Install and Configure Power BI Report Server Step by Step

Install and Configure Power BI Report Server Step by Step

In this article,we’ll will explain How to Install and Configure Power BI Report Server Step By Step.

Install and Configure Power BI Report Server

To Install and Configure Power BI Report Server (Power BI On-Premise), we’ll go through the following:


What’s Power BI Report Server (Power BI On-Premise)?

The Power BI Report Server is a reporting solution that will help you to build and publish the Power BI reports to an On-Premises Report Server.

Power BI Report Server Software Requirements

  • The Power BI Report Server installation is only supported on 64x.
  • The supported SQL Server Versions (SQL Server 2012 to SQL Server 2019).
  • The Power Power BI Report Server requires .Net framework 4.7 to be installed.
  • The Power Power BI Report Server is supported on
    • Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2016, and Windows Server 2019.
    • Windows 8, Windows 10.

For more details check Hardware and software requirements for installing Power BI Report Server


Power BI Report Server Licensing

Unlike the SSRS (SQL Server Reporting Service), the Power BI Report Server license is not bundled with the SQL Server License.

The Power BI Report Server license has an independent license that is included in

  1. Power BI Premium.
  2. SQL Server Enterprise Edition with Software assurance.

In the second option, The use of Power BI Report Server does not require a separate SQL Server license unless you intend to use other components such as the SQL Server database engine or SQL Server Integration Services.

A limited-use rights database engine comes with Power BI Report Server for hosting the Report Server catalog and temporary databases.

At least one Power BI Pro user license is required for publishing content to Power BI Report Server.


Where’s the Power BI Report Server Key?

You can get the Power BI Report Server Key,  from the following:

Volume Licensing Service Center

  • Login to the Volume Licensing Service Center.
  • Looking for the latest SQL Server Enterprise Edition.
  • In the “download” section, check “Running Power BI Report Server“.

Power BI Admin Portal

  • Log in to the Power BI Admin Portal using Global Admin.
  • At “Power BI Premium” Tab > Click on “Power BI Report Server Key
Power BI Admin Portal

If  you aren’t subscribed to Power BI Premium, you can use

  • Power BI Report Server trial edition for 180 days,
  • Power BI Report Server Developer Edition.

Install and configure Power BI Report Server Prerequisites

Before we getting started to Install and configure Power BI Report Server, you prepare the below prerequisites:

  • Make sure that the SQL Server has been installed and configured on the database server before installing the Power BI Report Server.

It’s strongly recommended to install the Power BI report server in a separate server, not in the same database server.

  • Make sure that the DB server is reachable from the Power BI Report Server.

Please, check How to Check SQL Server Instance Connectivity from the application server to the database server.

  • Install and Configure the Web Server (IIS) role on the Power BI Report Server.
  • Download the Power BI Report Server.
  • Download SQL Server 2017 Management Studio.
  • The license key for Power BI Report Server, check where you can find the Power BI Report Server key.
  • Make sure that the installation account is a member of the Local Administrator Group.
  • Make sure that the user used to configure the Power BI Report Server have access, run script, and create database permission on the Database Server.

How to Install and Configure Power BI Report Server Step By Step?

Steps

  1. Download the latest Power BI Report Server version. (About 241 MB).
  2. Install the downloaded “PowerBIReportServer.exe” file.
  3. Follow the Power BI Report Server installation wizard steps.
  4. Configure Power BI Report Server.
    1. Configure the Power BI Report Server Service Account.
    2. Configure the Power BI Report Server Web Service.
    3. Configure the Power BI Report Server Database.
    4. Configure the Power BI Report Server Web Portal.
    5. Backup the Power BI Report Server Encryption keys.
  5. Manage Power BI Report Server Web Portal Permission.
  6. Download the Power BI Desktop.
  7. Install the Power BI Desktop.
  8. Publish the Power BI report to Power BI Report Server.
  9. Browse the Power BI report.

