What is Power BI Desktop?

Power BI Desktop

Microsoft Power BI Desktop is a free data analysis tool available on local computers that offers users an intuitive GUI for local data analysis, with features like navigation, canvas fields and visualizations.

Connect and transform data from hundreds of sources, creating a self-service analytics experience for business users. Furthermore, its AI-powered engine automates many of the tasks currently handled by analytics professionals.

Power BI is a cloud-based service

Power BI is a cloud-based business intelligence tool that connects to more than 70 on-premise and online data sources and transforms them into interactive visualizations, providing personalized dashboards to stay on top of company activity as well as building reports to empower your business to make informed decisions. The tool integrates seamlessly with applications like Microsoft Excel, Cortana, GitHub Marketo Salesforce ZenDesk; more connections are being added all the time!

Power BI Desktop’s Query Editor makes it possible to connect multiple data sources and combine them into one data model through modeling. Once that process is completed, visuals representing your data and reports designed on it can be created – and shared among members in your organization.

Once your report is created, you can easily pin its visualizations to a dashboard in Power BI Service or mobile apps and add bookmarks, buttons and filters for easier navigation within it. Plus, use the Publish feature to share it with others!

Power BI’s data analysis capabilities go well beyond creating dashboards and reports; it can handle structured and unstructured data from various sources like databases, spreadsheets and external applications – providing greater insight into business operations while making it easier to spot patterns or trends otherwise difficult to spot.

Start by installing Power BI Desktop onto your computer through either Windows Store or Microsoft’s website, running its installer file and following its prompts until installation is complete.

Power BI Desktop provides four steps for creating reports: connecting to and modeling data, designing reports and publishing them to Power BI Service (documentation folder available for this). Once these four steps have been taken, exploring your data and uncovering business insights becomes much simpler.

It is free

Microsoft Power BI is an intuitive analytics solution, making it simple and free. The software connects disparate data sources while offering powerful visualisations that make information simpler to digest. Users can create dashboards and reports for improved business decisions; should any questions arise they can always find answers in Microsoft’s official docs.

Apps such as Microsoft Visualization App can be downloaded directly onto a computer via Microsoft Store, where once installed they can be launched to create visual representations of data. Once it has been downloaded and launched, newcomers may take some time learning how to use all its features; once these have been mastered however, sharing insights among colleagues becomes much simpler.

Start using Power BI Desktop by signing into your work or school account to gain access to its content. From there, select from the main page options to import data before using advanced query and model building tools for analysis and sharing your work via publishing to the Power BI service. It offers both individual users as well as organizations free Premium Per User licenses; however collaborative report creation requires purchasing Power BI Pro license.

Power BI’s wide variety of data connectors makes it a powerful asset, enabling you to connect with apps and services you already use. There are over 300 out-of-the-box connectors to choose from; custom connectors can even be coded in. Furthermore, Microsoft is continuously adding more connectors so you can analyze data from any source.

Microsoft Power BI Desktop can be downloaded and run free of charge on any PC that meets its minimum system requirements, provided it meets these minimum system requirements. You can deploy it across multiple computers simultaneously using third-party applications like WiX Toolset; alternatively you can customize installation settings by specifying an installer msi file which can then be extracted using third-party tools.

It is easy to use

Power BI Desktop is an accessible reporting tool with many features designed to make creating beautiful charts simple and interactive. Combining the best of Microsoft Excel’s functionality with an appealing visual interface, Power BI Desktop’s user-friendly nature means learning it is straightforward – no prior experience is needed with Microsoft Office products required! Report creation using industry sample data provides an ideal opportunity to explore its capabilities – plus report creation can be accomplished in just a few steps!

Power BI offers three views that make data analysis and visualization simpler: report view, data view and canvas. Of these views, report view is where most users spend their time; it includes several elements like those listed below:

The canvas allows you to add visuals to your Power BI reports and is equipped with tools to organize data, add filters, set schedule refreshes and connect real-time sources. In addition, the data view displays all tables and fields within imported data which may help in identifying specific tables/fields you require and which visualization approach would work best.

For creating visuals, click the canvas and click “Build visual”. This will open a page with all available data fields and visualizations; drag-and-drop them from your data model into the canvas to form charts or other visual representations of your data model.

Power BI can also transform data in other ways besides just building visuals; using its Power Query Editor you can clean and transform data as well. By selecting or deleting rows, separating columns, pivoting or unpivoting information or merging multiple sources you can alter it until it meets your specifications. It works similarly to working with clay: starting out as one large block then trimming away or adding pieces until your shape emerges.

As soon as your data is in order, you can publish it to Power BI Service to allow end-users access and analyze it – helping guide business decisions more effectively.

It is customizable

Power BI Desktop is a self-service business intelligence (BI) tool that enables users to create custom visuals for their reports. The tool offers various visualization options, such as maps, charts, graphs and KPIs as well as drag-and-drop functionality for data organization and visualisation. Businesses of all sizes from small startups up to multinational conglomerates use this product.

Microsoft provides an in-depth documentation portal that provides explainers and tutorials for each of its capabilities, which are particularly helpful for newcomers navigating this tool. In addition, there is also an expansive knowledge base with answers to frequently asked questions.

Themes can make your Power BI Desktop reports more appealing by automatically altering formatting and colors of visuals, saving hours of work by eliminating manual formatting of individual elements. To apply a theme, open any report and click the dropdown arrow next to “Themes,” select one from the drop-down list of themes available, and click OK.

There are dozens of preloaded report themes you can select, with more being introduced regularly. They are organized by purpose and features – for instance “AI Visuals,” which analyze data to create insights that include questions-and-answer, decomposition tree, and smart narrative features.

Establishing and sharing Power BI Desktop reports is straightforward. You can connect to data from numerous sources, including Excel spreadsheets and CSV files, databases (SQL Server, Oracle and IBM), other Power BI datasets, Azure data connections and third-party services like Salesforce or Google Analytics – even your own on-premise database if available!

Power BI Desktop is designed to meet the specific needs of your organization, so it can easily meet those demands. Customize its user interface by changing size of icons and text as well as adding and removing tiles; customize dashboards by changing fonts, color schemes, background images as well as downloading custom visuals from AppSource marketplace; or even add your own visuals by uploading them yourself!

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