These posts are about Biml (Business Intelligence Markup Language), BimlScript, BimlExpress, BimlStudio, the BimlHero Certified Expert Program and events by the Biml community or Varigence. Older posts may mention BI Developer Extensions, BIDS Helper, Mist or BimlOnline.
Many Biml solutions start off very simple, with just a single Biml file that generates a few SSIS packages. Most developers quickly see the need for a more complex solution for multiple sources. One way to reuse code and apply the Don’t Repeat Yourself software engineering principle in Biml is to use Tiered Biml Files.
In addition to using Tiered Biml Files, there are four other main ways you can avoid repeating your Biml code:
In this post, we will look at how to use Tiered Biml Files.
Woohoo! The Biml Book: Business Intelligence and Data Warehouse Automation is now available for pre-order from Amazon and Apress! 🥳
This is the first book I’ve co-authored, and I have to admit it’s a very strange feeling to see my name on the cover of a book. Am I allowed to say I’m quite proud? Oh, I’ll say it anyway. I’m proud and very honored to have written this book with such a talented group of people: Andy Leonard (@AndyLeonard), Scott Currie (@scottcurrie), Ben Weissman (@bweissman), Bill Fellows (@billinkc), Martin Andersson (@frysdisken), Peter Avenant (@PeterAvenant), Simon Peck (@biguynz), Reeves Smith (@SQLReeves), Raymond Sondak (@raymondsondak) and Jacob Alley.
Are you tired of right-clicking on your Biml files to Check Biml for Errors or to Generate SSIS Packages? Did you know that you can create your own BimlExpress Keyboard Shortcuts? 🤓
BIDS Helper and BimlExpress do not support creating SSIS project parameters from Biml out of the box. There are workarounds (and I have previously blogged about my solution for creating project parameters from Biml), but why is this not a standard feature in BIDS Helper or BimlExpress? Many people have asked about this, so I sat down with Biml creator Scott Currie (@ScottCurrie) to get the full story.
Why doesn’t BIDS Helper or BimlExpress emit SSIS project parameters from Biml?
Well, technically it could, but it shouldn’t. The user experience would have serious issues, leading to confusion, frequent errors, and the potential for data loss. How can that be?
Say welcome to BimlExpress - the newest, shiniest and completely free Biml toy! 🥳 I first mentioned this at SQLSaturday Vienna 2016 and have been waiting for the official release since then. I’m very happy that I can now send you all over to Varigence’s website to download the Visual Studio Extension!
What is BimlExpress?
BimlExpress is a free Visual Studio add-in for working with Biml in your SSIS projects. You can add and edit Biml files, and generate SSIS packages from Biml. The code editor has syntax coloring, error highlighting, Intellisense and a preview pane.
If you are already using BI Developer Extensions (previously known as BIDS Helper), you will see that BimlExpress is similar. You will find all the same Biml features as in BI Developer Extensions - just with a new and improved code editor. No more squiggly red lines, yay!
Which versions of Visual Studio does BimlExpress work with?
- BimlExpress 2019 was released in May 2019. It works with Visual Studio 2010 - 2019.
- BimlExpress 2018 was released in June 2018. It worked with Visual Studio 2010 - 2017.
- BimlExpress 2017 was released in July 2017. It worked with Visual Studio 2010 - 2015.