Install Power BI Report Server Step by Step

  • In Welcome Page, Click on “Install Power BI Report Server“.
Install and Configure Power BI Report Server
  • Choose one of the free Power BI Report Server Editions. or provide the Power BI Report Server key.
Report Power BI Report Server Editions
  • Check “I accept the license terms“, then press Next.
Power BI Report Server License
  • By default, the “Install Power BI Report Server Only” option is selected, but after the installation, you will need to have a database instance to configure the Power BI Report Server Database.
Install Power BI Report Server Only
  • Specify the installation location of the Power BI Report Server.
Report Power BI Report Server - Installation Location
  • The Power BI Report Server should be now ready to start the installation process.
Install and Configure Power BI Report Server latest version

Configure Power BI Report Server Step by Step

Once the Power BI Report Server installation is complete, you will be ready to configure the Power BI Report Server by clicking on “Configure Report Server” button.

Configure Power BI Report Server

When you click on the “Configure Report Server” button, you will be asked to connect to the Report Server.

Connect to Power BI Report Server

In this section, we’ll configure the Power BI Report Server by configuring the following:

  • Configure the Power BI Report Server Service Account.
  • Configure the Power BI Report Server Database.
  • Configure the Power BI Report Server Web Portal URL.
  • Configure the Power BI Report Server Encryption keys.

Configure the Power BI Report Server Service Account

In this step, you should provide the service account that will be used to run the Report Server service.

In service account, It’s recommended to use

  • “Network Service” as a built-in account or
  • A domain account.
Configure Power BI Report Server - Service Account
  • Then click “Apply” to configure Power BI Report Server Service Account.

Configure the Power BI Report Server Web Service URL

  • Provide the virtual directory name and the port as you prefer. or leave the default values.
Configure Power BI Report Server - Web Service URL
  • Click “Apply” to configure the Power BI Report Server Web Service URL.
Configure Power BI Report Server - Web Service URL Result

Configure the Power BI Report Server Database

Before configuring the Power BI Report Server Database, you must make sure that you have a ready SQL Server instance with Database Engine installed.

  • If the SQL Server instance is ready, click on “Change Database” button.
Configure Power BI Report Server - Database
  • Follow the Database Creation wizard, Check “Create a new report server database” then click “Next”.
Configure Power BI Report Server - create a new Power BI Report Server Database
  • Connect to the database server, by providing:
    • The SQL Server Instance that will host the Power BI database.
    • The Authentication type as you prefer.
Configure Power BI Report Server - Connect Power BI Report Server Database Engine
  • Provide an existing account that the Power BI service will use to connect to the Power BI Report Server database.
Configure Power BI Report Server - Power BI Report Server Database Credentials
  • Review the summary
Configure Power BI Report Server - Power BI Report Server Database Summary
  • Wait for a moment until the database creation is finished.
Configure Power BI Report Server - Power BI Report Server Database created

Configure the Power BI Report Server Web Portal URL

  • Provide the virtual directory name and the port as you prefer. or leave the default values.
  • Click “Apply” to configure the Web Portal URL.
Configure Power BI Report Server - Web Portal URL
  • Once the web portal is configured, browse the web portal URL to make sure that the web portal is working properly.
Install and Configure Power BI Report Server

You may also like to read HTTP Error 503. The service is unavailable in Power BI

Configure the Power BI Report Server Encryption keys

To encrypt the sensitive data in the report server database like connection strings, credentials, you should take a backup of the symmetric key.

Backup Power BI Report Server Encryption keys

Note: the symmetric key backup is very significant mainly when you are planning to migrate or move to another Power BI Report Server.


Manage Power BI Report Server Web Portal Permission

Normally, the unauthenticated users will not be able to access the Power BI Report Server Web Portal URL and they will get the below error

Power BI Report Server Permission Issue

Check the detailed steps to manage SSRS & Power BI Report Server permissions at SSRS 2016: You are not allowed to view this folder. Contact your administrator to obtain the necessary permissions.


