Join Gini von Courter for an in-depth discussion in this video What you need for this course, part of Learn Microsoft Power BI Desktop: The Basics.
- Here's what you'll need to be successful in this course. First, there are some hardware recommendations and you'll want to pay attention to these because it's frustrating to try to use a tool like Power BI if you don't have the resources that are required. For example, in terms of available RAM, 1.5 gigabyte or better is recommended. There's a minimum of one gigabyte, but again, if you're working with data models of any size, you'll quickly get frustrated with the limitations of one gigabyte of available RAM, so 1.5 or better, and in fact, when I started working with Power BI, I actually made a significant upgrade to my available RAM and I have eight gigabytes available.
CPU, one gigahertz or faster. And your display, 1440 by 900, or if you're in a 16 by 9 orientation, 1600 by 900, and, this one's actually a little bit amusing because if you don't have a large enough display, there will be controls that will be being displayed, but you won't be able to see them on your screen. So you'll want to make sure that your display is set with a screen resolution of 1440 by 900 or better. In terms of software, Power BI Desktop is made to run on Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008, release 2 or later.
You'll need .NET 4.5 installed, and Internet Explorer 10, 11, and so on. And finally, you'll need Power BI Desktop, which is a free download from Microsoft, and I'll show you how to install and launch that in just a little bit. In terms of data skills, I assume that you know some things about how to work with data, because Power BI is all about shaping and transforming and manipulating data, and then reporting on it.
So if you were working in Excel, for example, and knew how to enter, edit, and format text and numbers; how to use the table commands, like Format as Table; how to find and replace; how to sort and filter data, and how to insert and format charts; if these are comfortable skills for you in Excel, these are the kind of skills that you'll want to bring to Power BI Desktop. If you need help with any of those, you'll find them in the Excel 2016 Essential Training course on Lynda.com, or, if you'd like to simply focus on data, Excel 2013: Managing and Analyzing Data is another great course that will help you with that skill set.
These are the specifications for the hardware, software, and skills or experiences that you'll want to have to be successful in this course.
- Installing and launching Power BI Desktop
- Connecting to Excel and CSV files
- Connecting to a database or web data
- Querying data
- Transforming data
- Creating relationship between tables
- Merging data
- Creating visualizations and reports
- Publishing to the Power BI service
- Sharing and unsharing reports