Most BI tools allow connections to several databases and APIs. Microsoft Power BI is a very extensively used BI tool and PostgreSQL is a very popular database. With Power BI PostgreSQL integration, users gain access to real-time updates and insights from their PostgreSQL data.

The goal of this article is to outline the common methods used to connect PostgreSQL to Power BI to perform analytics and generate reports seamlessly. 

Note: Power BI PostgreSQL connection allows for Bi-directional data exchange between Power BI and PostgreSQL.

What is PostgreSQL?

PostgreSQL to Power BI

PostgreSQL is known to be one of the most advanced open-source databases. It is robust and very well suited for BI applications. It is scalable and has a great design. This is what makes it so popular in the market. You can download PostgreSQL here.

What is Power BI?

PostgreSQL to Power BI

Microsoft Power BI Desktop is a state-of-the-art Business Intelligence tool built for the data analyst. Using Power BI, you can connect to any data source and then transform and visualize the data. You can download Power BI Desktop here.

How To Connect PostgreSQL To Power BI?

The most straight forward method to connect PostgreSQL to Power BI is to click on ‘Get Data’ on the Home page of Power BI and pick a source. Unfortunately, when you try this, you will likely encounter an error informing you that the connector will need additional components.

Let us look at some of the most popular methods to how to connect PostgreSQL database to Power BI.

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Method 1: Using Npgsqs to connect PostgreSQL to Power BI

Step 1: Download and install Npgsql

Download and install as Administrator the latest version of Npgsql on your computer while enabling GAC Installation. Restart your computer and open your Power BI Desktop tool. Click on ‘Get Data’ and select ‘PostgreSQL database’.

PostgreSQL to Power BI: Get Data
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Step 2: Enter the Database information

Enter the Server name, Database name, User name, and Password. In the Navigator window, select the table you need and Load it.

PostgreSQL to Power BI
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Note: If your connection is not encrypted, you might get the following message.

PostgreSQL to Power BI

For secure connectivity, enable database encryption before connecting. Using unencrypted connections risks exposing sensitive data. Review the encryption configuration guide to implement security measures properly. If you understand and accept the risks, select OK to connect without encryption.

Step 3: Select the Database Information

To import data, use Navigator to locate the desired database information. Select Load to directly import the data or Transform Data to further process the data in Power Query Editor before loading.

You have now successfully connected PostgreSQL to Power BI.

If this does not work for you, try using an ODBC connection.

Method 2: Using An ODBC Connection for PostgreSQL to Power BI

Open Database Connectivity (ODBC) is a standard API for accessing DBMS. ODBC has been designed to be independent of databases and operating systems.

How do you connect PostgreSQL to Power BI Desktop using ODBC?

Step 1: Download and Install

First of all, download and install psqlODBC from the official site.

There are two setups you need to do next.  One from Power BI and another from PostgreSQL. After downloading and installing psqlODBC_x64, open Power BI Desktop and click on ‘Get Data’.

Step 2: Connect ODBC

Search for and select ODBC. Click on Connect.

Now when you have to select your Data Source, select None. In the connection string, enter the non-credential properties (Driver, Server, Port, and Database).

This is how the connection string looks like:

Driver={PostgreSQL ANSI(x64)}; Server=localhost; Port=5433; Database= my_database

Note: If you have already entered your credential information in the past, you might want to clear the permissions. To do this, go to Options and Settings, select Data source settings, and clear permissions.

Step 3: Select the Database

After this, on the credential screen, select Database and enter the Username and Password. Now you may select the table you want to work with, in the data structure.

If your database is located on the cloud, you have to configure the remote connection as well. This you have to do by editing the pga_hba.conf file and the postgresql.conf file.

This is how you should edit the pg_hba.conf file:

PostgreSQL to Power BI
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This is how you should edit the postgresql.conf file:

PostgreSQL to Power BI
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After editing these files, you have to restart PostgreSQL. From your cloud source, you can also restrict who can access the database using the IP address.

There is another interesting method for Windows Users.

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Method 3: Through The Configuration Of PostgreSQL And Power BI

In order to connect PostgreSQL to Power BI, you need to configure both of them.

Configuring PostgreSQL

You need first to edit the pg_hba.conf file :

sudo nano path/to/your/file/pg_hba.conf

You need to allow remote connections from a host and allow it to all databases. All PostgreSQL users and connections from anywhere around the world will be allowed. You can, of course, edit it according to your own requirements limiting the databases and range of your networks.

This is what your pg_hba.conf file should look like:

PostgreSQL to Power BI

Now you have to edit your postgresql.conf file.

You have to change the line ssl = true to ssl = false. Power BI by default only trusts applications that have the SSL certificate. To get the certificate, you need to change the SSL settings. You can avoid all of that by simply disabling SSL.

sudo nano path/of/your/file/postgresql.conf
ssl = false

Next, you need to restart PostgreSQL to inform it about the changes.

You can restart from the command line using this command:

sudo service postgresql restart

Configure Power BI

  • Open Power BI Desktop. Click on ‘Get data’ and choose the option ‘More’.
  • In the dialog box, select ‘PostgreSQL database’ under the database option and click ‘Connect’.
  • In the next dialog box, you can enter the server IP and the database name.
  • After this, in the final dialog box, you can enter the user name and the password and click on ‘Connect’.
  • In the ‘Navigator’ dialog, select and load the table you want to work with. Click on ‘OK’ if Power BI warns you about encryption.

Note that this method is for Windows Users.

Why to Integrate PostgreSQL to Power BI?

Integrating PostgreSQL with Power BI boosts PostgreSQL’s capabilities through Power BI’s data visualization and analytics. Connecting the databases allows the creation of interactive reports, dashboards, and visuals to provide valuable insights for data-driven decisions. PostgreSQL manages complex queries and diverse big datasets that integrate seamlessly with Power BI for comprehensive analysis.

Additionally, scheduling automated Power BI data refreshes from PostgreSQL ensures reports and visuals stay up-to-date with the latest database data without manual intervention. This saves time while providing decision-makers with the most current information.

Conclusion

In this tutorial, you have seen some of the most common ways to connect PostgreSQL to Power BI. The seamless compatibility between PostgreSQL Power BI services facilitates real-time analytics and comprehensive reporting. If you are dealing with multiple data sources, ranging from databases such as PostgreSQL to SaaS applications like Google and Facebook Ads, you might find it difficult to integrate all the disparate data. Extracting complex data from a diverse set of data sources can be a challenging task and this is where Hevo saves the day!

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Share your experiences connecting PostgreSQL to Power BI in the comments!

Nikhil Annadanam
Freelance Technical Content Writer, Hevo Data

Nikhil specializes in freelance writing within the data industry, delivering informative and engaging content related to data science by blending his problem solving ability.

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