How to Combine Direct Query Dataset with Single Excel File

To combine a Direct Query dataset with a single Excel file in Power BI means bringing two data sources together to create a comprehensive view of your data, and can lead to better and more informed decision-making.

This can be particularly useful when you want to supplement your Direct Query dataset with additional data from an Excel file, like budget or sales data that are not directly available in the Direct Query dataset.

In this article, I will walk you through a step-by-step guide on how to combine a direct query dataset with a single Excel file in Power BI.

Let’s get started.

Introduction: How to Combine Direct Query Dataset with Single Excel File

You can follow the below steps to combine a direct query dataset with a single Excel file in Power BI:

Create a new report in Power BI

To start with, open your Power BI Desktop and create a new report by clicking on File and then New.

how to combine direct query dataset with single excel file - monocroft

Connect to the Direct Query dataset

After creating a new report, connect to the direct query dataset. To do that, click on Get Data on the Home tab and select your Direct Query dataset.

Then follow the prompts to enter your server name and credentials.

how to combine direct query dataset with single excel file - monocroft

Import the Excel file

Now, the next thing to do is to import the Excel file. To do that, click on Get Data again, and this time select Excel workbook from the list of available data sources. Browse to the location of your Excel file and select it.

You can go to transform data to clean the data.

Append the two tables

Now, to combine these two In the Power Query Editor window, click on Append Queries in the Combine section of the Home tab then choose the tables to append In the Append Queries window.

Select the Direct Query dataset as the first table and the Excel file as the second table. Then ensure that the columns in both tables match up, and then click OK.

Verify the appended data

In the Power Query Editor window, you should now see the appended data, and verify that the data is correct.

Load the appended data into the report

Click on Close & Apply to load the appended data into your report. Now you can create visualizations that incorporate data from both sources (Direct Query dataset with the Excel file).

Save the report

Finally, select the appropriate chart or visualization from the Visualizations pane to display your data, and save the report by clicking on File and then Save.

Some Best Practices and Recommendations

For the best performance and optimization processes here are some best practices and recommendations you must follow.

Refresh the Data

You must always update the Direct Query data and Excel file to ensure you are working with the latest data. Hence, you must regularly make use of the refresh button, or set up a “scheduled refresh” to be sure you are working with the updated data.

Data Security and Privacy

Data privacy and security are crucial, especially when you are combining data from different sources. Hence, you must take privacy and security measures.

  • Data Ethics: You must stick to data privacy regulations, such as GDPR and HIPAA, and understand the data storage and process guidelines to ensure compliance during the data integration process.
  • Encryption: Also, you can consider encrypting sensitive data, to prevent unauthorized access during both the transfer storage process.
  • Access controls: Finally, pay close attention to user access controls to ensure that only authorized users can work on the data.

Performance Optimization

For efficient data analysis, you must consider optimizing your analysis tool. Here are some techniques you should consider:

  • Partitioning: Partitioning has to do with splitting data into units based on similar criteria, e.g., date ranges, regions etc. Hence, you consider partitioning the data when working with large datasets to improve query performance.
  • Data caching: Data caching decreases data source requests, which in turn, enhances performance.
  • Query folding: Leverage query folding to push data processing back to the source, as it allows the data source to perform calculations, and reduces the amount of data transferred to your analysis tool.

Documentation and Versioning

Finally, you should consider proper documentation and version control to guarantee data integrity. To do so, consider the following practices:

  • Document your sources: You should also consider documenting the source of every dataset, such as the system data, database, file location, etc. This allows for transparency and makes other users understand the origin of the data.
  • Document every modification: You must always document any transformations such as data cleaning, data type conversion, etc., applied to your data during the merger process.
  • Version control: Consider implementing version control for the merged dataset and other related scripts. This allows you to track changes, and effectively collaborate with other users working on the same dataset.

FAQs: How to Combine Direct Query Dataset with Single Excel File

What is a Direct Query dataset in Power BI?

A Direct Query dataset in Power BI is a type of dataset that is connected to a data source, such as a database or web service, and retrieves data on demand when needed.

This allows you to work with large datasets without having to load all the data into memory.

Can you combine more than one Excel file with a Direct Query dataset in Power BI?

Yes, you can combine multiple Excel files with a Direct Query dataset in Power BI.

You can do this by repeating the steps for importing the Excel file and appending the data to the existing query.

Can you edit the Direct Query dataset after combining it with an Excel file?

Yes, you can. However, the changes you make to the dataset will affect the entire report and not just the combined data.

Can you refresh the data in the Direct Query dataset?

Yes, you can refresh it. This will retrieve the latest data from the data source and update the report.

What types of visualizations can you create with combined data from the combined data?

The type of visualization you choose will depend on the type of data you are working with and the insights you want to gain from it, which include tables, charts, graphs, and maps.

Conclusion: How to Combine Direct Query Dataset with Single Excel File

That is it!

Simple, yeah? Yes, it is.

By following these steps, you can combine different Direct Query datasets with a single Excel file in Power BI and create a report that contains data from both sources.