Book Image

Microsoft Power BI Performance Best Practices

By : Bhavik Merchant
Book Image

Microsoft Power BI Performance Best Practices

By: Bhavik Merchant

Overview of this book

This book comprehensively covers every layer of Power BI, from the report canvas to data modeling, transformations, storage, and architecture. Developers and architects working with any area of Power BI will be able to put their knowledge to work with this practical guide to design and implement at every stage of the analytics solution development process. This book is not only a unique collection of best practices and tips, but also provides you with a hands-on approach to identifying and fixing common performance issues. Complete with explanations of essential concepts and practical examples, you’ll learn about common design choices that affect performance and consume more resources and how to avoid these problems. You’ll grasp the general architectural issues and settings that broadly affect most solutions. As you progress, you’ll walk through each layer of a typical Power BI solution, learning how to ensure your designs can handle scale while not sacrificing usability. You’ll focus on the data layer and then work your way up to report design. We will also cover Power BI Premium and load testing. By the end of this Power BI book, you’ll be able to confidently maintain well-performing Power BI solutions with reduced effort and know how to use freely available tools and a systematic process to monitor and diagnose performance problems.
Table of Contents (21 chapters)
Part 1: Architecture, Bottlenecks, and Performance Targets
Part 2: Performance Analysis, Improvement, and Management
Part 3: Fetching, Transforming, and Visualizing Data
Part 4: Data Models, Calculations, and Large Datasets
Part 5: Optimizing Premium and Embedded Capacities

Folding, joining, and aggregating

While Power Query has its own capable data shaping engine, it can push down certain transformations to data sources in their native query language. This is known as Query Folding, and formally, it means that the mashup engine can translate your transformation steps into a single SELECT statement that is sent to the data source.


Query Folding is an important concept as it can provide huge performance benefits. Folding minimizes the amount of data being returned to Power BI, and it can make a huge difference for refresh times or DirectQuery performance with large data volumes of many millions of rows.

There is a bit of knowledge and trial and error required to get the best folding setup. You know a query step is folded when you can right-click on it and see the View Native Query option enabled, as shown in the following screenshot:

Figure 8.8 – View Native Query indicates that folding has occurred