Power View 101 – Fast Reporting on the Edge

This will be a series of posts around Power View and building reports. 
This is Part 1. We are going to explore Power View requirements for SharePoint and Excel 2013.  We will also demonstrate how to do a basic data model import using SQL Azure Data.

In Part 2(which will be published in 2-3 weeks), we will show one how to create a basic table.  We will create a basic report.

In Part 3, we will work with filters, slicers and highlights.

In Part 4, we will explore maps and bubble charts.

This week we are talking about the basics of using Power View in a SharePoint environment, PowerPivot or Excel 2013. There are a number of options one can
choose from when working with Power View. We work with a number of clients that are heavy SharePoint or Excel users. They live to export data from a database
or import data from a text file or Azure Data. Then, import it into Excel to massage, manipulate, converge and report on data. Ultimately, they want to
write reports with this data, and they want to do it fast!!! Did we mention fast?

Traditionally reporting can be very fancy but it is not always fast. And most users, analysts or information workers rarely want to wait. And that is why we are going to
start looking at Power View.

Let’s start with Power View 101.

What is Power View? Power View provides intuitive ad-hoc reporting for business users such as data analysts, business decision makers, and information workers.

A Power View report is always presentable –one can explore data and present it at any time, because it is working with real data. It provides reading and full-screen presentation modes, in which the ribbon and other design tools are hidden to focus on the visualizations. However, the report is still fully interactive, with filtering and highlighting capability.

One can also export a Power View report to PowerPoint. Each view in Power View becomes a separate PowerPoint slide.

How cool does Power View sound? Here is how cool it looks. This is a Power View Pie Chart Report.


What does Power View require to work? One can utilize Power View in an enterprise solution such as SharePoint.  Or if one has Office 2013, one can use it in Excel 2013. One can easily create and
interact with views of data from data models based on PowerPivot workbooks or tabular models deployed to SQL Server 2012 Analysis Services (SSAS) instances.
Power View is a browser-based Silverlight application launched from SharePoint Server 2010.

If you would like to get started with Power View with a SharePoint environment, this is a great article to use for setup. For this post, we are going to use Power View in Excel 2013.



Let’s get started.

1. Open Excel 2013. (In order to verify what version of Office one are currently running, follow this link.)

2.  Click on the Insert Tab

3.  Click on Power View. It looks like this.

            (If one see Power View but it is greyed out, one will need to enable it.)

4. Ok, now we need to import data. After all interactive data exploration is what Power View is all about.

(Power View and Power Pivot are only available in the Office Professional Plus and Office 365 Professional Plus editions.)

5.  For this example, use the following data.  (I am using SQL Windows Azure Data from the Marketplace.)

The next steps will walk one through importing the data into Excel.

6. In Excel, on the PowerPivot tab > Manage Data Model.

Don’t see a PowerPivot tab? Start PowerPivot in
Excel 2013 add-in

  1. Click Get External
    > From Data Service > From Windows Azure Marketplace.
  2. In the Table
    Import Wizard, under Type > Data, and under Price > Free
  3. Search for
    “air carriers”.
  4. Next to US
    Air Carrier Delays
    , click Subscribe.
  5. Sign in with a
    Microsoft account. If one don’t have one, follow the steps to create one.

This window shows some sample data.

  1. Scroll to the
    end of the sample data and click Select Query.
  2. One can type a
    friendly name for the connection, and then click Next.
  3. Click Preview
    and Filter
  4. In this window one can pick which columns one want to
    import, by unchecking the check boxes. We want all of them, so click OK,
    and then click Finish.

          The download process may take some time. The dataset has more   than 2.4 million rows.

  1. Click OK.
  2. Now you have imported data! Congrats!

Questions or comments?








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