Embedded Capacity Admin

Control your Embedded capacity through the Reporting Hub

Embedded Capacity Overview

Microsoft offers both monthly and hourly payment options for the Power BI Embedded capacity license, and allows users to manually “pause” their Embedded capacity when the program isn’t being used. In practice, this requires an administrator to manually switch their PBI Embedded capacity on and off through their Azure portal each time a user wishes to access Power BI content. Alternatively, companies can choose to keep their Power BI Embedded capacity running for extended periods, but this comes at a significant expense.

The Reporting Hub automates this process, ensuring that users are only billed for the time when PBI Embedded capacity is actually being used. Additionally, users are able to manage multiple capacities for their respective tenants—a key feature, as different geographical regions may require different capacities, and a region-appropriate capacity is required for optimal performance of Power BI Embedded.

Please note: Make sure Azure Ad application Service Principal is added as an administrator to the capacity.

The tutorials below will explain how to customize the automation of your Power BI Embedded capacity usage using the Reporting Hub Capacity Manager.

How Capacity Manager Works

Your Power BI Embedded capacity must be active in order to publish and refresh PBI reports, and must be paused in order to avoid paying fees when you’re not using the service. The Reporting Hub performs this task programmatically, turning Power BI Embedded into a true “pay-as-you-go” service that only bills you for the time it’s being used.

There are two ways this is done:

  1. Login activation

    • When a user logs into the Reporting Hub, the Embedded capacity will be activated automatically, then pausing when they either a) log out or b) are inactive for a given period of time (see Setting Your Timeout Time).

  2. Refresh schedule

    • You can select a window of time in which your Embedded capacity will activate automatically, ensuring your PBI reports are updated in the Reporting Hub as they’re refreshed (see Setting Your Refresh Schedule).

Note: At the Enterprise and Commercial tiers, you’re also given the option of managing capacities across multiple tenants. Tenants can share capacities, or be assigned different capacities according to region. (See Managing Multiple Capacities.)

Setting Your Embedded Capacity Schedule

To keep your Power BI content up-to-date within the Reporting Hub, your Embedded capacity will need to be active whenever Power BI content is being refreshed in the Power BI service. This can all be managed through the Reporting Hub to ensure your Embedded capacity and your refresh schedule in the Power BI service are aligned.

We recommend that you schedule your Embedded capacity to turn on five to ten minutes before your Power BI datasets are scheduled to refresh. This ensures that your Embedded capacity is running prior to the Power BI service initiating a refresh. According to Microsoft, a scheduled refresh can before as early as five minutes before the scheduled time — learn more.

If your Power BI datasets are set to refresh multiple times during the day, you should add a schedule for each refresh time.

  1. From the admin settings drop-down, select Power BI Settings. This will take you to the Manage Power BI Settings page.

  2. Select the relevant capacity from the dropdown.

  3. Under the Embedded Capacity Schedule header, select Add Schedule.

  4. Select the Start At time. If, for example, your Power BI reports refresh at 7:00 am, you’d select 6:50 am as a Start Time to ensure your capacity is active prior to your data source refresh. Times are displayed in your local time zone.

  5. Select the Capacity Activity Duration using the sliders to set hours and minutes. The Duration of Refresh will depend on the time necessary to complete the process based on your dataset. Click here for more info from Microsoft on refreshing Power BI reports.

  6. Ensure that the Enabled box is checked.

  7. Select Save.

Setting Your Timeout Time

When a user signs on to a Reporting Hub tenant, your Embedded capacity for that tenant will activate automatically. To keep you from incurring unnecessary cost, the Reporting Hub will automatically deactivate your Embedded capacity when a user has been inactive for a given period of time.

To enable this feature:

  1. From the admin settings drop-down, select Power BI Settings. This will take you to the Manage Power BI Settings page.

  2. From the drop-down menu, select the capacity you wish to edit.

    To assign different capacities to different tenants, see below.

  3. Set your preferred Embedded Time Out (in minutes) for the capacity you’ve selected.

  4. At the top right of the page, select Save Changes.

Good to Know: Setting your Embedded time out time to zero (0) will disable the automated deactivation of your Embedded capacity. Your capacity will not be paused by the Reporting Hub.

Managing Multiple Capacities

Note: Multiple capacities are only supported at the Enterprise- and Commercial-tier subscription levels.

Based on your use-case, you may need to run several Embedded capacities. This may be due to data segregation requirements from your users, or, to ensure optimal performance when operating in multiple geographies as an example.

To manage multiple capacities across multiple tenants:

  1. Select App Settings from the admin settings drop-down menu.

  2. Select the Tenant Admin tab.

  3. Select the ellipsis (...) beside the tenant whose capacity you wish to assign.

  4. Select Edit from the tenant actions menu.

  5. From the Edit pop-up, select a capacity from the Power BI Embedded Capacity drop-down.

    To add an Embedded capacity to your list of options, see Configure Power BI Workspaces.

  6. Select Save.

Capacity Considerations

When your Power BI Embedded capacity is inactive/paused, you will not be able to publish reports, and reports will not refresh in the Power BI service.

The Embedded Time Out feature will not log a user out of their Reporting Hub session. If Embedded Time Out is triggered by a period of inactivity, it will reactivate automatically as soon as the user resumes activity.

Help with capacity planning:

How to set up monitoring for your Power BI Embedded capacity:

How to scale your capacity:

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