Visualizing Data – PowerBI Connector

Bring out visual reports and analyzes of your organization's business information that you have designed in the Power BI software to signage displays with the help of the Power BI Connector.

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The connector allows you to select a dashboard or report to display, as well as the display duration of the report pages. Data is displayed on iDiD displays using an HTML element, to which the report view is directed using a URL created with the Connector.

NB! The use of this HTML element is only allowed in the iDiD digital signage system.


Implementing the Power BI Connector

Start implementing the Power BI Connector at https://powerbi.idid.fi.

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If you are using the Power BI Connector for the first time, first register using your Power BI username and password. You will receive a confirmation of this in your e-mail, which also includes your Client ID.

For subsequent logins, you can use your Client ID to login.

If you want to limit the displayed information to certain locations, fill in Allowed IP/CIDR separated by a slash (/).

When you enter your username, the page will automatically redirect you to the Microsoft login page.

If you are already logged in with your company user, you can proceed directly to accept the account merging. Otherwise, select Use another account and sign in with the username associated with your organization's Power BI account.



Once you're signed in, you'll need to agree to connect the Connector to your Power BI account. Click Accept to accept the merge.



When the accounts are connected, you can edit the data in the Power BI reports to be presented on the signage displays.

NB! If you use Azure AD multi-factor authentication, the Connector cannot merge the accounts and therefore skips the merging step. In this case, the Connector goes directly to creating the report, but cannot retrieve information from PowerBI.

Alternatively, you can create a separate signage display user in PowerBI without multi-factor authentication. In order to be able to display shared reports and dashboards with the user, they should also have a Pro license. Then use the credentials of this user to bring the desired reports to the iDiD displays.


Creating a Report

Define what is to be presented in the reports using the menu in the connector and copy the address of the input from the field and paste it into the URL field of your HTML element. As you define the settings, you can see the changes in real time in the preview below the menu.

You can display reports or dashboards on the screen according to the analytics you create in Power BI. Reports contain graphs created from data sets on one or more pages, while dashboards can contain graphs brought together from several different reports that update in real time as the data sets change.

Start by selecting the workspace whose analytics you want to publish.


Report: Select the report you want to display on the screen.

Pages: If the report you selected has multiple pages, you can select only a portion of them to display. If you do not select pages, all pages of the report will be displayed.

Interval: If the report has multiple pages, the interval determines how long a single report is displayed. Specify the interval in seconds.

  • NB! Take into account the total duration of the report pages when you define the duration of the content in the iDiD Manager. For example, content with a five-page report with a 10-second interval should have a duration of 50 seconds to allow each page of the report to appear during the presentation of the content.

Filtering Report

Each report in Power BI has its own unique URL. If you want to filter data from the report, you can do so by adding filter parameters to the end of the address created with the Connector.

Create a filter using data from Power BI. Microsoft's instructions in English for filtering the report using URL query string parameters can be found on the Microsoft documentation website here.

  1. Define and test the filter parameters, if necessary, first in Power BI according to the structure of the data.
  2. Add the filter data to the end of the URL you created with the Power BI Connector, for example <exampleurl>&filter=Table/Field eq 'value'
    • Note that the case of Table and Field names is significant, while in the value field it is not.

 

Add filters to the report displayed in iDiD:

  1. Create the desired Power BI report with the iDiD Connector according to the instructions above.
  2. Add a filter after the URL you created with the Connector using the filter parameter. Separate the filters with an ampersand (&) from the base address. For example https://powerbi.idid.fi/report/?cid=xxxxxxxxx&pages=2&i=10&filter=Data/ProjektiId eq '12345'

Creating a dashboard


Dashboard: Select the dashboard you want to display on the screen.

Tile: To show an individual tile in the dashboard, select it under Tile.

The selections are updated immediately, and the reports are shown as a preview below the menu. You can also click Open to view the reports full-page in a new tab.


Adding PowerBI Content to iDiD

  1. Create a new content where you want to display the report. Create or select an HTML element.
  2. Copy the report URL from the field under the Power BI Connector menus and paste it into the address field of the HTML element.

Finally, save your created content. Ready!


Firewall openings required by PowerBI Connector

 

NB! For the PowerBI Connector, network connections to Microsoft's PowerBI services must be opened through the firewall, so that the data can also reach the signage display.

Documentation about the openings required by PowerBI: https://docs.microsoft.com/fi-fi/power-bi/power-bi-whitelist-urls.

For PowerBI, you would need to open at least the following ports:

From the General site usage section:

  • *.analysis.windows.net           TCP 443
  • *.pbidedicated.windows.net TCP 443
  • app.powerbi.com                      TCP 443
  • dc.services.visualstudio.com TCP 443


and possibly (depending on the material presented):

  • dynmsg.modpim.com              TCP 443
  • nps.onyx.azure.net                   TCP 443

From the Getting data section

  • appsource.microsoft.com      TCP 443
  • *.s-microsoft.com                     TCP 443


If reports use Excel data sources or Custom Visuals material (maps, etc.), other openings may also be needed in the firewall - these can be determined on a case-by-case basis if necessary.