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Power BI Report Sharing

  • 1.  Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 14, 2019 12:33 PM
    Hi,
    I and several other Pro users in our organization were able publish reports and share them online with staff that have only Power BI free access. Recently, our IT staff made some changes to restrict multiple groups but they rolled it back. The reports that were earlier accessible to the staff are no longer accessible, they have been getting a pop up message to upgrade to Pro license.
    Has any one experienced this problem.
    Thanks,
    Vidya

    ------------------------------
    vidya Gadang
    Senior Data Analyst
    4793874599
    ------------------------------


  • 2.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Gold Contributor
    Posted May 14, 2019 04:16 PM
    In my experience they should never haven been able to see those reports, unless you published them to a premium capacity workspace.

    ------------------------------
    Ben Howard
    ------------------------------



  • 3.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Top Contributor
    Posted May 15, 2019 12:21 AM
    As already suggested by Ben, there is a bug in MS which lets you do that without having a premium capacity.

    As soon as MS fixes that free users won't be able to see Reports / Dashboard unless they are published in Premium Capacity.

    Regards,

    ------------------------------
    Hasham Bin Niaz
    Sr. BI Consultant
    Karachi, Pakistan
    ------------------------------



  • 4.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 15, 2019 10:14 AM
    Thank you for the response. This is very helpful.
    Vidya

    ------------------------------
    vidya Gadang
    Senior Data Analyst
    4793874599
    ------------------------------



  • 5.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 15, 2019 10:18 AM
    Thank you Kristi,
    They never had PRO free trail, but like the other folks in this thread said it might be due to a glitch, we should have never been able to share with free Power BI users.
    Thanks,
    Vidya

    ------------------------------
    vidya Gadang
    Senior Data Analyst
    4793874599
    ------------------------------



  • 6.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 15, 2019 07:58 AM
    Could it be that your free users were using the free pro trial and it just happened to expire at the same time your IT team made some adjustments?

    ------------------------------
    Kristi Cantor
    KaTom Restaurant Supply
    Kodak TN
    4235865758
    ------------------------------



  • 7.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Bronze Contributor
    Posted May 15, 2019 04:04 PM

    As a developer with a Pro license I was making use of the same "glitch" to share reports with report "consumers" until the security fix showed up late last week.

    To make a long story short, there is no way to let users see reports (securely) without either:

    1. Having premium capacity (which is super expensive for small to medium size businesses to shell out almost $5k a month)
    2. Give each user a Pro license that needs access to the report (this is what we budgeted/planned for...so 4+ months free ain't bad)
    3. Have an on site Enterprise SQL license that you can run power BI as an "on premise" service (sans some AI bells and whistles)
    4. Distribute .pbix files and use the free client locally (a nightmare to organize)

    Microsoft has done a "spotty" job of clarifying use case scenarios on how to share, focusing on developer collaboration and access levels that don't take into account that there are report consumers that only need "once in a while" analysis tools. Understanding these has been frustrating for me to learn...mostly by trial and error. Here's a rundown of the different sharing scenarios based on my experience:

    • Basic Sharing (e.g. using that "Share" button in the Power BI service)
      • Requires everyone to have a Pro license
      • No automatic restrictions on editing (because of the pro license) so end users get a lot of "new buttons to try" that can lead to trouble
      • Microsoft documentation says that the access levels are "Read", but I think that may be in reference to the underlying dataset. Editing (aka breaking) reports is only a couple of clicks away
    • Work Space Access Sharing
      • Same requirements and troubles as Basic Sharing, but useful to package up multiple Dashboards, Reports, Datasets, and DataFlows under a single access schema
    • Power BI App
      • This is Microsoft's recommended "Best Practice" for report distribution
      • Essentially wrapping up a Work Space into a package for distribution
      • It also has the added benefit of managing "Publish" versions separate from the workflow, essentially making it a Developer area in the Work Space, and an "end user" experience in the "App"
      • Still requires Pro license just to use the "Read" access
      • End users unfamiliar with Office Online "apps" frequently don't understand how this "app" is made by us, but Outlook Online is made by Microsoft.  Using the old (deprecated) term "content packs" seems to get better understanding.
    • Publish to the web
      • Completely unsecured - just don't use this
    • SharePoint Online
      • A nice presentation style, but non-Pro users will get a prompt that says "This content isn't available. Learn more about Power BI"
      • See my preferred alternative below in "Secure Embedded"
    • Power BI Embedded
      • Only useful in specific cases where app development is involved
      • Technically can be used to give to non-Pro users within the domain IF Premium capacity is purchased
    • Secure Embedded
      • Technically can be used to give to non-Pro users within the domain IF Premium capacity is purchased
      • Handy to use when displaying in SharePoint Online or web pages because it has height/width settings within the tags
      • When using in SharePoint Online pages, a different prompt is presented that says "To view this report, ask the author for access" with a "Request access" button.  That can open up a useful dialogue of "I'd be happy to grant you access, but using reports for ad-hoc reporting does cost IT a monthly fee. Is this going to get used often enough to justify the expense?"

