10 Best Free & Open Source BI Tools

Nilam Oswal

Nilam Oswal

Senior editor

Parul Saxena

Chief editor

Last updated: May 16, 2021

Business Intelligence (BI) tools are specialized in extracting insights through analysis of data, statistics, and analytics. It provides the means for efficient reporting, which ultimately allows companies to make smarter business decisions.

Looking for Business Intelligence Software? Check out SoftwareSuggest’s list of the best business intelligence software solutions.

The best thing about BI tools is that the size of the organizations does not bind them. Regardless of size, most business tools are expensive. That’s why many organizations tend to avoid using BI tools because of the cost. 

But it doesn’t have to be the case anymore. In this article, we have listed out the top 10 free and open source BI tools that you can consider using. 

Best Free and Open Source BI Tools

1. BIRT

birt

BIRT is an open source BI tool that provides a platform to create data visualizations and reports for web applications, especially those based on Java and Java EE. It has two main components — a runtime component that can be deployed on your app server and a visual report designer for creating BIRT Designs. 

BIRT BI platform includes BIRT Designer, BIRT Designer Pro, BIRT Analytics, and BIRT iHub F-Type.

Features

  • Seamlessly integrates with any data source in any environment
  • Builds reports on XML data source

Pros

  • Powerful tools to create charts
  • Has an active, growing developer community

Cons

  • The user interface seems to be too cluttered

2. Seal Report

seal_report

Seal Report is one of the best free BI tools for the Microsoft .Net Framework, entirely written in C#. This open source BI tool is quite easy to set up. Once installed, users can easily build reports and publish them quickly. 

 

It features pivot tables, web report server, HTML 5 charts, drill-downs, task scheduler, report tasks, and more.

Features

  • Displays your KPIs or published Widgets in a single view
  • Enables you to publish and edit your reports on the web

Pros

  • Good for simple reporting
  • Has a responsive dashboard

Cons

  • Lacks advanced collaboration and reporting features

3. Widestage

widestage

Widestage is a free, open source BI tool that is lightweight and powered by NodeJS. It provides drag-and-drop functionality that enables users to create their own reports fast and easy. Not only that, but the use of the semantic layer makes it more accessible. 

It acts as a self-service business intelligence tool. 

Features

  • Has an intuitive and modern front-end, robust back-end
  • Supports joints between collections

Pros

  • Detects nested elements
  • Quite easy to install and set up

Cons

  • Not smooth with integration

4. Tableau Public

tableau

Tableau Public is a free BI tool that enables you to create infographics and lively charts, stunning maps, live dashboards, and more. You can easily publish your report anywhere on the web. 

 

The tool is visually stunning, and it also highlights your analysis effectively. 

Features

  • Enables you to create mobile-friendly dashboards in seconds
  • Provides you a mapping experience with vector-based maps

Pros

  • Quite easy-to-use and has an intuitive interface
  • Visualization can be embedded

Cons

  • Implementation is quite complex

5. Visualize Free

inetsoft

Visualize Free is another best free BI tool that specializes in performing data mining. It offers various analysis tools that can help you discover meaningful trends and patterns hidden in your data. 

 

Furthermore, this free business intelligence tool is very intuitive and interactive. 

Features

  • Lets you create exploratory and analytical dashboards
  • Offers drag-and-drop functionalities to let you build your reports with ease

Pros

  • Provides actionable business intelligence insights
  • Hosted on cloud

Cons

  • N/A

6. Apache Superset

superset

Apache Superset is one of the leading open source BI tools that perfectly fits into the category of modern and enterprise-ready business tool. It allows easy data exploration through its rich visualization. 

 

The tool uses a lightweight semantic layer that allows you to control how the data is exposed to other users. 

Features

  • Has an easy-to-use, intuitive, and interactive interface
  • Offers a rich set of data visualizations

Pros

  • Reliable and active support team
  • Doesn’t require any additional desktop installation

Cons

  • Requires some coding skills

7. Metabase

metabase

Metabase is a leading open source BI tool that empowers users to learn from data by asking questions. Users can filter and group their data to find what they are looking for. 

 

Furthermore, it provides an elegant SQL interface. The software also gives you a real-time glimpse into the data activity of your company. 

Features

  • Has a rich, intuitive dashboard with full screen and auto-refresh option
  • Enables you to create canonical segments and metrics

Pros

  • Constantly improving and fixing bugs
  • Creates a rich visualization

Cons

  • Users found it quite slow with performance

8. Databox Free Edition

databox

Databox is a cloud-based, free BI tool that has an intuitive interface to offer. It uses simple gestures to see and interact with the data. 

 

 

In short, it offers a business analytics platform for marketers, analysts, and decision-makers to view various key performance and generate reports. 

Features

  • Keeps your data secure by restricting it to admin-based control
  • Lets you import data from your own database

Pros

  • Enhanced security
  • Delivers scorecards directly to the mobile

Cons

  • Guide on how to use is missing

9. SQL Power Wabit

sql_power

One of the best open source BI tools, SQL Power Wabit offers a platform whereby business users can efficiently perform all their reporting and analytics functions. It has an intuitive interface, which enables you to create rich visualizations. 

 

Some of its functionalities include drop-and-drag playpen, global searching, and more. 

Features

  • Lets you create real-time reports and dashboards
  • Enables you to modify, format, and customize standard reports

Pros

  • Very easy-to-use
  • Auto creates SQL queries

Cons

  • N/A

10. Google Data Studio

data_studio

Google Data Studio is another free BI tools that transform your raw data into insightful metrics to help you make smart business decisions. You can quickly cleanse, combine, and process all your data without the need for any manual coding. 

 

Users can easily view, edit, and manage versions of reports from anywhere using the software. 

Features

  • Enables seamless integration between data, analysis, and reporting 
  • Allows customization of designs as per your needs and preferences

Pros

  • Reusable templates for fast reports
  • Quite easy to use

Cons

  • Implementation is complex

Final Words

It’s no secret that those businesses that handle data efficiently are more successful. 

These BI tools enable you to simplify the complex data into visuals such as charts and infographics so that you can easily analyze the performance level of your organization. Get started already! 

Nilam Oswal
Nilam Oswal is a Content Marketing Head and Brand Strategiest at SoftwareSuggest. When she's not hard at work, she can be found wandering, reading, and just generally having a good time in life.

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