Archive - Blog Posts on Power BI

Filters on Power BI Slicers – Wait, What? - There was a new feature released in the June 2019 version of Power BI Desktop that I really like and I think warrants some explanation and review.  The new feature allows you to pre-filter a slicer so that it only contains a subset of values that would otherwise appear in that slicer. Filters on Non-Slicer […] Read More
Show or Hide a Power BI Visual Based on Selection - I have written a few articles in the past that toy with the ideas of changing visibility and text colour based on selection.  I started to wonder if it was possible to make a visual appear (or not) based on a selection from the user.  There is no out of the box way to do […] Read More
Conditional Formatting with a Text Field in Power BI - One of the things I like about my live, online training courses is that I get to hear great questions from the trenches from people learning DAX and Power BI.  Last week, John asked me how to apply conditional formatting with a Text field (not a numeric field).  I knew it could be done, but […] Read More
Calculation Groups are Coming to DAX - I woke up Saturday morning to a lot of chatter and blog articles about an announcement that Microsoft made at SQL Bits.  Microsoft is adding “Calculation Groups” to the DAX language. There are a number of blogs already that talk about the announcement, including Chris Webb and The Italians, but I wanted to give my […] Read More
What is the Best Training for Business Analysts? - Updated Feb 2019.  This is an edited version of my original article which first appeared on my site in Feb 2016. The rate of change in the tools available to a Business Analyst has never been faster than it is today.  The market is changing so quickly that many Business Analysts (BAs) are only just […] Read More
Power BI Features Reporting
Power BI Features Reporting - Matt here.  The blog article this week was written by Neville de Sousa.  Neville shared with me a Power BI report that shows all the Power BI features released since July 2015.  Neville will explain the background and his report. Neville:  Keeping track of Power BI Desktop’s amazing features since it went GA is difficult, […] Read More
calendar overrun in Power BI
Calendar Over Run While Comparing Last Year’s Data - Recently, I was helping someone on Power BI community forum on the issue of calendar over run while comparing values with last year’s data. I thought it would make a good article to share with others. The Problem I will illustrate the issue using the AdventureWorks database (I need to make some tweaks to do this).  […] Read More
Import First Sheet with Power Query
Import the First Sheet in a Workbook with Power Query - My series about common patterns for loading data using Power Query received quite a lot of interest over the last few weeks.  You can review those articles in the links below Combine all files in a folder with Power Query. Load the Latest Version of a File with Power Query. Combine all sheets in a […] Read More
Combine All Sheets in a Workbook with Power Query - There are quite a few different common business scenarios where you get data in the form of a file on a regular basis.  The 3 common patterns I use most often are. Each day/month/year you get a new file containing incremental data.  All the data in all the files need to be combined and loaded. […] Read More
Best Book for Learning the M Language - Late in 2018 there was a new Power Query book written by Gil Raviv called Collect, Combine and Transform Data Using Power Query in Excel and Power BI.  That’s a bit of a mouthful actually; maybe the title was influenced by the same people that call Power Query “Get and Transform” in the Excel menu?!   […] Read More
Load latest file in Power BI
Load the Latest Version of a File with Power Query - There are quite a few common business scenarios where you get data in the form of a file on a regular basis from some source system and you need to process these files into your Power BI reports.  There are 3 common patterns that come to mind. Each day/month/year you get a new file containing […] Read More
Rename Blank in a Slicer in Power BI - A common problem I see some people struggle with in Power BI is when a slicer contains a (Blank) record for some reason.  The cause of the problem is not obvious and hence it is not clear how to fix it.   This article describes what causes this to occur and also how to fix it […] Read More
Importing XLSB into Power BI - I had a question from one of my online Power BI Training students just this week who was struggling to import data from a large *.xlsb Excel file.  I suggested she save the file as an XLSX file and try again – and that worked a treat.  But the question is why?  I had an […] Read More
Moving Queries from Power BI Desktop to Dataflows - A few weeks ago I wrote an article introducing dataflows in Power BI and discussed why you should care about them.  There are a few questions that have been spinning around in my head since then, significantly: What implication is there to the Power BI Golden Dataset as a result of the new dataflows? Should I […] Read More
Create a Planning View of Your Outlook Diary in Power BI - I was chatting to my wife the other day discussing all the things we want to do next year. It has long been a pain in the butt to get a high level (big picture) view of your Outlook diary to see what is happening (think forest, not trees).  In the past I have used […] Read More
Power BI Dataflows, and Why You Should Care - Microsoft recently released a new feature in Power BI called “Dataflows”.  You may have seen it pop up in a recent release of Power BI Desktop under Home\Get Data\Power BI Dataflows (beta) as shown below. It is also visible when you log into PowerBI.com and go to an App Workspace as shown in 1 below.  […] Read More
Create a Power BI Slicer Panel - There is nothing worse than having a Power BI report that has 50% of the space taken up with slicers.  When this happens, you only get half the page to visualise the actual data.  But on the flip side, if you don’t have the slicers it can be harder for the report users to filter […] Read More
Visually Appealing Power BI Reports - One thing I often get asked is “How do I create good looking Power BI Reports?”.  This is a very good question and unfortunately the answer is not straight forward.  I like to think of the visual appeal as the “Art” of communicating data insights.  The other major consideration is “what and how” to communicate […] Read More
Using Variables to Write Measures - It’s pretty early in the morning here in Sydney Australia (just after 6 am actually).  I just finished a fun YouTube session with Avi Singh where I demonstrated my approach to using variables in DAX to help write more complex formulas.  Avi streamed the session live on YouTube, and it is also there available to […] Read More
My Presentations at the MS Summit and Portland UG - Evaluation contexts in Power BI DAX I was in Seattle, USA in the last week of July participating in the Microsoft Business Applications Summit (MBAS). I love attending conferences like this and it was a privilege to present on a few topics over 3 days.  One of the presentations I gave was on the topic “Evaluation […] Read More