How to connect a SharePoint Excel File in Power BI without folder access

As businesses increasingly rely on data-driven decision-making, tools like Power BI have become indispensable. Power BI‘s power lies in its ability to connect to a plethora of data sources, from traditional databases to cloud-based services and more. One such data source is an Excel file hosted on SharePoint. While the process is relatively straightforward, there might be some confusion if you only have access to a specific file but not the entire folder. Let’s go through the steps to connect to a SharePoint Excel file as a data source in Power BI.

  1. Launching Power BI and Selecting ‘Get Data’:

The first step is to open Power BI and navigate to the ‘Home’ tab. Here, you’ll see an option labeled ‘Get Data’. Upon clicking this, a dropdown menu with various categories will appear. You should select ‘Web’ under the ‘Other’ category.

  1. Entering the SharePoint File URL:

A dialog box will open, prompting you to enter the URL of the SharePoint file. This URL is critical, so make sure it’s accurate.

For example, if your SharePoint URL looks like this:

https://contoso.sharepoint.com/:x:/r/sites/BI/Shared%20Documents/ExcelFile.xlsx?d=wed1f426c063b42cab9238160a2c3971a

You need to remove any query parameters (any part of the URL after and including a question mark, ‘?’) and replace “/:x:/r” with “/sites”. Thus, your URL should look something like this:

https://contoso.sharepoint.com/sites/BI/Shared%20Documents/ExcelFile.xlsx

Make sure your link ends with “.xlsx“, which signifies an Excel file.

  1. Connecting to the Data Source:

Once you’ve entered the URL, select the ‘Connect’ button.

  1. Authenticating Your Account:

Power BI may prompt you to authenticate. If this happens, select ‘Organizational account’, then ‘Sign in’, and enter your credentials.

  1. Navigating the Data:

Once you’re authenticated, the Navigator window will open. This interface allows you to select the specific table or data range you want to load into Power BI.

  1. Loading the Data:

The final step is to load the data into Power BI. Simply select the ‘Load’ button to do this.

Conclusion

Following these steps will allow you to connect to a SharePoint Excel file as a data source in Power BI. However, please keep in mind that this process assumes you have the necessary permissions to access the Excel file on SharePoint. If you do not, you’ll need to request access from the owner or administrator of the SharePoint site. Moreover, keep in mind that if the file moves, or if permissions change, you may need to update the data source in Power BI.

This is where Anyon Consulting can provide immense value. With a team of experts experienced in Power BI, SharePoint, and overall data management, we can help you navigate any complications and ensure a smooth, efficient data connection process. We can facilitate secure access to the required files, manage potential changes, and optimize the data extraction process to ensure your business leverages the maximum potential of Power BI and SharePoint.

Furthermore, Anyon Consulting provides training and support, empowering businesses to better understand these tools and how to harness their power. This level of expertise and support can significantly augment your business’s ability to make informed, data-driven decisions, boost efficiency, and drive growth. With Anyon Consulting by your side, you can navigate the complexities of data management with confidence and leverage the power of tools like Power BI to their full extent. Contact us today to learn more about our Data Analytics and Visualization.

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