Microsoft Issues On-Premises Data Gateway Update for Power BI

The updates to the Power BI business analytics tools include improved diagnostics and preview support versions for several SAP products.

Power BI

Microsoft's Power BI business analytics suite has gained several useful new features for its on-premises data gateway in its October update, including custom connectors support for Vertica applications and OAuth support for custom data connectors.

These updates, as well as several others, were announced recently by Arthi Ramasubramanian Iyer, the senior program manager for Power BI, in a post on the Microsoft Power BI Blog

Power BI is a suite of business analytics tools that can be used to analyze data and share insights among various users on customizable and rich dashboards on a wide range of devices.

The custom data connector updates provide additional options for using connectors with the on-premises data gateway, which originally gained the ability to use custom connectors back in July, wrote Iyer. The latest enhancements mean the on-premises data gateway now supports the OAuth internet protocol for custom data connectors as well as connectors used with Vertica data analytics applications, she wrote. The data connectors for Power BI enable users to connect to and access data from an application, service or data source in the Power BI Desktop.

Also included in the October Power BI update are public previews for new capabilities involving SAP HANA and SAP Business Warehouse Application Server. SAP HANA users will now be able to connect to SAP HANA using single sign-on (SSO) using the Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML) after installing the latest gateway, wrote Iyer. Previously users could only use SSO using the Kerberos network authentication protocol when connecting to data sources such as SAP HANA while in DirectQuery mode through Power BI.

The public preview for the gateway involving SAP Business Warehouse Application Server will now enable users to use Kerberos-constrained SSO when publishing DirectQuery-based reports on top of SAP Business Warehouse Application Server data, according to Iyer.

The improved diagnostics for the Power BI on-premises data gateway includes service logs that are now categorized into three buckets for easier issue diagnosis—information, error and network, wrote Iyer. "This will provide a better troubleshooting experience allowing you to focus on a specific area depending on the error/issue. There is also an option to change the number of log files to retain in each category."

The mashup engine used in the latest update is the same version as the Power BI Desktop update released earlier in October to ensure that reports published to the Power BI Service will go through the same query execution logic/runtime as in the latest Power BI Desktop version, wrote Iyer. Some beta connectors, however, are still not supported outside of the Power BI Desktop.

The latest Power BI October on-premises data gateway update (build number: 3000.0.144.3) can be downloaded immediately from Microsoft, as can an optional Personal Mode version.