Power BI Sentinel: Backup, Documentation, Change Tracking And Lineage Tracking For Power BI

A few weeks ago at SQLBits I had a demo of a very interesting new tool for Power BI users called Power BI Sentinel. The website, with all the details, is here:

https://www.powerbisentinel.com

It helps solve several problems that everyone managing a Power BI deployment has to deal with. It can:

  • Backup reports and datasets (as .pbix files) direct from your App Workspaces to Azure Blob storage on a schedule, so you are able to access earlier versions and roll back if you need to.
  • Generate documentation on your datasets, including the DAX calculations used.
  • Identify what visuals and filters have changed in different versions of a report, and when those changes took place.
  • Track which data sources are used by which datasets and, in turn, which reports use those datasets.

image

It’s still a very new tool and adding functionality all the time; there is also a lot of functionality that you’d want from a tool like this that Microsoft hasn’t built the APIs to support yet. It’s definitely worth checking out though and (in my opinion) quite reasonably priced. I dare say Microsoft will build some of this functionality into Power BI at some point, but I don’t know what it will deliver exactly or when that will happen.

Full disclosure: I’ve known the owners of the company for a long time through their involvement with the UK SQL Server and Power BI community, and I was given a free licence for Power BI Sentinel by them.

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