Innovation Junction

Power BI Architecture
The Power BI Architecture. And 5 FAQs

Power BI is a Business Intelligence facility that can help companies gain a competitive advantage. Power BI tools are components of this online data visualization and analytics platform that allow companies to analyze data quickly, identify trends and make intelligent decisions accordingly. Power BI architecture is the structure that the entire Power Bi concept stands on, and defines the way it has been designed and created. Understanding the architecture, and knowing the tools and services it offers, helps users create interactive dashboards, reports, and visualizations. It was developed by Microsoft and is used by companies across the globe. It’s a perfect way out for businesses wanting to improve their decision-making processes by gaining insights into their operations and accessing more accurate data than they have been able to access previously. 

Table of Content:

  1. What is the Power Bi Architecture?
  2. What is a Power BI architecture diagram? 
  3. What are the components of Power BI architecture? 
  4. 5 FAQs

What is the Power BI architecture? 

Power BI architecture is the framework that defines the working boundaries and relationships of the various components of Power Bi and its various services and tools. It lets users create data analysis systems that help synthesize data and visualize it in a useful manner and make it actionable. Power BI is a cloud-based data analytics platform that combines the power of Microsoft’s machine learning, cloud computing, and business intelligence capabilities to provide users with powerful and actionable analytical capabilities and insights from the data. 

The architecture has several parts; the first part is the cloud-based Power Bi Service, which is the main engine where all the computations take place, in case one is using the open network. This is where the data is fed, the rules for operating on the data are fed and this is where the results are dispatched to the end-user, after data has been acted upon as per the fed rules. This is programmed to be so by the Power Bi Professional who directly connects to this service using the internet browser and database/s (on-premises/cloud-based) is/are connected using the Power Bi Gateway. The power bi Service has its own smaller architecture. The Power BI service architecture is a cloud-based collection of the Microsoft Power BI tools that allows content creators to create reports without needing technical knowledge or expensive software licenses. Power BI service architecture also provides powerful analytical capabilities like machine learning algorithms without requiring specialized programming skills to implement these features in other solutions like Tableau (which uses Python as its primary programming language). The Power BI service architecture runs on Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure and hosts all of your data to be accessed anywhere by users with access to the Power BI website or mobile app (available for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone 8/10). The Power BI service architecture also hosts dashboards created in Power BI Desktop to be viewed online. It is a complete solution in itself and can be accessed by anyone wanting to be part of a ‘fully online’ system. Its use is browser-based.

Unlike the browser-based online (cloud) version of things, the next part is the local part (on-premise) where the Power Bi Professional maintains the architecture on a computer. The interface that they use to access the entire framework is called the Power bi Report Server (using the Power Bi Desktop interface). The access to the Power Bi Report Server, which is a scaled-down version of the main Power Bi Service, provides the facilities for the programmer to do their job of using the Power Bi system effectively locally. In this case, the server is on-premise and not in the cloud. This is a closed system which need not be connected to the internet for public consumption but can certainly be connected for closed user access via the internet/intranet, and is mostly intended to provide service to a clearly defined boundary of audience. The designer decides what data is to be used, how it is to be acted upon, and what will be the output. The creation of the desired reporting structure and the various resultant visuals that will be presented to the end-user are planned, decided upon and rules set by the professional inside the confines of the shell that a closed system such as this Report Server represents. This is called using the Power-Bi architecture off-cloud in a way.

The third part is the data storage place: data can be stored on-premises and connected with the online system (Power Bi Service, the main engine). It can also be stored in the cloud and connected to the Power Bi system. The Power Bi Gateway comes into play here as it facilitates the interfacing of the databases with the main service. The Gateway is not required to be used in case one is using on-premises architecture. In such a case, it is simpler and less cumbersome to connect the database with the processing engine (the server) as both are part of a closed group.

What is a Power BI architecture diagram? 

