Power BI if using Postgresql

Does anyone know if Power BI can be used if we've deployed WHD with Postgresql?  I'm assuming no and that we'd have to redeploy WHD using SQL Server.

Is anyone using Power BI with WHD?  Is there anything you can share about the experience?  Thanks!


  • Hi Mark,

    That really depends what data you are aiming to display with Power Bi, usually you would integrate this with the SolarWinds Orion Suite rather than Web Help Desk as the dashboard feature within WHD already displays the majority of data that you would want to show.

    If you are aiming to replace the existing dashboard with Power Bi, I'm sure it is possible, though it may drain time to get it working appropriately. This being said, you would also have to repeat this process each time you upgrade WHD.

    I would recommend that if you are unhappy with the data being displayed in the preexisting dashboard in WHD, then Power Bi can achieve a lot more. Just don't try to embed it, it's quite a pain...


  • Thanks Fluffy - this is for WHD Reporting only.  A person in our Department doesn't log into the Help Desk and wants to instead, use Power BI to display Reports on a wall display, ala Star Trek....

  • It would appear that PowerBI can be connected to Postgres

    Configuring Power BI Connectivity to PostgreSQL Database - oxcrx34285

    Your team mate would likely be on their own to reverse engineer the tables and such to find what they want to display but if they want to do the leg work it can be done. 

  • Thanks mesverrum - I wish it were that easy, as the team mate in this case, is actually the department head....

  • Then I would hope they appreciate the cost benefit comparison of the time it will take your team to learn how to integrate PowerBI to the tool and learn the DB schema well enough to generate their desired reports versus just using the tool as is.

    I actually know that one of my colleagues, jamesatloop1 has done a custom reporting integration with WHD and almost all the other Solarwinds products, but we're pro services consultants so the boss would have to allocate some budget to make that happen, but the option is there if you are interested.

    -Marc Netterfield

        Loop1 Systems: SolarWinds Training and Professional Services

  • I really appreciate that and I'll certainly bring up the subject.  I've already, on my own, exported the WHD Database (via backup) and pulled that into Postgresql running on my laptop.  Then using PGAdmin created custom Queries (having to learn that syntax) to create Reports that aren't readily available in WHD - like Top 10 Clients with Request Type Past 30 days.  But it's just Data, it's not in a pretty pie chart or bar graph.  At this point, the push is to search for a new Help Desk, which none of working the Help Desk wants, in hopes of "better" reporting and/or easy integration into Power Bi.  I'll continue to try and provide the Data being asked for in a visual representation that is hopefully acceptable.

  • Hi straybullet​,

    Is there any reason why you don't do a Powershell command to get the data from PostgreSQL into an Excel spreadsheet, and then use PowerBI to visualise that data from that spreadsheet that was generated?

    This can be done and would work efficiently if you know the exact data that you are wanting to display. Without knowing what data you want to display will really limit any product you look at.


  • HI Midnight - First, thanks again.  Using Powershell is certainly an option.  I can get exported data now using PGAdmin and the custom queries I've created.  I'm still learning how to use and what can be done with Power BI.  I do see where I can import Excel Spreadsheets so I may give that whirl today and see what kind of visuals I can create from the Data I extract.

    I think the end goal of the CIO is for Power BI to be directly connected to the Postgresql Database so he can view his custom Dashboard populated with custom Pie Charts/Graphs that are updated in real time as the data changes in the Help Desk.

    As it stands now, it's a manual process of exporting a backup of the Database, Restore the Database in PG4Admin with the new backup, run the Query, import into Power BI then send out the Visual.  Sounds tedious but from my standpoint, it's not that difficult or time consuming.  If I could streamline the process, that would be great.  My goal is to be able to provide the data he wants visualized the way he wants so he can view/present as he wants.

  • Hi straybullet​,

    I would recommend getting PowerPivot in place for Excel, this will allow you to create pivot tables and live data connections from specified databases.

    This way your process would be to create a connection to the Excel spreadsheet you want to centralise the data to, then set up PowerPivot and link it to the PostgreSQL database. You can then proceed to create your required tables and link PowerBI to that spreadsheet, leading to live data being fed through at a set interval.

    This will be automatic and will only need to be set up once. Additionally, this should save you time as it's easier than having to do PowerShell commands to pull out the data you require, especially if you set up Excel to calculate everything from the data source rather than the manual scripts you may be using at the moment.


  • Hi Midnight, thanks again!  I'll check out that process today; kind of on hold until we can get the CIO to tell us exactly what visualized data he wants to see....at least that will give me some time to look into this; the best part being that it would be automated!