive - Blog Posts on Power Query

Use Power Query to Manage Dropbox Space - Level: Beginners I got this dreaded Dropbox email recently as shown below. I needed to clear out some of the files I have loaded in Dropbox so I didn’t have to upgrade my account.  It occurred to me that I could make this process a lot easier by using Power BI to quickly show me […] Read More
Does the Power Pivot Excel Add-In Crash for You? - Level: Beginners I was chatting to Avi Singh the other day and we were comparing notes about the live Power Pivot training classes we both offer in Australia (me) and the USA (Avi).  One thing we both have in common is that the Microsoft Excel Power Pivot Add-In CRASHES a lot during training!  When I say “crash”, I […] Read More
Who Needs Power Pivot, Power Query and Power BI Anyway? - Level: Beginners One of the great challenges Microsoft has faced with its “new” suite of Self Service BI tools (particularly Power Pivot) is that most people that could benefit from the holy trinity (Power Pivot, Power Query and Power BI) don’t even know these tools exist, let alone how the tools can help them succeed in […] Read More
Shaping vs Modelling in Power BI - Level: Beginners Power Pivot, Power Query and Power BI are 3 products that are closely related to each other and were all built for the same purpose – enabling Self Service Business Intelligence.  I first learnt to use Power Pivot for Excel, then Power Query for Excel, and finally Power BI.  But there is a […] Read More
Top 10 Tips for Getting Started with Power BI - Level: Beginners I really love Power BI, and I have learnt so much over the last 12 months that sometimes it is easy to forget the challenges I had in getting started. Today I am sharing my top 10 tips on how to get started with Power BI. Build Your Reports in Power BI Desktop, […] Read More
Direct Connect from Excel to Power BI Service - Level: Beginners Today Microsoft announced a great new feature that allows you to direct connect FROM Excel TO Power BI and not the other way around.  This simple change really streamlines the integration experience between Excel and the Power BI Service, and makes Power BI even more like you own personal SSAS server. There are […] Read More
Top Tips for Sharing Content Using Power BI - Level: Beginners I have learnt a lot about sharing Power BI content over the last year since Power BI hit the main stream.  A lot of my learning has come from trial and error, and there are lots of things I wish I knew before I started.  Today I am sharing my top tips about […] Read More
Conditional Columns in Power BI Desktop - Level: Beginners Microsoft recently announced a new conditional column feature in Power Query (Power BI Desktop version) that warrants a blog post.  This feature makes the process of creating banded columns much easier for the average user.  I blogged about banded columns using DAX here, and now there is this second, potentially easier approach.  In […] Read More
What is Power BI - Level: Beginners What is Power BI? Microsoft Power BI expert, Matt Allington, explains This ‘What is Power BI’ post is the third in my “what is” series having previously blogged about “What is Power Pivot” and “What is Power Query”.  This topic is the hardest of the three to give a straight answer, however it […] Read More
Power BI Analyze in Excel – What You Need to Know - Level: Beginners Microsoft announced another awesome Power BI feature recently – Analyze in Excel.  This feature was requested by Avi Singh from and was heavily supported as a requirement by the community. You can read more about how you can influence future releases at the bottom of this post.  But let’s get straight into […] Read More
What is Power Query - Level: Beginners I am still astounded by the number of people I meet that have never heard of Power Query and Power Pivot.  The good news is there are lots of people out there in for a pleasant surprise.  I think Power BI will solve the “lack of awareness of Power Query” problem over the […] Read More
Multiple Data Tables in Power Pivot - Level: Beginners All of the learning examples in my book Learn to Write DAX are built on an Adventure Works database that has a single data table.  But Power Pivot is a very capable tool for building reports that combine multiple data tables.  Although it is very capable, the logic of how to combine multiple […] Read More
Calculated Columns vs Measures in DAX - Level: Beginners It has been 16 months since I wrote my blog post 5 common mistakes of self taught DAX students at  I train a lot of people at my training courses, including my Power BI online training course, and also help many more on various forums.  The number 1 mistake I see in […] Read More
Getting Started with DAX Studio - Level: Beginners DAX Studio is a fabulous free tool that allows you to directly query your Power Pivot/Power BI data models.  It is not immediately obvious (particularly to beginners) exactly how using DAX Studio can add value.  I often refer people on various forums to use DAX Studio but then lack a suitable reference to […] Read More
What is the Best Training for Business Analysts? - Level: Beginners The rate of change in the tools available to a Business Analyst has never been faster than it is in 2016.  The market is changing so quickly that many Business Analysts (BAs) are not even aware of the great new tools that are available to help them succeed in their jobs and careers.  […] Read More
Extract from my Book Learn to Write DAX – Calculated Columns - Level: Beginners In this post today I am providing a small extract from one of the chapters in my book Learn to Write DAX.  It has been just over 2 months since the global release of the book.  As at this time of writing, I have 6 customer reviews on Amazon from readers that have […] Read More
Power BI Public Story Telling is Pure Genius - Level: Beginners It is now possible to share your (public) reports from with anyone over the internet for free (currently a free preview), without the need to manage licencing, logins etc (see demo below). Microsoft has been promising this feature for a couple of months now and the speed in which these new features […] Read More
Collections Reporting Using Power Pivot - Level: Beginners I was helping a user at with a question about collections reporting and thought it would make a good blog post. There are a few interesting concepts involved which I will explain as I go along. The scenario is as follows. We have 2 tables – one table contains all invoices (the […] Read More
Early Feedback from Readers of Learn to Write DAX - Level: Beginners I have had some really good positive feedback from a couple of early readers of my new book “Learn to Write DAX”. “I purchased your eBook last Saturday and I want to let you know that I have learned more in the last 96 hours than I have in the last 3 months. […] Read More
Power BI Visuals Gallery is a Game Changer - Level: Beginners No software company can build every single feature that everyone wants to see all at once.  Ultimately there has to be some prioritisation, and along with the prioritisation comes compromises and ultimately disappointments for some (many?).  Back in July 2015, Microsoft started a chain of actions and announcements that will prove to be […] Read More