  It is the pictorial representation of the Power Bi Architecture. The overall schematic of the architecture is depicted in the diagram below. It shows the relationship of the various parts of the entire concept, and how they are interrelated. It tells about the physical location boundaries (where each part is or can be located), how these parts talk to each other, what their action boundaries are, how they respond and what they respond with. The three parts explained above are depicted here with their various dataflows and directions of dataflow. 



The power of Power BI architecture is its ability to integrate with other systems such as Salesforce and Microsoft Office 365. In addition, the Microsoft Power BI tools allow users to pull in data from multiple sources into a single dashboard, where they can get insights into their business at any given moment. As a result, companies can make improved decisions about their plans for marketing, sales, hiring, accounting, costs, and profits. They can also address customer care problems with correct, relevant, critical, and intelligent information at their fingertips. 

What are the components of Power BI architecture?

With Power BI tools being the lifeline of the present business world, it becomes essential to study which components (also sometimes called power bi tools) together result in the successful building of this model through the Microsoft Power BI architecture. Given below are the components of Power BI architecture: 

Data sources 

Data sources are the origin of your data in the Power BI architecture diagram. The first step in creating a Power BI report is to connect it to some data source. This can be a database, an Excel spreadsheet, or something else. These can be structured and unstructured datasets stored in a variety of formats. You can use Power Query to connect to different data sources, including Excel files, SQL databases, Azure Blob storage, etc. 

Power BI Desktop 

Power BI Desktop, Power BI Visualization tools

Power BI Desktop is a Power BI tool that you’ll use to create reports, visualizations through Power BI Visualization tools, and dashboards from your data once data is imported into Power BI. It is part of the on-premise architecture. It is a part of the Power Bi Report Server (discussed next). It is an application that enables you to create reports and analysis tools based on your data sources. It allows you to connect with multiple data sources and create custom queries. You can generate reports and visualizations based on those queries as well. It’s similar to Excel in that it has a spreadsheet-like interface where you can drag and drop elements onto a canvas and format them using tools like colors and fonts. 

Power BI report server 

The next part of the on-premise Power BI architecture is called the report server—this is where your content lives once it’s been published online. You’ll see your work here after creating reports from scratch. This component allows you to create reports that can be shared with other users in your organization without worrying about security or confidentiality concerns. It keeps all of these sensitive details away from prying eyes. 

Power BI gateway architecture 

The Power BI gateway architecture is a construct that runs in the Azure cloud and provides an interface between your organization’s data sources and the Power BI service. It can connect to a broad spectrum of data sources, including SQL Server databases, Excel workbooks, and Hadoop clusters. Power BI gateway architecture also provides security for your Power BI environment by encrypting all traffic between it and your data sources. 

Power BI Mobile 

Power BI Mobile

This is a mobile facility for viewing and interacting with dashboards. It’s available as an app for Android and iOS devices or as a browser-based app that can run from any device with a browser. You can also embed reports from the app into your website or other applications. 

Power BI Embedded 

This lets you embed Power BI dashboards in your applications or websites using HTML5, JavaScript, or React Native code snippets. It works on Windows 10 and Windows 10 Mobile devices and iOS devices running iOS 10 or later versions of iOS operating systems. In addition, it gives a more interactive experience for its users. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

1. What is Power BI architecture? 

Power BI architecture is a system developed by Microsoft to help in data analysis, management, and its visualization for easy interpretation. It includes Power BI tools, which are the applications that make it possible for you to create reports, dashboards, and visualizations. 

2. How do you add a diagram in Power BI? 

There are two ways to add a diagram in Power BI with the help of Power BI visualization tools

1. The foremost manner is to use the Report Canvas. 

2. The second way is to drag fields from the right side to the visualization pane. 

3. What are the three elements of Power BI designed? 

Power BI tools have three main elements: Power BI Desktop, Power BI Service, and the Power BI Mobile app. 

Power BI Desktop is a desktop application that you can use to build visualizations from your data. You can also publish these visualizations to a Power BI Service account, where they will be available for anyone with access to the account to view and interact with. The service also allows you to share reports with other organizations or individuals outside of your account and create dashboards with multiple visualizations based on different datasets. 

