“Unable to connect” error when accessing SQL database in Power BI Desktop

When attempting to access a SQL server/database in Power BI, you might get the following error message:

Unable to connect

We encountered an error while trying to connect.

Details: “An error happened while reading data from the provider: ‘Could not load file or assembly ‘System.EnterpriseServices, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=…..

Error message received when trying to get a SQL database as a data source in Power BI


You just need to run Power BI as administrator before attempting to access the SQL database as a data source.

  1. Save your work and close Power BI Desktop
  2. Right click Power BI Desktop and select “Run as administrator”

3. Attempt to access your database again – you shouldn’t have an issue.

4 Replies to ““Unable to connect” error when accessing SQL database in Power BI Desktop”

  1. I knew about this issue and I have always been using PowerBI to run as admin, but I have several users who are NOT admins on the box and this is not feasible solution. So other than this workaround with doesn’t work in my case, are there any other workarounds you are aware of? Thanks

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