Month: November 2015

Datazen Lives On in SQL Server 2016

Microsoft acquired Datazen back in April 2015, and I explored it and wrote about it a couple months later. To date, Microsoft has mostly left the product as is, although a new version containing bug fixes and a few enhancements was released in September.

While I was at PASS Summit I learned that there is a bright future for Datazen as a significant part of the MSBI reporting offerings. Microsoft has provided a reporting roadmap that looks very promising. They are working to align cloud and on-premises solutions and to harmonize report types. In the MSBI reporting world, there will be 4 report types:

  • Paginated reports (SSRS)
  • Interactive reports (Power BI)
  • Mobile reports (Datazen)
  • Analytical reports (Excel)

For on-premises solutions, you will have one unified SSRS Report manager that supports mobile reports and interactive reports as well as paginated reports.  And it’s much prettier than the old SSRS report manager!

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New vs old SSRS Report Manager, courtesy of @idigdata

There will also be a unified mobile app so there is no need to switch between apps to get Datazen reports and Power BI reports.

You can get the ebook here for free! We plan on updating it as more information comes out on Datazen and SQL Server 2016.

Power BI Updates: Gotta Catch Em All!

PokemonCollection
© Shakegood513 | Dreamstime.com – Pocket Monsters Photo
Catch all the Power BI updates like you catch all the Pokemon

Things are once again exciting in Microsoft BI. SQL Server 2016 CTPs are available, and Microsoft is promising even more goodness to come as 2016 nears GA. In addition, Power BI has expanded over the last year and is constantly releasing new features. The Power BI team does a good job blogging about new updates.  But new features are coming out so fast it can be hard to keep up. There are weekly updates to the web service (PowerBI.com) and what appear to be monthly updates to the desktop app and mobile apps. Sometimes we get the surprise of multiple updates to different parts of the Power BI suite in one week, or even one day. I have frequently found myself trying to remember if a feature is available on the web or desktop app or both. And I have wondered a few times if a feature that was mentioned as coming soon has been made available yet.

Power BI List
My Power BI Updates list will be maintained on it’s own page so you don’t have to search/scroll through my blog to find it. Click the image to go to the page.

Since it’s part of my job to stay on top of the latest Power BI features and capabilities (and because I like lists), I decided to keep a list of the features released for easy reference. It’s much more convenient for me to have a single place to reference when I’m discussing specific capabilities and updates with clients and colleagues. I’m now sharing my list with you.

The list contains the date the feature release was announced with a link to the related Power BI team blog post. It also contains the category I assigned to the update, to help you focus on the types of features that interest you most.  And it has a short description of the update. You should be able to sort and filter the list right on the page since it’s an embedded Excel Online document.

I’ll try to keep this list updated at least weekly, but feel free to let me know if I’m missing any updates. If you haven’t checked out Power BI in a while, this list shows how it’s rapidly changing and improving. You might find that Power BI is now worth another look.