Power BI Service stores all data connections, reports, dashboards, and datasets. Reports are stored in tiles and dashboards as pages that can be easily shared or embedded into other websites via embed codes or APIs. Data connections are made through Data Catalogs, where you can import from on-premises servers or public cloud services like Azure SQL Database and Azure SQL Data Warehouse.

Power BI Mobile App for iOS and Android devices allows you to view dashboards from any location with an internet connection. 

4. Is Power BI frontend or backend? 

Microsoft Power BI tool can be used as a frontend and backend application. One may visualize data in various formats, including charts, tables, maps, sparklines, or custom objects. This means using it as a frontend. Using Power BI as a backend application means using it as a database for storing and managing information relevant to organizational processes. 

5. Is Power BI a tool or software? 

Power BI is a cloud-based software that requires you to log in to your account and use it online. Facilities in the Power bi framework, known as Power BI tools, are tools that are categorized in the ‘data visualization tools’ category. This means you can visualize your data in different ways and display it more appealingly.

Power Bi Tools
Important Power Bi Tools of its Architecture. And 6 FAQs

Microsoft Power BI tools are a set of facilities inside the Power Bi architecture framework that help implement the entire paradigm of data and its analysis effectively. Power BI tools allow users to create interactive dashboards and reports to clearly and easily understand their data. In this article, we will inform you in detail about the various Power bi tools. We will also talk about the Cortana feature of Windows and how Power bi tools can integrate with Cortana to give a tremendous uplift to the user experience.

Table of content:

  1. What are Power BI tools? 
  2. The working mechanism of Microsoft Power BI tools
  3. What are Power BI external tools? 
  4. Types of external tools in Power BI 
  5. How to enable external tools in Power BI? 
  6. How does a Power BI tool fit in the Cortana Intelligence architecture? 
  7. What is Cortana?
  8. Integration of Power BI and Cortana

What are Power BI tools? 

Power BI tools are currently used by over 70% of the Fortune 500 companies, including Amazon, AT&T, Coca-Cola, Ford Motor Company, and Unilever. These companies have also incorporated Power BI tools into their internal processes to make better business decisions based on real-time information. They are listed as below:

  1. Power Query is the facility for importing data from existing sources and transforming/refining the data into a format appropriate for analysis.
  2. Power Pivot is the technique for analyzing the data that has been imported and creating the desired data model. 
  3. Power View is the facility for implementing the visualization actions and interacting with the Power Pivot model.
  4. Power Desktop is the cocoon in which the above 3 are found and worked on.
  5. Power Map is the facility of importing information from the database onto Bing Maps for the accurate location of an address.
  6. Power QnA is the verbal assistant that can be programmed into a Power Bi project for providing results by listening to voice commands.

Some of the features of Power BI tools include: 

Easy to use dashboards and reports:

With the Microsoft Power BI tool, you can create reports and dashboards that allow you to analyze your data with just a few clicks. You can also share those reports or collaborate with others to work on them together. 

A wide range of data sources:

You can connect to many different databases or other systems using Power BI Desktop or Microsoft Excel through the Power Query feature. It enables you to import all kinds of information into one place for easy use of the powerful Power BI architecture

Real-time updates:

With real-time updates from various sources such as social media feeds or web services like Twitter feeds, you can see what’s happening now. It is all thanks to the ease of use of the Microsoft Power BI tools.

The working mechanism of Microsoft Power BI tools

Microsoft Power BI tools.

After analyzing the various components of the Power BI tool, given below is the working mechanism that details the functioning of the tools. It allows you to connect to a wide range of data sources, giving you the ability to access the data you need from wherever it is located. Furthermore, you can easily connect to any data source with the ‘get data’ feature, making it quick and easy to get the data you need to power your BI reports and dashboards. 


Users can install Power BI on their local machine and use it. This option is best for enterprise-level businesses with dedicated IT teams, as it requires more maintenance than the cloud option. On-premise Power BI uses SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) as its data warehouse, and users must have access to the SSAS server to use it. Microsoft licenses Power BI, and users can download the software from Microsoft’s website. 

