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team_steve
Advocate I
Advocate I

Using Power BI service without an Office 365 account

Hello. I think I might be losing the plot.

I have an Office 365 account and Power BI pro. This was my starting point and arranged by the company so I know little about the free options.

I'm forever showing it to others and explaining how good Power BI it is.

People ask me if they can use it and I've been saying that you can use the Power BI Desktop but would need an Office 365 account to use the Power BI Service to publish and access the data on the web. But is this actually true.

 

I've been reading further and it sounds like the service may be available to non office 365 people too. But I cannot find anything definative explaining this.

I've had similar issues understanding the Power BI pro versioning too though this is down to my understanding of Office 365 licensing, E3, E5 tenants etc - not something I deal with.

 

Basically I know someone who is really keen to use Power BI but doesn't have Office 365. Can they use it? No need to get bogged down in which features are available in this thread - just can they write a basic report in the Desktop version and publish to the Power BI Service for access online?

2 ACCEPTED SOLUTIONS

@team_steve

 

The free trial is for pro features. Power BI service can be available to non office 365 people, but only free license. To use Pro feature, they have to get Office 365 account for their organization.

 

Reference:

Purchasing Power BI Pro

 

Regards,

View solution in original post

All – to answer this question, we need to get very crisp on terminology.

 

There are accounts (e.g. joe@contoso.com) and then there are licenses which are assigned to those accounts (e.g. Power BI Free, Power BI Pro, Office 365 E3).

  

To sign into the Power BI service, regardless of whether you’re a free or Pro user, your users need an Azure AD (AAD) account. This is commonly mis-referred to as an “O365 account,” in part because the Office 365 admin portal can be used to create additional AAD accounts. Administrators within a tenant can create at no cost. Docs on AAD Docs on adding users

 

Once an AAD account is created, licenses can be attached to that account. All accounts can be provided the Power BI Free license for free. If you provide that account with a Power BI Pro license, then that user will get access to Pro features. An Office 365 license is not needed nor required in order to use Power BI Pro.

 

-Sirui

 

The community post below is very confusing. Please disregard it. We will get it updated.

View solution in original post

20 REPLIES 20
harboura
New Member

I see the word "solved" but no solution in the thread. I setup power BI with the free trial. it was working. Now the trial is over and im ready to hand over my money but it still looks like i have to set up an office 365 account to do this. Is the solution to sign up for a free trial every month?
Anonymous
Not applicable

I'm facing the same issues. added the user domain into Azure Active Directory somehow still unable to purchase POWER BI PRO licenses... anyone have clearer solution for this? thanks...

Greg_Deckler
Super User
Super User

That question has come up multiple times and not sure there has been a clear resolution. I think the best thing for them to do would be to sign-up for a free trial on the site and go for it. If it lets them use it, great. I have a feeling though that behind the scenes it is provisioning an O365 account even if you don't know it.


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Thank you for the reply. I've seen that you reply to many posts and clearly know more than most about the system.

I agree that moving people towards an Office 365 account might be end game and I'm fine with this, it's amazing that the desktop version is completely free

 

Signing up for a free trial sounds odd. I assume you mean a free trial of Power BI rather than Office 365. But then what are they signing up a for? A free trial of free software or a free trial of pro features (which they don't want, at least in the first instance).

 

I'm really confused about this. Maybe I'll have to continue only offering this to people using Office 365.

@team_steve

 

The free trial is for pro features. Power BI service can be available to non office 365 people, but only free license. To use Pro feature, they have to get Office 365 account for their organization.

 

Reference:

Purchasing Power BI Pro

 

Regards,

View solution in original post

Hi there

 

Is this stil the case - ie that you need an O365 subscription to use PowerBI?

 

Regards

Chris

Not it isn't the case.

 

I found the accepted answer a bit confusing and would like to answer the whole thread again.

You dear reader are the IT-Admin. Your users X,Y,Z are users from the controlling department of your company "WhatEver".

The users heard that Power BI offers great features and got trial accounts without talking to the IT department. How did these users proceed?

 

1. They registered with their email x@whatever.com, y@whatever.com [...]
2. Microsoft has created an AzureAD in the background. (You don't know that yet 😉 )
3 The trial has now expired and your Users want to extend it. They now contact you.
4. Your company does not use O365, Sharepoint online etc. yet.
5. You register for instance also to PowerBI or you log in to office365 where you can also find this grid in the left hand corner

6. If you are also registered to Power BI -> You enter the PowerBI Service

7. 

