The internals of a PBIX file and how pbi-tools helps make sense of it all

The PBIX file is the fundamental building block when it comes to Power BI development. You may have heard that PBIX files are simply ZIP files with an internal file structure, however, very little is publicly known beyond that.

Mathias, for his work on pbi-tools, has spent years deciphering the (undocumented) PBIX internals. Those efforts have led to pbi-tools, today the only end-to-end source control solution for Power BI development.

This session will explain what's inside a PBIX file and how everything is linked together. Using the folder structure view of a PBIX file provided by pbi-tools, all of the components (Model, Report, Queries, Resources, Settings) will be looked at in detail. You will understand how to track changes made to a PBIX file using Power BI Desktop, what those changes mean, and how to apply similar changes offline, targeting the pbi-tools folder structure only.

Using that understanding, the session will further look into more advanced automation scenarios which become viable once the PBIX internals are known and provide various examples. This session is likely to inspire you to take your Power BI projects to new levels of automation!

Mathias Thierbach

Head of Finance Systems at YouGov Plc and Developer of pbi-tools

London, United Kingdom

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