Power BI and Git

  • Comments posted to this topic are about the item Power BI and Git

  • I completely agree that having the ability to keep source code for anything in source control is very important! I have a similar problem with an obsolete version of Microsoft Access. Someone wrote an Access app using Access 2007, years ago, for a warehouse we have. It uses SQL Server as the backend. I'll admit that it really is an impressive piece of work, even if it is complicated with too much stuff pushed into one window. About a dozen people use it. They'll either have a copy of the Access app on their desktop or they'll run it off a network share. But the point is whenever anyone has a problem it's hard to diagnose, because you don't know where they're running it from.

    I digress. The point is that it's all one file, the .MDX file. And the users refuse to upgrade to a newer version of Office/Access. They give an excuse of some of the controls don't work, etc., but I suspect that's just a lame excuse to not have to upgrade. It always feels like a wild west, with this shadow IT that someone started, who left years ago, thus dropping it into IT's lap.

    Kindest Regards, Rod Connect with me on LinkedIn.

  • I think Access has lots of issues for this reason, though you can back it up. There is a "compare": https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/office/compare-two-versions-of-a-database-database-compare-a969a77a-5251-4b59-84ea-74e12a135a05

     

    However, that's not great for a VCS.

    People hate upgrading, and I get it. Often an upgrade brings newer things, but breaks older ones. Maybe controls don't work, but with the need for security and vulnerabilities, I think you have to sometimes accept some things won't work. Hard to do with end-users, who often really depend on muscle memory and habit.

  • Huh. I didn't know about MS Access's database compare functionality. That's good to know and I'll tuck it away in my mind.

    Yeah, I understand user's not wanting to upgrade due to newer things, and maybe breaking older things. Certainly, the UI might change, which can be a real annoyance. I accept it as just a part of the digital life we live in these days. I find it interesting that users accept the changes introduced on their phones by mobile app developers, but then balk at desktop or web developers changing those apps. I wonder if younger people (Gen-Z, Millennials) accept UI changes more readily than older generations do?

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 3 weeks ago by  Rod at work. Reason: corrected

    Kindest Regards, Rod Connect with me on LinkedIn.

  • Dead right about Power BI and source control. It feels like MS never anticipated that Power BI reports would need to be subject to source control.

    There are third-party apps out there which help a lot. I've cobbled together a patchwork development process using a combination of ALM Toolkit, pbi-tools and Tabular Editor but it feels like amateur hour. pbi-tools in particular does a great job of stripping out PBIX files into separate source-controllable files.

    If you haven't even tried to resolve your issue, please don't expect the hard-working volunteers here to waste their time providing links to answers which you could easily have found yourself.

  • More than a decade ago the company I was working with were trying to adopt DevOps and Agile ways of working.  As a team of DBAs we were wrestling with the problems of how we fitted into this new world.

    We had no support, no training and a lot of worries and doubts.  Some of these revolved around getting the BI team to adopt the disciplines necessary to support the new world.  To say they were resistant would be an understatement.

    We worked out how to get SSIS under source control but encountered problems.  Eventually we found the plug-in that made it tolerable.  However, the BI team stayed strangely quiet about this.  It was only later when we needed to enact a migration that we found out why.

    In the early days migrating  SSIS/AS/RS was both time-consuming and rather manual.  We had worked out how to achieve it using source control and various scripts.  It was only when we came to migrate the BI folk that we realised they had encountered the 1st problem and seized on it as an excuse to go straight back to the old ways of working.  At no point did they say "We are having problems with SSIS and source control, do you have a solution"?

    The decision to move to a DevOps/Agile world was a strategic decision taken at the top of the organisation.  Their decision to quietly got back to business as usual and the resulting impact  lead to them being let go.

    I'd like to think that if Microsoft had thought about the shift to Agile and the need to consider all things as source control artefacts then the team wouldn't have had the scope to shoot themselves in both feet.

    Big change is always painful.  The last thing you need is a vendor offering a King Canute technical impediment to an already stressful situation.


    With MS Access I seem to remember it was possible to export the various objects as Visual Basic frm, bas, mdl and rpt files?  Would this not allow for MS Access under source control?

  • Phil Parkin wrote:

    Dead right about Power BI and source control. It feels like MS never anticipated that Power BI reports would need to be subject to source control.

    There are third-party apps out there which help a lot. I've cobbled together a patchwork development process using a combination of ALM Toolkit, pbi-tools and Tabular Editor but it feels like amateur hour. pbi-tools in particular does a great job of stripping out PBIX files into separate source-controllable files.

    WOW, that's awesome! Do you, or anyone else, know of a similar tool to strip the modules out of an Access MDB file?

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 3 weeks ago by  Rod at work.

    Kindest Regards, Rod Connect with me on LinkedIn.

  • Rod at work wrote:

    WOW, that's awesome! Do you, or anyone else, know of a similar tool to strip the modules out of an Access MDB file?

    I've never used it and therefore don't recommend it, but this looks like it has potential: https://github.com/joyfullservice/msaccess-vcs-addin/blob/master/README.md

    If you haven't even tried to resolve your issue, please don't expect the hard-working volunteers here to waste their time providing links to answers which you could easily have found yourself.

  • Insightful, David, thank you for that input. I have never used SSIS, so can't respond to that. I've written some SSRS reports. I think that they would work in a VCS, as simple check ins/outs (commits) from either the command line or something like SourceTree. I have never seen SSAS, so I can't say.

    The adoption of DevOps or Agile is a struggle. One I've seen tried, and failed, here over the last 5 years. In the past some colleagues said they'd try DevOps/Agile, then didn't, then declared DevOps/Agile a failure. So, back to doing things as they've always done before, "because DevOps/Agile doesn't work".

    You're brought up an important point about Microsoft. For a company that says they're trying to get everyone to be better at producing solutions, to make it difficult or manual to extract code from SSIS/AS/RS/MS-Access is counter-intuitive. Microsoft, all I can say is, "Huh?"

    I live in the US. I've never heard of King Canute. I had to look him up. WOW, what an interesting fellow! King of England, Denmark, AND Norway all at the same time!! It was a long time ago, but still, that must have been hard!

    Vis-a-vis MS Access being able to export various objects as frm, bas, etc., maybe it does/can. I don't know, I confess I stay away from MS Access. I work at one of those places where, if you show any attitude to do something, then that is all you'll ever do, for the rest of your career, with them. If it were a one-and-done thing, then I wouldn't mind. But management here tends to think that people can only do one thing. Maybe two things, if they're exceptional. Access isn't anything I want to work in or branded with the, "he's the MS Access guy, take all Access issues to him all the time, every day, forever".

    Kindest Regards, Rod Connect with me on LinkedIn.

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