    That last bit about opening the dialogue is how I choose to engage the organization. I use a lot of easily found SharePoint pages with Secure Embedded reports. Knowing it exists gave report consumers a sense of what was available, but that "Request Access" button pre-established the concept that there were some hurdles to get it.

    In short, sharing isn't free (despite a lot of ways to share), but how you choose to share can come with benefits in managing content and communicating effectively with your report consumers.

    Hope that helps...good luck!



    ------------------------------
    Nathan Nelson
    Business Intelligence Developer
    United States
    ------------------------------



  • 8.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Top Contributor
    Posted May 15, 2019 11:01 PM
    Hi Nathan,

    You summed it up quite well, just a case how small / mid size organization can utilize the sharing strategy.

    They will need to buy 1-50 Power BI Pro license, depending on the usage.

    Utilize Administrative settings to restrict only [dev group] to create App Wrokspace

    Share the content within organization using [App] with read only access, also you can push the [App] to end users as well.

    Regards,

    ------------------------------
    Hasham Bin Niaz
    Director Data & Analytics
    Karachi, Pakistan
    ------------------------------



  • 9.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Bronze Contributor
    Posted May 16, 2019 11:31 AM
    What are our options to share BI reports with users who doesn't have pro licenses?
    Please advise.

    ------------------------------
    Geethika
    ------------------------------



  • 10.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Bronze Contributor
    Posted May 17, 2019 10:10 AM
    Hi Geethika,

    My understanding (maybe someone else knows better) is that the options are pretty slim to distribute to users who don't have pro licenses. From all the resources I've read - the options are all either very expensive:
    • Premium Capacity Service (starting at about $5k/month) - although I don't have this at my organization, I believe this also allows you to distribute outside of your domain
    • Enterprise SQL on premise (around $14k based on my last check)
    ...or very time consuming to organize:
    • Share pbix files


    ------------------------------
    Nathan Nelson
    Business Intelligence Developer
    United States
    ------------------------------



  • 11.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Bronze Contributor
    Posted May 20, 2019 11:35 AM
    I was able to publish Power BI dashboards in Dynamics CRM following the article - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/power-bi/service-dashboard-create.

    Does the end users need to have Power BI pro license to be able to access these? Please advise

    ------------------------------
    Regards,
    Geethika
    ------------------------------



  • 12.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Bronze Contributor
    Posted May 17, 2019 10:27 AM
    Hi Hasham,

    I hadn't thought about restricting workspace creation in the tenant settings. That's a good idea! Thank you!

    One area that I'm still confused a little about is the App distribution. In the Access Permissions when publishing an app, there is a little information icon that says "Users and groups with access to this workspace can access this app."  So, I've been granting "Contributor" permissions to users that I plan to distribute the app to, with co-developers at the "Member" permissions. Here's where the problem lies: If I am using the app to try and distribute reports to report consumers...what stops them from logging into the service, accessing the workspace, downloading a copy of the .pbix, changing it, and "contributing" an alternate report?  It seems like a scenario that there should be a way to stop...but I can't figure it out.  I'm kind of hoping for a "Reader" role.  Any ideas?

    ------------------------------
    Nathan Nelson
    Business Intelligence Developer
    United States
    ------------------------------



  • 13.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 20, 2019 04:42 AM
    Edited by Martin Collins May 20, 2019 09:41 AM
    Hi Nathan, I saw this post and thought it might answer your questions by explaining how we manage report sharing in our organisation:

    1. Report is authored in Power Bi desktop and published to an App Workspace on the service
    2. Within this Workspace we will add the report requester/s as "contributors" to allow them to test and validate the report
    3. Once approved we publish the app to the entire organisation (or depending on data sensitivity to a set list of individuals)
    4. App link is then either shared with the business or relevant users are directed to "Get apps"
    5. Finally we will remove the users that were added as contributors to maintain control and security of the App Workspace - these contributors will be able to see the report from the published app 
    There may be a more elegant way of doing this but it seems to work for us at the moment. I should point out it is a relatively small company of around 200 employees.

    I think to answer your question on "reader" role this comes when you publish the App; end users do not need to be an admin/member/contributor of the Workspace to see a published App.

    Any questions or suggestions please let me know.

