Azure

  • Part 3: Natural Language Processing – Sentiment Analysis and Opinion Mining

    If you remember in part 2 we discussed what Key Word Analysis is and how this can be implemented to gain deeper insight from textual data. But we can go one step deeper and extract feelings and opinions from the same data. We can do this through Sentiment Analysis and Opinion mining! In this blog I will talk you through what they are and how we can implement them using Microsoft’s Cognitive Services. What is Sentiment Analysis? We should…

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  • What are SQL Server Index Fragmentation and Index Fill Factor?

    What is index fragmentation and how does it occur? It is important to know that SQL Server data is stored in data pages, with each page holding 8KB of data. There are two types of fragmentation, both are a result of these pages not being used as efficiently as possible. When you UPDATE or INSERT data on a page that is already full, SQL Server creates a new page. The information from the original page will be split 50/50 with half being added to…

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  • Part 2 : Natural Language Processing- Key Word Analysis

    Here we are with part 2 of this blog series on web scraping and natural language processing (NLP). In the first part I discussed what web scraping was, why it’s done and how it can be done. In this part I will give you details on what NLP is at a high level, and then go into detail of an application of NLP called key word analysis (KWA). What is NLP? NLP is a form of artificial intelligence which deals with the interactions between humans…

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  • Query Store Forced Plan Failures

    Query Store is a fantastic feature of both SQL Server and Azure SQL DB. It allows you to monitor how queries execute against the database which is invaluable for troubleshooting performance issues. More than that though, it gives you the option to force an erratic query to use a particular execution plan, this helps avoid queries from running with inefficient plans and provides predictability and stability on the server. Here we can see an…

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  • ADF breaking out of a ForEach activity

    Currently, the ForEach activity in ADF (or Synapse) does not break out when an inner activity fails. There are several ways you can force the ForEach to break out, the most common is to cancel the pipeline run when an inner activity fails and there are already many blogs out there that cover this. My requirement is slightly different and that is what I will show here. Consider a scenario where you have a ForEach activity which has multiple inner…

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  • Upload Power BI Reports using PowerShell

    In this blog post, I will be sharing a PowerShell script that allows multiple Power BI reports to be uploaded at once. In a previous blogpost, I shared a PowerShell script that allowed users to downloaded multiple Power BI reports. Combined you could move several reports from one workspace to another in a few seconds. The script is downloadable at the bottom of the page as a txt file. To use the script there are three steps to take. The first…

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  • How to Trigger a Power BI Dataset Refresh via Azure Synapse Analytics in 3 Simple Steps.

    In this blog post we’ll explore how to trigger a Power BI Dataset via Azure Synapse Analytics in 3 simple steps: Step 1: Create a new security group called “AzureSynapsePowerBIIntegration” in your Azure Active Directory. Next add the name of your Azure Synapse Workspace as a member of your new security group. This will be your service principal. Step 2: Login to powerbi.com and in the top right hand corner locate “Settings” and…

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  • ADF Dataflow CTE workaround

    At the time of writing, it is not possible to write a query using a CTE in the source of a dataflow. However, there are a few options to deal with this limitation: re-write the query using subqueries instead of CTEs use a stored procedure that contains the query and reference the stored proc in the source of the dataflow write the query as a view and reference the view in the source of the dataflow (this is my preferred method and the one I will…

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  • How to parameterise the Execute Pipeline activity in Azure Synapse Analytics.

    Unfortunately, as of April 2022 there is not an option to parameterise or add dynamic content to an “Execute Pipeline” activity to invoke a pipeline run. However, with the use of a Microsoft API there is method which we can use to overcome this. In this blog post we’ll use the “Pipeline – Create Pipeline Run” API documented below: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/rest/api/synapse/data-plane/pipeline/create-pipeline-run…

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  • Combining Queries from Multiple Sources in Power BI using Merge and Append

    It is always good practice to do as much data preparation as close to the sources as you can before importing or connecting them to your Power BI reports, but what if there are circumstances where this isn’t possible? I had an issue recently where a third-party application had been updated and both the new and legacy versions were being used side-by-side. Logging data from both versions was being written to two separate Azure SQL databases.…

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