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User roles, Power BI Apps, Publish to web, Usage metrics

Collaboration & Sharing: user roles, apps, publish to web, usage reports.

Power BI Service is great for collaboration and sharing. In this article, you will learn about some features of workspaces, apps, publish-to-web, and usage reports related to sharing and collaboration within Power BI Service.

User Roles

Previously, Power BI service just had two major user roles: the edit and view roles. Roles let you manage who can do what in a workspace, so teams can collaborate. There are four major user roles within the workspace in Power BI Service which are Admin, Member, Contributor, and Viewer roles.

Viewer Role

The is role mainly for viewing purposes. It’s like read-only access to the content. A user with this role can view a report or dashboard in a workspace and can also interact with visuals. With this role, cannot add or remove users. Cannot use Analyze in Excel option on reports or have a connection to the datasets or dataflow. Unless given Build permission. Ideal for stakeholders/end users.


Users with this role can create, edit, delete, copy, and publish content and reports within a workspace i.e. access all workspace objects: reports, dashboard, workbook, dataset, and dataflow. However, they cannot publish, update, or edit an app in a workspace unless given this ability by users with admin or member roles. They cannot add or remove users. They can modify Gateway and schedule data refreshes. The Contributor role is the ideal role for Power BI developers.


The member role allows gives access to users to publish the content of a workspace as an App for the end-users. They have all the privileges of the viewer and contributor role. They can also set access for other member roles and below.


The admin role has full access to the workspace. The admin can also update or delete the workspace in addition to performing all of the Member’s role actions. They can also add or remove additional Admins from the workspace.

Power BI Apps

Power BI Apps is another great feature for sharing content in Power BI service. It can be used to share a subset of your workspace content with specific users. For example, if you have about 10 reports in a certain workspace and not all are ready for consumption, you can create an app to share the completed ones with stakeholders this way, they don’t have access to reports still in the pipeline.

Power BI Apps as a method of sharing content is more efficient than giving the viewer role access to users within a workspace. With this method, you can share content with users without having to worry about making changes to the report datasets or the report itself. You can learn more about Power BI Apps Here.

Publish to Web

Publish to the web is the only free method of sharing Power BI content. This method doesn’t have any security bound to it. As soon as you publish a report to the web, anyone with that link can access the report and the data without the need to sign in. This method of sharing is easy. However, it is not recommended for sensitive data.

To publish a report to the web, you need to follow these simple steps.

  1. Open the PowerBI report you desire to publish.
  2. Click on File > Embed report > Publish to web (public)