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Use of Data Flow premium features without PPU

Hello everyone,

this is my first post here.


I work in small-medium sized company. We have been working with Power BI for almost two years now and have about 60 Pro license user. In this time we have managed to create several reports. They are all built with following "architecture":

Local SQL-Databases with data tables customized (basic transformation) for reporting purpose-->PBI Desktop Power Query incl. report specific customizations / business logic transformations --> PBI Desktop Master Dataset --> PBI Service Master Distribution Workspace --> multiple reports connected to the Master Dataset.


Now we want to implement Data Flows in this "architecture" so we can also centralize and reuse the Power Query part.

I have already tested Data Flows with some examples from our data set  with my Pro license. It turned out that without PPU license we need to create a lot of reference tables where the option "enable to load" is disabled so they are not loaded into data set, otherwise we will trigger the linked or computed entities which are part of PPU license.


Now my question is:

Can I create one or two PPU workspaces with Data Flows where all the "heave" lifting transformation are done incl. linked and computed entities. And after that I would link this finished and ready to use Data Flow into NON PPU workspace, but here I will disable "the enable to load option" of this linked Data Flow and create a table reference of it. And only this referenced table will be used as source for the Master Dataset.


So only I will need the PPU license and all the other users who only consume the report will not need the PPU license.  Will it work and is it "legal"? The purpose of such construction is of course to save costs  for the company. Or is there another way to do so?

Memorable Member
Memorable Member

Hi @VadGln

 Why not set up a small test and let us know how it goes?

If this post helps, then please consider accepting it as the solution to help other members find it more quickly.

Yes, that will be our next step. However, I was hoping that someone already has more experience with this. Especially if it does work now, whether such action is "legal" from Microsoft's point of view.

Resolver II
Resolver II

I'm not sure this will work, but as an alternative you could follow Matthew Roche's Maxim of Data Transformation which states: Data should be transformed as far upstream as possible, and as far downstream as necessary. Maybe move all of your transformations into SQL.

Hope this helps.

Yes, thank you. I know the article, based on it we have already done the first step, the tables with Basic transformation. To implement the specific/further calculations in the tables, need more time resources from SQL admins and they don't have much of it unfortunately. That's why we wanted to do it in data flow, there I can do directly by myself.

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