    ------------------------------
    Martin Collins
    Business Intelligence Report Writer

    ------------------------------



  • 14.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 20, 2019 09:16 AM
    Hi Martin
    Thanks for sharing
    Could you expand on these 2 points.
    "3. Once approved we publish the app to the entire organisation (or depending on data sensitivity to a set list of individuals)"
    what is the process you do to "Publish"?

    "4. App link is then either shared with the business or relevant users are directed to "Get apps"  "
    ​How are you sharing the link?

    Also, how are users directed to "Get Apps"?

    Thank you again.
    Best Regards,

    ------------------------------
    Michael Sedlock
    VP of I.T.
    Dukal Corporation
    Ronkonkoma NY
    ------------------------------



  • 15.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 20, 2019 09:40 AM
    Edited by Martin Collins May 20, 2019 09:41 AM
    Hi Michael,

    Apologies for the confusion, I have tried to clarify the points below:

    3. "Publish" to the organisation -
    • I review the App Workspace and select the report and dashboards I want to be made available within that App (and have been validated)
    • I then select "Publish" to push out this App to the end business users (at this stage you decide the App details, content and access)
    The below article from Microsoft explains the process in depth:
    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/power-bi/service-create-distribute-apps 

    4. As we have a small organisation we would often share the App link via either Email or using Microsoft Teams. We have also run some internal training courses highlighting how to access Apps from the "Get Apps" page and therefore we can often send communication (Email/ Microsoft Teams) informing the business an App is now available to access.

    I should have also pointed out in my previous post that we do not use premium capacity for report sharing but instead we assign Power Bi Pro licences to any user that needs to consume a report.

    I hope this answers your question but if not please let me know.

    Thanks,

    ------------------------------
    Martin Collins
    Business Intelligence Report Writer
    ------------------------------



  • 16.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 17, 2019 08:49 AM
    Hi Nathan
    Thank you for breaking down all those options. Can you expand on your final implementation? From what you wrote, I think you are using PowerBi Pro licenses & SharePoint with Secure Embedded. Is this correct?

    Thank you in advance,

    ------------------------------
    Michael Sedlock
    Dukal Corp
    Dukal Corporation
    Ronkonkoma NY
    631-656-3800
    ------------------------------



  • 17.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Bronze Contributor
    Posted May 17, 2019 10:00 AM
    Hi Michael,

    That's correct. I have been focusing on using the secure embedded code within SharePoint to encourage users to request pro licenses in their budget as needs increase.
    Just to be clear, because Microsoft has so many different sharing options, that is the scenario we use for report "consumers". It certainly doesn't limit us from using other methods (with the exception of Premium backed service sharing, mostly because of cost). We still use workspaces to share content between developers/analysts who know how to edit the datasets and create value added relationships.
    Although less common, there are a couple scenarios in our organization where apps have been the most logical deployment to segregate "ready for use" reports and dashboards from those that we are working on outstanding requests.

    However, purchasing a pro license is still an entry point to being a regular report user.

    ------------------------------
    Nathan Nelson
    Business Intelligence Developer
    United States
    ------------------------------



  • 18.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 17, 2019 08:55 AM
    Thank you Nathan, This is super helpful.
    Vidya

    ------------------------------
    vidya Gadang
    Senior Data Analyst
    ------------------------------



  • 19.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 23, 2019 12:44 PM
    Hello all,

    I am a new user to Power BI, and apologize for posting what is likely a very basic question. I am trying to understand the sharing of Power BI reports as discussed in this thread, as I'm interested in the report sharing features of Power BI. I have made a report with Power BI Desktop, and was curious if there is a way to make this report publicly available either on our campus website or through our SharePoint portal.

    Is it possible to share a Power BI report on a publicly available space, or would any user who wants to view the report need Power BI or Power BI Pro? I do have Power BI Pro, and I think I can share the report with other Power BI Pro users, but I was hoping that I could make a report that would allow anyone inside and outside of my organization to view and interact with the report. If this is not part of the functionality of Power BI, I'd like to know ahead of time before investing time trying to make it work!

    I've looked through the "Tutorial: Embed Power BI content into an application for your organization" article (https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/power-bi/developer/embed-sample-for-your-organization), but this looked like this sharing was still happening in Power BI.

