Wednesday 27 December 2023

What data sources can you connect to Power BI? Power BI interview questions and answers 166

What data sources can you connect to Power BI?

The good news is, Power BI offers incredible flexibility when it comes to connecting to data sources! Your options are vast and varied, catering to diverse data locations and structures. Here's a breakdown of the data sources you can connect to:

1. Cloud Data Sources:

  • Azure Services: Seamlessly connect to a wide range of Azure services like Azure SQL Database, Azure Synapse Analytics, Azure SQL Server on Azure VMs, Azure HDInsight, Azure Blob Storage, and more.

  • Other Cloud Services: Connect to popular cloud services like Salesforce, Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, Marketo, etc.

2. On-premises Data Sources:

  • Databases: Connect to traditional databases like SQL Server, Oracle, MySQL, PostgreSQL, etc.

  • Files: Import data from Excel spreadsheets, CSV files, text files, JSON files, etc.

  • Other Sources: Connect to on-premises applications, services, and data APIs through custom connectors or gateways.

3. Online Services:

  • Web and OData Feeds: Extract data directly from websites and open-source data providers through web data connectors.

  • Public Data Sources: Access readily available public datasets from government agencies, research institutions, and other organizations.

4. Advanced Data Sources:

  • Big Data Sources: Connect to Hadoop clusters, Spark clusters, and other big data platforms through dedicated connectors.

  • Real-time Data Sources: Access live data feeds from sensors, IoT devices, and streaming platforms in real-time.


  • Power BI Desktop offers direct connections to many data sources.

  • Power BI service requires gateways for connecting to on-premises data sources.

  • The list of available data connectors is constantly expanding.

To explore the specific data sources you can connect to, check out the following resources:

Remember, this is just a glimpse into the world of Power BI data connections. If you have a specific data source you're interested in connecting to, feel free to ask, and I'll help you find the best approach!

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