Configure and manage capacities in Power BI Premium

Managing Power BI Premium involves creating, managing, and monitoring Premium capacities. This article provides step-by-step instructions; for an overview of capacities; see Managing Premium capacities.

Learn how to manage Power BI Premium and Power BI Embedded capacities, which provide reserved resources for your content.

Screenshot that shows the Power B I Premium capacity settings screen.

Capacity is at the heart of the Power BI Premium and Power BI Embedded offerings. It is a set of resources reserved for exclusive use by your organization. Having a capacity enables you to publish dashboards, reports, and datasets to users throughout your organization without having to purchase per-user licenses for them. It also offers dependable, consistent performance for the content hosted in capacity. For more information, see What is Power BI Premium?.


  • Premium Gen2 simplifies the management of Premium capacities, and reduces management overhead.

  • You can get Premium Per User (PPU) licenses for individuals, which provide many of the features and capabilities of a Premium capacity, and incorporate all functionality included with a Power BI Pro license.

Manage capacity

After you have purchased capacity nodes in Microsoft 365, you set up the capacity in the Power BI admin portal. You manage Power BI Premium capacities in the Capacity settings section of the portal.

Capacity settings within the admin portal

You manage a capacity by selecting the name of the capacity. This takes you to the capacity management screen.

Select capacity name to get to capacity assignment screen

If no workspaces have been assigned to the capacity, you will see a message about assigning a workspace to the capacity.

Renew your capacity

Each capacity has a certain amount of v-cores allocated to it. When the v-cores expire, your capacity stops working. To renew your capacity, visit the Microsoft 365 admin center.


If your v-cores expire, you may see this error in the Power BI admin portal:

One or more of your premium capacity v-cores have expired. Please contact your tenant administrator or Microsoft account representative to learn whether these v-cores will be renewed.

Setting up a new capacity (Power BI Premium)

The admin portal shows the number of virtual cores (v-cores) that you have used and that you still have available. The total number of v-cores is based on the Premium SKUs that you have purchased. For example, purchasing a P3 and a P2 results in 48 available cores – 32 from the P3 and 16 from the P2.

Used and available v-cores for Power BI Premium

If you have available v-cores, set up your new capacity by following these steps.

  1. Select Set up new capacity.

  2. Give your capacity a name.

  3. Define who the admin is for this capacity.

  4. Select your capacity size. Available options are dependent on how many available v-cores you have. You can't select an option that is larger than what you have available.

    Available Premium capacity sizes

  5. Select Set up.

    Set up a new capacity

Capacity admins, as well as Power BI admins and global administrators, then see the capacity listed in the admin portal.

Capacity settings

  1. In the Premium capacity management screen, under Actions, select the gear icon to review and update settings.

    Capacity actions in the capacity management area

  2. You can see who the service admins are, the SKU/size of the capacity, and what region the capacity is in.

    Capacity settings

  3. You can also rename or delete a capacity.

    Delete and apply buttons for capacity settings in Power BI Premium


Power BI Embedded capacity settings are managed in the Microsoft Azure portal.

Change capacity size

Power BI admins and global administrators can change Power BI Premium capacity. Capacity admins who are not a Power BI admin or global administrator don't have this option.

  1. Select the capacity name you want to change the size of.

  2. Select Change size. You can see the

    Screenshot that shows the Power BI Change Size button for capacity.

  3. On the Change size screen, upgrade or downgrade your capacity as appropriate.


    To upgrade to a P4 or a P5 capacity you need to buy a few smaller SKUs that will add up to the size of the capacity you want.

    Change Power BI Premium capacity size drop down

    Administrators are free to create, resize and delete nodes, so long as they have the requisite number of v-cores.

    P SKUs cannot be downgraded to EM SKUs. You can hover over any disabled options to see an explanation.


If your Power BI Premium capacity is experiencing high resource usage, resulting in performance or reliability issues, you can receive notification emails to identify and resolve the issue. See capacity and reliability notifications for more information.

Manage user permissions

You can assign additional capacity admins, and assign users that have contributor permissions. Users that have contributor permissions can assign a workspace to a capacity if they are an admin of that workspace. They can also assign their personal My Workspace to the capacity. Users with contributor permissions do not have access to the admin portal.


For Power BI Embedded, capacity admins are defined in the Microsoft Azure portal.

Expand Contributor permissions, then add users or groups as appropriate.

Screenshot that shows the Contributor Permissions menu

Assign a workspace to a capacity

There are two ways to assign a workspace to a capacity: in the admin portal; and from a workspace.

Assign from the admin portal

Capacity admins, along with Power BI admins and global administrators, can bulk assign workspaces in the premium capacity management section of the admin portal. When you manage a capacity, you see a Workspaces assigned to this capacity section that allows you to assign workspaces.

Screenshot that shows the Workspace assignment area of capacity management.

  1. Select Assign workspaces.

  2. Select an option for Apply to.

    Assign workspaces

    Selection Description
    Workspaces by users When you assign workspaces by user, or group, all the workspaces that the user or group is admin of become part of the Premium capacity, including the user's personal workspace. The users automatically get workspace assignment permissions.
    This includes workspaces already assigned to a different capacity.
    Specific workspaces Enter the name of a specific workspace to assign to the selected capacity.
    The entire organization's workspaces Assigning the entire organization's workspaces to Premium capacity assigns all workspaces and My Workspaces, in your organization, to this Premium capacity. In addition, all current and future users will have the permission to reassign individual workspaces to this capacity.
  3. Select Apply.

Assign from workspace settings

You can also assign a workspace to a Premium capacity from the settings of that workspace. To move a workspace into a capacity, you must have admin permissions to that workspace, and also capacity assignment permissions to that capacity. Note that workspace admins can always remove a workspace from Premium capacity.

  1. Edit a workspace by selecting the ellipsis (. . .) then selecting Edit this workspace.

    Screenshot of the Edit this workspace context menu.

  2. Under Edit this workspace, expand Advanced.

  3. Select the capacity that you want to assign this workspace to.

    Capacity selection drop down

  4. Select Save.

Once saved, the workspace and all its contents are moved into Premium capacity without any experience interruption for end users.

Power BI Report Server product key

On the Capacity settings tab of the Power BI admin portal, you will have access to your Power BI Report Server product key. This will only be available for Global Admins or users assigned the Power BI service administrator role and if you have purchase a Power BI Premium SKU.

Power BI Report Server key within Capacity settings

Selecting Power BI Report Server key will display a dialog contain your product key. You can copy it and use it with the installation.

Power BI Report Server product key

For more information, see Install Power BI Report Server.

Next steps

Managing Premium capacities

More questions? Try asking the Power BI Community

Power BI has released Power BI Premium Gen2, which improves the Power BI Premium experience with improvements in the following:

  • Performance
  • Per-user licensing
  • Greater scale
  • Improved metrics
  • Autoscaling
  • Reduced management overhead

For more information about Power BI Premium Gen2, see Power BI Premium Generation 2.