    Thanks in advance for your time,

    Monte Schaff
    Institutional Research Analyst

    ------------------------------
    Monte Schaff
    Institutional Research Analyst
    Bismarck ND
    7012553285
    ------------------------------



  • 20.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Gold Contributor
    Posted May 24, 2019 08:11 AM
    Hi Monte,
    It is possible to share reports publicly and this does not require any licence to view - all you need to do is publish your report from the desktop to your workspace, and from there select the File | Publish to Web button.   Here's an example report which you can access - https://app.powerbi.com/view?r=eyJrIjoiNDQxZmQ0MGEtMjVmZC00MjM5LWI3ZWUtMzQ4MzJhMjMzMWM2IiwidCI6ImI0MWI2YWQ5LTViZDAtNGNkYS05NWI3LWI0NDhkMGM2NTZiYyJ9

    ------------------------------
    Ben Howard
    ------------------------------



  • 21.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Top Contributor
    Posted May 27, 2019 03:50 AM
    Hi @Monte Schaff,

    I have not read the entire thread so please excuse me if I have missed something or repeating it.

    If you are trying to share a PBI report outside your organization, you can even try the 'Secure Embedded' option.
    This will work like the 'Publish to Web' but it will be password protected, so you have a little more control over it than the 'Publish to Web'.

    I hope this helps you and that I am not repeating what anyone has already said before.

    Thank you,

    ------------------------------
    Vishesh Jain
    Owner
    VR Construction
    ------------------------------



  • 22.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 28, 2019 03:58 PM

    Thank you for your response, Vishesh. I did try the embed code option, and when I tried to view my report on my organization's web site, I was required to log in with my Power BI credentials. I was hoping I could have the report displayed without needing any type of authentication.

    Thanks again for your assistance,

    Monte



    ------------------------------
    Monte Schaff
    Institutional Research Analyst
    Bismarck ND
    7012553285
    ------------------------------



  • 23.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Top Contributor
    Posted May 29, 2019 03:59 AM
    Edited by Vishesh Jain May 29, 2019 04:00 AM
    Hi @Monte Schaff,

    In that case you will have to go to the 'Publish to web' option.

    I was reading your other posts and you were skeptical about it being open to everyone.
    I completely agree to this and I was in 2 minds as well, when I was doing this for my organization.
    Then I realized, that the report is exposed only if someone has the correct URL. If you can safeguard that URL then it should not really be an issue.
    Moreover what you can do is that, every now and then you delete the URL and create a new one.
    This way even if someone gets hold of your URL, as soon as you create a new URL the old one stops working.

    Again, I agree that Publish to Web is not the safest option but there is a workaround.
    If not, then you can look into the Embedded option, but that will require you to purchase a MS capacity, starting with the A1.

    Hope this helps.

    Thank you,

    ------------------------------
    Vishesh Jain
    Owner
    VR Construction
    ------------------------------



  • 24.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 29, 2019 10:50 AM
    Thank you, Vishesh. I did try the publish to the web option, and was able to get my report to view publicly! My main concern was not completely understanding the dialogue box that came up, as I wasn't clear on whether the publish to web would actually place my report on another web site, or if it would simply generate the code. The reports I'll be sharing will not contain any confidential information and are designed for public access, and I'm thrilled I was able to make this work.

    I really appreciate your guidance and feedback on my question,

    Monte

    ------------------------------
    Monte Schaff
    Institutional Research Analyst
    Bismarck ND
    7012553285
    ------------------------------



  • 25.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 28, 2019 03:56 PM

    Thank you so much, Ben. I attempted the File | Publish and used the Embed option, but the report required a log-in to Power BI to view the report. I was hoping that I could have the report set up like the one you have linked in your message. When I choose embed in a public website, I receive a message that anyone on the Internet can see the data, which is fine, however, I also see that the report may be used by Microsoft on a public website or public gallery.

    I did not proceed past this step, as I was not sure if, when I choose publish to a public website, whether or not I would simply be provided the embed code, or if my report was going to be published on a public page outside of my organization. I guess I'm just confused at what this message is actually telling me, and what happens once I click "publish".

    Thanks again for you time in responding to my questions, I very much appreciate the sharing of expertise!

    Monte



    ------------------------------
    Monte Schaff
    Institutional Research Analyst
    Bismarck ND
    7012553285
    ------------------------------



  • 26.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Gold Contributor
    Posted May 28, 2019 06:04 PM
      |   view attached
    Hi Monte,
    You are both given an embed code, and the URL for the specific site.



    If you delete the report from the workspace, then the public facing report is also deleted, so you can test this easily.

    ------------------------------
    Ben Howard
    ------------------------------



  • 27.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 29, 2019 10:13 AM
    Thank you, again, Ben. I'll give this a shot. Very much appreciate your help!

    Monte

    ------------------------------
    Monte Schaff
    Institutional Research Analyst
    Bismarck ND
    7012553285
    ------------------------------



  • 28.  RE: Power BI Report Sharing

    Posted May 29, 2019 10:43 AM
    It works! THANK YOU!!!

    ------------------------------
    Monte Schaff
    Institutional Research Analyst
    Bismarck ND
    7012553285
    ------------------------------