Calculated Tables: The most important features in Power BI Desktop Semptember Update

First we will discuss the 44 features and then we will focus on Calculated Table

  • Report authoring

    • Report-Level filters: Filter that apply across all visualizations in all pages on your report
    • Drill UP/Down for column and scatter charts: It  is possible to define Drill Up/Down beahviours for column and scatter charts.
    • New page size and Page view options: This control can assign a different page size to each page within their report if desidered. Another options (page view) allow users to configure how pages should be rendered depending on the size of the report viewer.
    • Support for inserting shapes: User can now insert shpes in the canvas. Supported shapes include Rectangle, Oval, Line, Triangle and Arrow.
    • Fields pane improvements:
      • Search Box to make it easier to find fields by name.
      • Expand/collapse All to improve navigation when there are multiple tables in the fields pane
      • It is now possible to replace an item in the visualitazions pane by dragging another field on top of the existing one.Before this update users had to remove the previous field defore adding the new one.
      • Additional visualization formatting options
      • Color saturation values displayed in tooltips
  • Data Modelling

    • Calculated Tables: Great!!!! from this update we’re adding the ability to create Calculated Tables. Some of the common functions that can be used with Calculated Tables include:
      • Distinct
      • Crossjoin
      • Union
      • Naturalinnerjoin
      • Naturalleftouterjoin
      • Intersect
      • Calendar
      • CalendarAuto
    • Relationship view:
      • Create relationship via drag/drop between two tables in the diagram
      • Delete relationship in relationship view by selecting and hitting the delete key
      • Rename/delete tables and columns
    • Data view:

      • Copy table contents to clipboard
    • Field summarization:
      • Support for additional operations in the fields pane: median, standard deviation, and variance.
      • Default summarization: users can now customize the default summarization operation for any given field in their model
  • Data connectivity:

    • Support for On-Prem Spark distributions.
    • Support for SharePoint lists from non-English sites.
    • Exchange connector – Enhanced support, now allowing connections to multiple mailboxes.
    • Excel Workbook Connector – Automatic Column Type detection when importing .XLS files.
    • “Select Related Tables” option when connecting to database sources.
    • Enhanced Active Directory connector credentials, allowing alternate Windows Credentials.
    • Improved Function Invocation experience when loading functions from a data source (such as a database).
    • “Import Excel Workbook Contents” feature released last month now also supports external connections to Analysis Services tabular models.
    • New option to “Delete All” entries in the Data Source Settings dialog.
    • Option to “Enable Relationship Import during Refresh operations”
  • Data Transformations and Query Editor Improvements:

    • Copy to clipboard (available for cells/columns/tables).
    • Filter date columns by earliest/latest date (dynamic filter).
    • Extract min/max date/time value from a column.
    • Replace Values – Provision for specifying special characters.
    • “Detect Column Types” option to trigger type detection on demand.
    • “Refresh All Previews” to refresh all Query Editor previews with a single click.
    • Performance Improvements

We now focus on Calculated table

Calculated tables are similar to view in SQL serever. This are tables in the Data Model whose data source is a DAX expression that returns a table.  Imagine that you have already imported the Products dimension table from the AdventureWorksDW2012 into Data Model. In the Data tab you can see the new “New Table button”  show in figure below


Clicking the button we can enter a new table name and a DAX expression that returns the table show in figure below


“tables calculated”behave as “computed columns” are created when the data in the model is refreshed and after that behave like any other table so you can create relationships between calculated tables and other tables.

They do take up memory like other tables and cmputed columns, avoid using them disproportionately.


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