On – cloud 

Users can opt for the cloud-based version of Power BI, hosted by Microsoft Azure. This option may require less maintenance than an on-premise installation but requires more technical knowledge of cloud computing systems than an on-premise installation does. Power BI uses Azure SQL Database as its data warehouse on the cloud. All users must have access to an Azure account to use this version of Power BI. Users can also purchase an enterprise license for Power BI if they wish for access and support from Microsoft or other third-party vendors. 

What are Power BI external tools? 

External tools are external software or services that Power BI uses to help you create and manage your data models. In addition, they enable you to elevate the functionality of your reports and dashboards by integrating with other applications. Thus, Power BI external tools are add-ons that extend Power BI’s functionality. 

Types of external tools in Power BI 

Power BI includes a collection of Power BI external tools that you can use to connect with other applications and services. One can use them to enhance their data analysis. You can use this feature to create customized visualizations that aren’t available in Power BI but might be helpful for your business needs

Semantic modeling 

Semantic modeling tools help you create a semantic model or a data structure containing information about the relationships between your data. You can use this to create reports that are easier to read and understand or create more complex analyses in Power BI. Semantic modeling tools allow you to create and manage your data structure, like a database schema or a taxonomy. 

Data analysis tools

data analysis

Data analysis tools include predictive analytic models and time series analysis. These can be used for data analysis, such as querying and visualizing data in Excel or another application, creating a custom report, or using Power Query to import data from multiple sources into Power BI. These tools can help you visualize your data in different ways than what’s possible within Power BI itself. 

Miscellaneous tools 

Miscellaneous tools provide other helpful functions, like connecting a social media account or creating a pivot table without loading data into Power BI. But, these tools don’t fit into any other category, such as Power BI mapping tools and APIs for connecting to your data source. It includes embedding content from other applications or creating a custom model using R scripts or SQL queries. 

Custom tools 

Custom Power BI tools allow you to create custom visualizations, reports, dashboard tiles, apps, and more that you can share with others or use yourself! In addition, these custom elements will enable you to further define your data by adding new fields and filters, which could help work with large datasets. 

How to enable external tools in Power BI? 

One of the key features of Power BI tools is its ability to integrate with external data sources and tools easily. The Power BI platform provides a set of well-defined APIs that enable developers to connect Power BI to external data sources and tools easily. Additionally, Power BI provides a set of built-in connectors that enable users to connect to various popular data sources and tools. The Power BI platform’s external data integration capabilities allow users to easily connect to and analyze multiple sources. This makes Power BI an ideal platform for building data-driven applications and solutions through Power BI external tools

To enable Power BI external tools, click Tools > Options > External Tools and click the Enable External Tools checkbox. You can also opt to utilize your system’s default browser or a specific browser as your default web browser. 

When you enable Power BI external tools, they’re available in all published reports and dashboards. So, for example, if you create a report that uses an Excel workbook as an external data source and then publish it to the Power BI service, other users will use the same Excel workbook when they open that report. 

If you wish to utilize distinguished versions of a Power BI external tool with different reports or dashboards, you must publish each version separately. 

How does a Power BI tool fit in the Cortana Intelligence architecture? 

The scheduled collaboration allows Cortana to provide tailored recommendations based on what you’re doing in Power BI. For example, suppose you open up a report about sales performance for the last quarter. In that case, Cortana might recommend related reports about revenue projections or customer satisfaction surveys to make better decisions about how your company should proceed forward into the future. We’ll look at how the Cortana Intelligence Suite integrates with Power BI in the paragraphs ahead. This popular business intelligence platform allows users to explore and analyze data from a variety of sources: 

What is Cortana? 

