R with PowerBI – A step by step guide approach

A lot of interests are visible everywhere how to integrate R scripts with Microsoft PowerBI dashboards. Here goes a step by step guidance on this.

Lets assume, you have some couple of readymade R code available, for example , with ggplot2 library. Lets find the following scripts performing analytics using CHOL data.

  1. Open R studio or R Package (CRAN) & install ggplot2 library first.

  2. Paste the following R script & execute it.

chol <- read.table(url(“http://assets.datacamp.com/blog_assets/chol.txt&#8221;), header = TRUE)
#Take the column “AGE” from the “chol” dataset and make a histogram it
qplot(chol$AGE , geom = “histogram”)
ggplot(data-chol, aes(chol$AGE)) + geom_histogram()

you should be able to see the visuals output like this.


3. Next, execute the following pieces of R code to find out the binwidth argument using ‘qplot()‘ function.

geom = “histogram”,
binwidth = 0.5)


4. Lets take help of hist() function in R.

#Lets take help from hist() function
binwidth = 0.5,
main = “Histogram for Age”,
xlab = “Age”,


5. Now, add I() function where nested  color.

#Add col argument, I() function where nested color.
binwidth = 0.5,
main = “Histogram for Age”,
xlab = “Age”,

I func.JPG

6. Next, adjust ggplot2 little by the following code.

#Adjusting ggplot
ggplot(data=chol, aes(chol$AGE)) +
geom_histogram(breaks=seq(20, 50, by = 2),
alpha = .2) +
labs(title=”Histogram for Age”) +
labs(x=”Age”, y=”Count”) +
xlim(c(18,52)) +


7. Plot a bar graph with this following code.

#Plotting Bar Graph
binwidth = 0.5,
main = “Bar Graph for Mort”,
xlab = “Mort”,


8. Next, open PowerBI desktop tool. You can download it free from this link. Now, click on Get Data tab to start exploring & connect with R dataset. Rscript.JPG

If you already have R installed in the same system building PowerBI visuals , you just need to paste the R scripts next in the code pen otherwise , you need to install R in the system where you are using the PowerBI desktop like this.


9. Next, you can also choose the ‘custom R visual’ in PowerBI desktop visualizations & provide the required R scripts to build visuals & finally click ‘Run’.



10. Build all the R function visuals by following the same steps & finally save the dashboard.


11.You can refresh an R script in Power BI Desktop. When you refresh an R script, Power BI Desktop runs the R script again in the Power BI Desktop environment.





About Anindita
Anindita Basak is working as Big Data Cloud Consultant in Microsoft. Worked in multiple MNCs as Developer & Senior Developer on Microsoft Azure, Data Platform, IoT & BI , Data Visualization, Data warehousing & ETL & of course in Hadoop platform.She played both as FTE & v- employee in Azure platform teams of Microsoft.Passionate about .NET , Java, Python & Data Science. She is also an active Big Data & Cloud Trainer & would love share her experience in IT Training Industry. She is an author, forum contributor, blogger & technical reviewer of various books on Big Data Hadoop, HDInsight, IoT & Data Science, SQL Server PDW & PowerBI.

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