Visualize Live Zuora Data in the Power BI Service

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CData Connect



Use CData Connect Cloud to create a virtual SQL Server database for Zuora data and create custom reports in the Power BI Service.

Power BI transforms your company's data into rich visuals for you to collect and organize so you can focus on what matters to you. When paired with CData Connect Cloud, you get instant access to Zuora data for visualizations, dashboards, and more. This article shows how to build and publish a dataset from Zuora data in Power BI and then create reports on Zuora data in the Power BI service.

CData Connect Cloud provides a pure SQL interface for Zuora, allowing you to easily build reports from live Zuora data in Power BI — with no need to replicate the data. As you build visualizations, Power BI generates SQL queries to gather data. Using optimized data processing out of the box, CData Connect Cloud pushes all supported SQL operations (filters, JOINs, etc) directly to Zuora, leveraging server-side processing to quickly return Zuora data.

NOTE: You can also import Zuora data into Power BI through Connect Cloud (instead of using the on-premise gateway). Read how in the related Knowledge Base article.

Create a Virtual SQL Database for Zuora Data

CData Connect Cloud uses a straightforward, point-and-click interface to connect to data sources and generate APIs.

  1. Login to Connect Cloud and click Databases.
  2. Select "Zuora" from Available Data Sources.
  3. Enter the necessary authentication properties to connect to Zuora.

    Zuora uses the OAuth standard to authenticate users. See the online Help documentation for a full OAuth authentication guide.

    Configuring Tenant property

    In order to create a valid connection with the provider you need to choose one of the Tenant values (USProduction by default) which matches your account configuration. The following is a list with the available options:

    • USProduction: Requests sent to https://rest.zuora.com.
    • USAPISandbox: Requests sent to https://rest.apisandbox.zuora.com"
    • USPerformanceTest: Requests sent to https://rest.pt1.zuora.com"
    • EUProduction: Requests sent to https://rest.eu.zuora.com"
    • EUSandbox: Requests sent to https://rest.sandbox.eu.zuora.com"

    Selecting a Zuora Service

    Two Zuora services are available: Data Query and AQuA API. By default ZuoraService is set to AQuADataExport.

    DataQuery

    The Data Query feature enables you to export data from your Zuora tenant by performing asynchronous, read-only SQL queries. We recommend to use this service for quick lightweight SQL queries.

    Limitations
    • The maximum number of input records per table after filters have been applied: 1,000,000
    • The maximum number of output records: 100,000
    • The maximum number of simultaneous queries submitted for execution per tenant: 5
    • The maximum number of queued queries submitted for execution after reaching the limitation of simultaneous queries per tenant: 10
    • The maximum processing time for each query in hours: 1
    • The maximum size of memory allocated to each query in GB: 2
    • The maximum number of indices when using Index Join, in other words, the maximum number of records being returned by the left table based on the unique value used in the WHERE clause when using Index Join: 20,000

    AQuADataExport

    AQuA API export is designed to export all the records for all the objects ( tables ). AQuA query jobs have the following limitations:

    Limitations
    • If a query in an AQuA job is executed longer than 8 hours, this job will be killed automatically.
    • The killed AQuA job can be retried three times before returned as failed.
  4. Click Test Database.
  5. Click Privileges -> Add and add the new user (or an existing user) with the appropriate permissions.

Connecting to Connect Cloud from Power BI

To connect to and visualize live Zuora data in the Power BI service), install the on-premises data gateway, add a data source to the gateway from the Power BI service, and publish a dataset from Power BI Desktop to the service.

Install the On-Premises Data Gateway

The Microsoft on-premises data gateway provides secure data transfer between connected data sources and various cloud-based Microsoft tools and platforms. You can read more about the gateway in the Microsoft documentation.

You can download and install the gateway from the Power BI service:

  1. Log in to PowerBI.com.
  2. Click the Download menu and click Data Gateway.
  3. Follow the instructions for installation, making note of the name of the gateway.

Add Zuora as a Data Source to the Power BI Service

Once you have installed the data gateway, you add Connect Cloud as a data source to the Power BI service:

  1. Log in to PowerBI.com.
  2. Click the Settings menu and click "Manage gateways."
  3. Click "ADD DATA SOURCE" and configure the connection to Connect Cloud:

    • Set Data Source Name CloudHub_Zuora.
    • Choose SQL Server as the Data Source Type.
    • Set Server to the address of your Connect Cloud instance (i.e.: myinstance.cdatacloud.net).
    • Set Database to the name of your virtual Zuora database (i.e.: zuoradb).
    • Set Authentication Method to Basic.
    • Set Username and Password to Connect Cloud credentials.

Publish a Dataset from Power BI Desktop

With the gateway installed and Connect Cloud added as a datasource to the Power BI service, you can publish a dataset from Power BI Desktop to the service.

  1. Open Power BI, click Get Data -> More, then select SQL Server database, and click Connect.
  2. Set the connection properties and click OK.
    • Set Server to the address of your Connect Cloud instance (i.e.: myinstance.cdatacloud.net).
    • Set Database to the name of your virtual Zuora database (i.e.: zuoradb).
    • Set Data Connectivity mode to DirectQuery*.
    * DirectQuery enables live query processing and real-time visualizations of Zuora data.
  3. In the authentication wizard, select Database, set the User name and Password properties, and click Connect.
  4. Select the table(s) to visualize in the Navigator dialog.
  5. In the Query Editor, you can customize your dataset by filtering, sorting, and summarizing Zuora columns. Click Edit to open the query editor. Right-click a row to filter the rows. Right-click a column header to perform actions like the following:

    • Change column data types
    • Remove a column
    • Group by columns

    Power BI detects each column's data type from the Zuora metadata reported by Connect Cloud.

    Power BI records your modifications to the query in the Applied Steps section, adjusting the underlying data retrieval query that is executed to the remote Zuora data. When you click Close and Apply, Power BI executes the data retrieval query.

    Otherwise, click Load to pull the data into Power BI.

  6. Define any relationships between the selected entities on the Relationships tab.
  7. Click Publish (from the Home menu) and select a Workspace.

Build Reports and Dashboards on Zuora Data in the Power BI Service

Now that you have published a dataset to the Power BI service, you can create new reports and dashboards based on the published data:

  1. Log in to PowerBI.com.
  2. Click Workspaces and select a workspace.
  3. Click Create and select Report.
  4. Select the published dataset for the report.
  5. Choose fields and visualizations to add to your report.

SQL Access to Zuora Data from Cloud Applications

Now you have a direct connection to live Zuora data from the Power BI service. You can create more data sources and new visualizations, build reports, and more — all without replicating Zuora data.

To get SQL data access to 200+ SaaS, Big Data, and NoSQL sources directly from your cloud applications, see the CData Connect Cloud.