Reporting on Navision (now Business Central) or Dynamics 365 CRM? OData feed was the way to go! We called web services who we had initialized in our ERP packages. But lately, there are more and more problems with OData. Especially when we want to enter our login details in the Power BI Service.

It is no longer possible to enter your organization login as credentials in the Service when setting up the automatic refresh. Microsoft gives us a boost to take a closer look at the PowerPlatform. There is also a Business Central connector and a CDS connector for Power BI Reporting.

Business Central Connector

The Business Central connector contains all web services that have been added to the Webservices table in Business Central. The connector makes it much easier for the Power BI user. No more messing around with OData URLs, just select the tables that are needed. This can also be done multi-company! If your user has the correct rights to different companies in Business Central, he can address the tables across the different companies.

CDS Connector (Common Data Service)

The CDS connector is not as straightforward as the Business Central connector. To be able to use the CDS connector with the server URL in your possession. The server URL is the address where you surf to open your Dynamics 365 CRM. This usually looks like this: https://tenantname.crm4.dynamics.com. When you enter this and click on the “OK” button you will see all the entities in your CRM.

These are the entities for which your account in CRM has rights. Then the same way as the Business Central connector, select what you need.

Optional fields

tenantname = name of the tenant
crm4 = your region code for the tenant

Conclusion

So we can conclude that using certain connectors becomes more important than using the OData feed. There are two reasons for this:

  1. It is easier to retrieve the data from the sources. In order to collect the necessary data, less knowledge of “code” is needed.
  2. Logging in is much easier because there are no more choices to be made. Your office-account becomes very important for the connector.

An important point the data technicians have to take into account is the rights they have in the application itself, here Business Central and Dynamics 365 CRM. I hope you enjoyed reading this article and good luck building reports on BC and Dynamics 365 CRM!