Power BI is a powerful tool which allows you to easily build interactive data visualizations from almost any type of data you have. This Microsoft tool can be used as a desktop app, mobile app or directly online. It is free of use if you don’t have a lot of data and quite cheap if you need more. I am not a business intelligence developer and I don’t have a BI background at all still I found Power BI a great way to quickly build my dashboards.
As an agile developer and scrum master I wanted to capitalize on the data we have from TFS and make even more complete dashboard than the ones built in. I tried online with my msdn linked Team Services account and It was so mind blowing that I immediately wanted to use it at work. BUT – there is a but – Power BI does not have a TFS connector for on premises TFS servers. And it’s clearly not in the top of their backlog.
So here is the trick to connect Power BI to your on Premise TFS platform.
- Download and install Power BI Desktop
- Launch Power BI and in the first screen click on Get Data
- On the Get Data window choose Database then SQL Analysis Services Database. Then click on Connect.
If you don’t have rights to query this DB ask for a read access.
- Now enter the Server instance name and click on OK.
- In the Navigator window you can now choose which dimension you want to work on.
For building dashboards regarding teams I use the Work Item perspective.
- Now you’re all set to build nice data visualization reports.
Another post will follow on how quickly build some reports with Power BI.
We had the chance going in Atlanta this September to attend THE Microsoft technology conference also known as : Ignite. More than thousands of technology sessions in a week, 2 big keynotes in a 20k seats arena, more than 24k it guys and girls gathered to talk about the future of IT and a huge party at the end, this was in numbers the Ignite 2016.
Needless to say that it was an intense and immersive week following dozens of sessions on many different subjects. Subjects trending this year were Innovation and Openness to other platforms. Innovation at Microsoft is including lots of areas like Internet Of Things, Machine Learning, Augmented Reality, Cloud computing, Data Visualization… We had demos and sessions on those subjects and it is clear that Microsoft is investing a lot in transforming IT by automating and simplifying things for developers and ops. We now have frameworks, platforms available to start working on all of this today with Hololens, Cortana Intelligence, Microsoft IOT Vision, Azure Machine Learning… Another trend which started with Satya Nadella taking commands is Microsoft openness to other platforms and this continues to be a refreshing subject. Visual Studio Code, ASP.NET Core 1.0, Docker were significantly covered all the week.
Obviously I wasn’t able to follow all sessions and the choice was difficult but here is the selection of my favourites sessions I attended :
1 – Review the Microsoft application platform for developers
Very fun session with Scott Hanselman.
2 – Explore IOT Scenarios from the field and their reference architectures
One of the best session I attended in a week about real scenarios and real architectures used in IOT projects.
3 – Dive into end-to-end Power BI Industry solutions with real world customer scenario
This session is in my top 3 because of the energy of the presenters, subject was also interesting and Power BI is really becoming a very powerful tool for data visualization.
Bonus Track : Lead an autonomous DevOps team at Scale: a true story
You have probably already read articles on DevOps at Microsoft but this is always nice to hear from the guys who lived the transformation and explain how and why it happened.