Cortana is Microsoft’s intelligent personal assistant. Cortana is powered by machine learning, enabling it to get to know you and your interests over time to provide helpful information and services. The Cortana Intelligence Suite is Microsoft’s framework for building AI-powered solutions for business. One can access Cortana by saying “Hey Cortana” or clicking the microphone icon on the taskbar. Cortana can also be used in apps and websites as part of Microsoft Edge and other products. It is a voice-activated intelligent personal assistant that can help you stay productive by providing information and reminders and completing tasks for you. Cortana is available on Windows 10 computers (including IoT devices), iOS and Android mobile devices, Xbox One, and the Harman Kardon Invoke smart speaker. It’s designed to help you get things done using your voice and machine learning to learn more about how you interact with your device. It can also connect to other services, like Bing search, Office 365, and Power BI. 

Integration of Power BI and Cortana 

Power BI tools and cortana

Power BI tool was designed from the ground up to be a cloud-based platform that allows users to share their data across multiple applications and devices. This makes it easy for people who work in different locations or on different devices (such as tablets) to collaborate on projects without relying on email or other tools designed for collaboration. 

Therefore, one way to use Cortana Intelligence Suite is to integrate Power BI tools. This integration allows users to create custom models using Power BI Desktop and then publish them as web services consumed by Cortana Analytics. With this integration, you can use the same data sources in both systems, making sharing insights between teams and departments easier. 

The integration of the Power BI tool with Cortana provides users with an intuitive, intelligent way to explore and analyze data. Users can ask Cortana questions in natural languages, such as “What were my sales yesterday?” or “How many customers are there?” The system will respond by providing relevant information. The system learns from each user’s interactions, making it more accurate over time. In addition, you can use Cortana Intelligence Suite to build custom models that predict and analyze data from various sources, including those you get from third-party data providers. 

Final words 

Power BI tools also make it easy for companies to look at multiple metrics at once because you don’t have to worry about having numerous dashboards or ensuring all the data is stored in a single place. Instead, you can create new reports as needed without worrying whether or not other people will be able to understand what they’re seeing when they look at your dashboard. Another reason why companies are starting to use Power BI is that it has become easier than ever before. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

1. What are the components of the Power BI tool? 

Power BI is a suite of business intelligence tools designed to help individuals and companies interpret and analyze data. The product is composed of six main elements as listed below:

  • Power Query 
  • Power Pivot 
  • Power View 
  • Power Desktop 
  • Power Map 
  • Powe QnA 

2. What programming language are Power BI tools written in? 

Microsoft Power BI tool is a business intelligence tool that allows users to visualize and analyze data. It is written in DAX and M. 

3. What are the five building blocks of Microsoft Power BI tools? 

The five building blocks of Microsoft power Bi tools are:

  1. Dashboards
  2. Datasets
  3. Visualisations
  4. Reports
  5. Tiles

4. What is the backend for the Microsoft Power BI tool? 

Microsoft Power BI tool is processed by the backend server in Microsoft Azure Cloud Services for high-security compliance and performance. Additionally, power BI connects to many tools to collect data, including Excel spreadsheets, Google Spreadsheets,, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. 

5. How do you structure data in the Microsoft Power BI tool? 

In Power BI, one can structure data in a flat table. Microsoft Power BI is a powerful tool for analyzing and visualizing data. When you’re creating a flat table in Power BI, you can structure your data in several ways. You can add additional columns to your table, or you can create multiple tables that are connected by common key values. 

One common way to structure data in a flat table in Power BI is to add columns with additional metadata about each row. For example, if you have customer information stored as a single column of text, you might want to separate the names and addresses of each customer into separate columns. This allows you to perform queries on specific information within your dataset without having to parse through all of the rows. 

Another way to structure data in a flat table in Power BI is by creating multiple tables that share common keys or values. For example, if you have sales data stored as a single column of numbers representing sales made by each employee during the month, it might be useful for analysis purposes if each employee’s sales were separated out into their own table so that they could be compared against one another or grouped together by region or product type. 

6. Is Power BI a free tool? 

Power BI tools are free to the extent that you can use them to analyze data from multiple sources, including Excel and databases. You can also share the reports acquired with other people and collaborate on dashboards. Microsoft Power BI tool is a business intelligence tool available in the cloud and for download. Though, Microsoft Power BI is also available as a paid premium tool with other top-notch features.