Download Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server

Steps

  • Open Power BI Report Server Web Portal URL.
  • Click on “Download“.
Install Power BI Desktop For Power BI Report Server
  • Click on “Power BI Desktop
Download Power BI Desktop For Power BI Report Server
  • Or use this Direct Link to download “Power BI Desktop“.
Power BI Desktop Download link For Power BI Report Server
  • Check “PBIDesktopRS_x64.msi“, next to download it.
Download Power BI Desktop x64 For Power BI Report Server

Install Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server

  • Double click on the downloaded file “PBIDesktopRS_x64.msi” to install the Power BI Desktop.
Install Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server
  • Accept the terms, then click Next.
Install Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server
  • Specify the installation folder, click “Next”.
Install Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server
  • Check create a desktop shortcut, then Click on “Install”
Install Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server
  • Wait for a moment till the Power BI Desktop is installed.
Install Microsoft Install Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server
  • Once the installation is finished, Click “Finish”.
Install Microsoft Install Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server

Create Report in Power BI Report Server using Power BI Desktop

  • Launch Microsoft Power BI Desktop.
Start Microsoft Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server
  • Get Data” from any available data source as you prefer,
Get Data from SQL Server in Microsoft Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server
  • Build your report as you prefer,
Create report in Microsoft Power BI Desktop for Power BI Report Server

Publish Report to Power BI Report Server

  • Go to “File” menu > “Save As” > “Power BI Report Server“.
Publish a report to Power BI report Server

Check also Missing Save To Power BI Report Server In Power BI Desktop

  • Specify the Report Server (Web Portal) URL for the Power BI Report Server.
Set the Power BI Report Server URL in Power BI Desktop
  • Specify the Power BI Report Name.
Save a report to Power BI report Server
  • Click “Save” to save The Report to Power BI Report Server.
Saving to Power BI Report Server
  • The report has been published to Power BI Report Server Properly.
The report is saved to Power BI Report Server

Browse Power BI Report in Power BI Report Server

  • Open the Power BI Report Server Web Portal.
  • You will find the published report as shown below:
Power BI Report in Report Server
  • Click on the report name to open it that should be opening properly now.
Show Power BI Report in Report Server

Embed Power BI Report without a toolbar

To show the Power BI Report as a full screen without a toolbar, you can use “?rs:embed=true” after the report name as shown below

http://reportserver/Reports/powerbi/QassasReport?rs:embed=true

Show Power BI Report as full screen

Power BI Report Server – Known Issues

We couldn’t run the report because we couldn’t connect to its data source

If you are using “DirectQuery” in Power BI Report, you may get this error

We couldn’t run the report because we couldn’t connect to its data source. The report or data source might not be configured correctly.

We couldn't run the report because we couldn't connect to its data source. The report or data source might not be configured correctly.

To overcome this issue, check Power BI: We couldn’t connect to the Analysis Services server. Make sure you’ve entered the connection string correctly.

HTTP Error 503. The service is unavailable.

After configuring Power BI Report server , If you have tried to browse the Power BI Portal URL, you may get this error “HTTP Error 503. The service is unavailable.

Install and Configure Power BI Report Server Step by Step

I answered this question at deBUG.to at HTTP Error 503. The service is unavailable in Power BI.

You are not allowed to view this folder

You may also get the below permission issue:

You are not allowed to view this folder Power BI

To overcome this issue, please check You are not allowed to view this folder. Contact your administrator to obtain the necessary permissions.


Conclusion

In conclusion, we have explained how to install and configure Power BI report Server step by step by doing the following:

Applied to
  • Power BI Report Server.
  • Power BI Desktop for Report Server.
Download

Follow me on GitHub to find the latest PBIX samples with data source.

You might also like to read
Have a Question?

If you have any related questions, please don’t hesitate to ask it at deBUG.to Community.

12 thoughts on “Install and Configure Power BI Report Server Step by Step”

  1. Christopher Deni

    This is the article I have found most easily for me to follow and understand with appropriate visual aids, Keep up the good work to the author!

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