Power BI Sharing


There are many ways to share the dashboards, reports, and datasets that you create in Power BI. Below I’ll compare all such options (there are twelve!).

First make sure to have an understanding about Power BI security (which I blogged about here), and be aware that no matter which option you choose below, to share your content you need a Power BI Pro license or the content needs to be in a Premium capacity

Collaborate in a workspace: You can publish content from your Power BI desktop into Power BI workspaces, which is a collection of dashboards, reports, workbooks, datasets, and dataflows.  You can then add security groups, distribution lists, Office 365 groups, or individuals to the workspaces and assign users their roles and privileges as either viewer, contributor, member or admin. This allows collaboration between your coworkers on everything within the workspace. You might naturally put content in your My Workspace (a personal workspace that only you have access to) and share it from there (via the options below). But workspaces are better for collaboration than My Workspace, because others can access it and they allow co-ownership of content. You and your entire team can easily make updates or give others access. My Workspace is best used by individuals for one-off or personal content. More info at Create the new workspaces in Power BI.

Distribute insights in an app: You can take selected items in a workspace and bundle it into a neat package called an app and distribute/publish it to your whole organization, or to specific people or groups. Only dashboards, reports, and workbooks are part of the bundle, and you choose which ones you want to publish via the “INCLUDED IN APP” option.  You can send your business users a direct link to the app, or they can search for it in Microsoft AppSource. After they install an app, they can view it in their browser or mobile device (you can publish apps to people outside your organization via template apps described below). More info at Publish an app in Power BI.

Share dashboards and reports: You can share a dashboard or report via an email invitation, and recipients can view it and interact with it (changing filters and slicers), but can’t edit it but can manually refresh the data. They see the same data that you see in the dashboard and reports unless row-level security (RLS) is applied to the underlying dataset. More info at Share Power BI dashboards and reports with coworkers and others.

Subscribe yourself and others: You can subscribe yourself and your colleagues to report pages, dashboards, and paginated reports via the Power BI service. Power BI emails a snapshot of the report page or dashboard with a link to open the report or dashboard. It can be setup on a schedule. More info at Subscribe yourself and others to reports and dashboards in the Power BI service.

Annotate and share from the Power BI mobile apps: In a Power BI mobile app for iOS or Android devices, you can annotate a tile, report, or visual and then share it with anyone via email. You’re sharing a snapshot of the tile, report, or visual, and your recipients see it exactly as it was when you sent the mail. The mail also contains a link to the dashboard or report. More info at Annotate and share a tile, report, or visual in Power BI mobile apps.

Embed a report in Microsoft Teams: You can add separate Power BI tabs for each individual report for your colleagues to view and then comment on in a conversation window within Teams (when you add a Power BI report tab to Teams, Teams automatically creates a tab conversation to accompany the report). More info at Embed report with the Power BI tab for Microsoft Teams.

Print or save as PDF or PowerPoint: You can print an entire dashboard, dashboard tile, report page, or report visual from the Power BI service. You can also save a report as PDF or PowerPoint. If your report has more than one page, you’ll need to print each page separately. More info at Printing from the Power BI service, Export reports from Power BI to PDF, and Export reports from Power BI to PowerPoint.

Embed reports in Sharepoint Online: With Power BI’s new report web part for SharePoint Online, you can easily embed interactive Power BI reports in SharePoint Online pages. Power BI enforces all permissions and data security before users can see content. The person viewing the report needs the appropriate license. More info at Embed with report web part in SharePoint Online.

Embed a report in a secure portal or website: Easily embed reports in internal web portals such as SharePoint 2019 or a website or blog using a link or HTML. Power BI enforces all permissions and data security before users can see content. The person viewing the report needs the appropriate license. More info at Embed a report in a secure portal or website.

Publish from Power BI to the public web: Easily embed interactive Power BI visualizations online, such as in blog posts and websites using HTML, or via a link you can send in emails or via social media. You can also easily edit, update, refresh, or stop sharing your published visuals. Anyone on the Internet can view your reports, and you have no control over who can see what you’ve published.  They don’t need a Power BI license.  More info at Publish to web from Power BI.

Create and deploy template apps: Template apps are designed to be built by Power BI partners and distributed publicly via Power BI Apps marketplace and Microsoft AppSource to any Power BI customer. The customers use their own account and connect to their own data. Template apps are a replacement for organizational content packs. More info at Power BI template apps.

Share a dataset: This option allows your whole organization to benefit from using the same well-designed data models and provide ‘one source of truth’. Dataset creators can control who has access to their data by using the Build permission. Dataset creators can also certify or promote datasets so others know which datasets are high quality and official. When you open the dataset catalog in Power BI Desktop or Power BI Service, it shows datasets that are in your My Workspace and in other workspaces that have shared them. More info at Intro to datasets across workspaces (Preview).

Note that you can also “share” data, using features such as Export data to Excel or using Excel PivotTables and PivotCharts to interact with a Power BI dataset.

More info:

Ways to share your work in Power BI

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