Mastering Power BI Update

Mastering Power BI will likely be published by the end of March or April at the latest. Amazon, Packt, and other sites may soon be updated to reflect this change.

Table of Contents

The following chapter titles and page counts are subject to change:

Mastering Microsoft Power BI

Per the above table, there’s both breadth and depth with approximately 600 pages across Power BI planning, design, development, management and administration topics. Therefore, the book lends itself as a reference guide to specific issues as well as a start-to-finish overview of the platform.

For example, it looks at data governance in the context of self-service and corporate or enterprise BI solutions and the migration between the two. It reviews hybrid deployment options with certain BI assets remaining fully on-premises with the Power BI Report Server while other projects leverage the Power BI service, perhaps via a managed On-premises data gateway cluster. It looks at the additional features provided by Analysis Services over Power BI datasets (even with Premium), advantages of Azure Analysis Services versus SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS), and how/where Power BI Premium capacity fits in these scenarios.

There are many diagrams and images, such as the scope of Power BI app workspaces, the allocation of Power BI Premium capacity to these workspaces, and Azure Active Directory security groups and conditional access policies. I tried to address many of the most important questions for longer term and larger-scale solutions such as import versus DirectQuery models, whether or not (or how) you should use M queries for data transformations, supporting tools for version control, metadata management, and development, project team roles and collaboration, how or when to scale up and or out, and much more (e.g. 150+ pages of report and dashboard visualization).

Book Description

The following description is also subject to change:

This book is intended for business intelligence professionals responsible for the design and development of Power BI content as well as managers, architects and administrators who oversee Power BI projects and deployments. The chapters flow from the planning of a Power BI project through the development and distribution of content to the administration of Power BI for an organization.

BI developers and advanced business analysts will learn how to create sustainable and impactful Power BI datasets, reports, and dashboards. This includes connecting to data sources, shaping and enhancing source data, and developing an analytical data model including row-level security and DAX measures. Additionally, top report and dashboard design and visualization practices are described using the latest features such as Bookmarks and the Power KPI visual.

BI managers and architects will learn how Power BI’s on-premises and cloud services work together such as with the On-premises data gateway. Managers will also learn how Power BI content can be staged, managed, and securely distributed via App Workspaces and Apps. Additionally, alternative deployment options available including the Power BI Report Server for an on-premises solution is explained. Moreover, the administrative and monitoring capabilities of Power BI are highlighted as well as options for scaling Power BI to meet changing workloads via Power BI Premium and Analysis Services.

This book is oriented toward medium and larger organizations from a corporate BI/IT perspective. For example, common IT concepts such as security groups, version control, metadata, and staged deployments across development, test, and production environments are emphasized. Some experience with Power BI, Office 365, Azure Active Directory, and the Microsoft Business Intelligence platform will be beneficial.  

By the end of this book, BI developers should be confident in the design practices and features to utilize in building Power BI content for their projects. Likewise, BI managers should be comfortable with Power BI project roles, lifecycles, and the licensing and administration of the Power BI deployment for their organization.


1) How is this different from the Power BI Cookbook?

Although there certainly are technical examples and development techniques, this book  generally steps back to focus on essential concepts and design decisions. The perspective of BI managers, architects and other stakeholders responsible for the overall environment and deployment, including self-service and corporate BI solutions, was prioritized. I believe it highlights the synergies of the different tools and associated skills and team processes/roles working together.

2) Will there be a code bundle?

Yes. This will include the Power BI Desktop files, DAX measure and M query expressions, SQL queries, and PowerShell scripts.

3) How current is it?

Top Power BI Desktop and service features from February such as slicer synchronization and pushing apps (automatic install) to end users have been included.

4) What’s next?

I’ll be presenting two sessions at the Data & BI Summit in April in addition to ongoing work at Frontline Analytics. I may well write again (e.g. 2nd Edition) or contribute to other books and whitepapers but Frontline is the priority.

If you or someone you know is committed to improving themselves as a Microsoft business intelligence professional, and you’re open to a change, feel welcome to send an email with a resume to


  1. Thank you for the hard work on these projects Brett. Enjoying the PowerBI cookbook and anxiously awaiting this title! Will you be posting any summaries or material from your Data and BI Summit presentations?


    1. Thanks Vinnie. I believe I’ll be able to send you and a few others a free ebook of the new title soon. Regarding the Summit presentations, I know my decks will be posted for event attendees after 4/17. After the event, I may use certain parts of the material in a few blog posts but I won’t be posting the same examples, slides, or a summary of this content. I’ll be presenting at SQL Saturday New York City in May (DAX Query Use Cases), however, and I’ll post/upload most or all material from this presentation.


      1. Great, looking forward to that, many thanks! I have some travel credit – I’ll take a look of when the May event is and determine if that’s feasible. Ive been wanting to make a (PASS related) trip out to the east coast. We have SQL Saturday Orange County in a few weeks.


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