2019-08-18 10_52_04-Posteingang - Josef.Prakljacic@braincourt.com - Outlook.png

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8. You click on Admin

2019-08-18 10_54_11-Power BI.png

9. You see that page

2019-08-18 10_54_48-Become the admin.png

10. You do that thing here -> https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/users-groups-roles/domains-admin-takeover

11. In the O365 Portal/Tenant now your are able to buy&assign the licenses.

 

 

Short Q&A

Do you need O365 licenses? -> No

Do you need an O365 Tenant which actualy is an AzureAD Tenant -> Yes

 

Very Important Smiley Very Happy -> If you think that this post was helpful. Please share some Kudos 

Anonymous
Not applicable

Thanks for the detailed explanation.

So is there a cost behind "Do you need an O365 Tenant which actualy is an AzureAD Tenant -> Yes" ?

I have a similar case as the original case... I work in a company where they have everthing purchased and just... use powerbi.

Someone outside the company, liked it and wants to use it in his 3 employee company, but has no MS licencing products... is there a free - low cost path to recomend to them? a monthly fee is too much for this company and they wont be able to go that route but work ok if its sommething they can pay once, and host any database locally ... 

 

Thanks!

Diego

Hey @Anonymous,

 

there is no cost behind the default/basic AzureAD Tenant. So your friend can purchase 3 pro licences and just pay for them.

Actually I wouldn't even buy this pro licenses. If you have 3 colleagues I would just use PowerBI Desktop and share the Reportfile over a Fileshare. Then you don't even have to pay for PowerBI.

 

BR,

Josef

Hi Josef

 

Exactly the info I needed and no one seemed able to provide.

Thanks so much  - really appreciate it!!

 

Regards

Chris

I did not accept this as the solution!! I assume the moderators did, but I did not! In fact the solution does not answer the question I asked. I wanted to know if non office 365 user can use Power BI. My question is NOT related to Pro features in any way at all.

Letting anyone other than the question asker mark an answer as solved is surely bad practise and I'm losing trust in the other 'Accepted' solutions I see on this forum now.

 

Please stop doing this!

 

 

All – to answer this question, we need to get very crisp on terminology.

 

There are accounts (e.g. joe@contoso.com) and then there are licenses which are assigned to those accounts (e.g. Power BI Free, Power BI Pro, Office 365 E3).

  

To sign into the Power BI service, regardless of whether you’re a free or Pro user, your users need an Azure AD (AAD) account. This is commonly mis-referred to as an “O365 account,” in part because the Office 365 admin portal can be used to create additional AAD accounts. Administrators within a tenant can create at no cost. Docs on AAD Docs on adding users

 

Once an AAD account is created, licenses can be attached to that account. All accounts can be provided the Power BI Free license for free. If you provide that account with a Power BI Pro license, then that user will get access to Pro features. An Office 365 license is not needed nor required in order to use Power BI Pro.

 

-Sirui

 

The community post below is very confusing. Please disregard it. We will get it updated.

View solution in original post

OK, but if you have an O365 E5 license, do you have a Power BI Pro license?

Hey @jhammond1 ,

 

yes its included then.

Most of my customers had E3 (where it isn't included)

 

BR,

Josef

I can see how in Azure to add a previously purchased license to a user in Azure Active Directory Blade.  However, how do I purchase a license if I don't have Office 365 for my organization?

I can see how in Azure to add a previously purchased license to a user in Azure Active Directory Blade.  However, how do I purchase a license if I don't have Office 365 for my organization?

Anonymous
Not applicable

Hi Sirui,

I've just purchased Pro Licences for an organisation without O365, but were advised that i need a Tenant assigned to the onmicrosoft domain was needed. Now I'm stuck (apparently) as I need to assign thees licences to the company domain, but it's proving to be much harder than I thought it would be...

 

any suggestion on how I may add the domain to the tenant?

 

Thanks

Just after confirmation on this point - Does Power BI Pro no longer require Sharepoint Online Plan 2 for collaboration?

ame54
Frequent Visitor

Is there any more material or documentation coz I am still not sure I fully understood this.

Specifically, for the free user for Power BI services.

 

So even for the Free BI services the account I’m using needs to have an ADD account, and there are no free ways to create an ADD account?

Thank you for clearing up this question. I have little experience of O365 or the admin portal for it, which doesn't help.
With some help from others at work we were able to figure it out and are now happily using Power BI. It's very good.

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