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Updated timeline for upgrading classic workspaces

Headshot of article author Dustin Askins
7/21/2021 update: We are ahead of schedule and ‘Upgrade all’ has been released and is available for all tenant admins.

 

Important updates for workspace admins and Power BI admins, we are extending the timeline for upgrading classic workspaces to new workspaces.

We are now targeting automatic upgrade of classic workspaces to new workspaces by April 2022. Though tools exist now for tenant admins and workspace admins to upgrade workspaces, we will release new tools like ‘Upgrade all’ for tenant admins to easily migrate all workspaces later this year.

 

List of key dates that have changed:

  • October July 2021
    • ‘Upgrade all’ workspaces tool within Power BI Admin portal released to all tenants
      • Update as of 7/21/2021 – We are ahead of schedule and ‘Upgrade all’ has been released and is available to all tenant admins.
    • Ability to create classic workspaces removed for all tenants
  • April 2022
    • Automatic upgrade of all classic workspaces to new workspaces will be performed by Microsoft

 

Please see the table below for a full list of past and future dates with new dates called out.

Roadmap Item Update Details
Workspace upgrade general availability

 

Generally Available Workspace admins and Power BI admins can upgrade classic workspaces to new workspaces.
Allowing Power BI Admins to block creation of classic workspaces Available as of August 2020 Learn more
Allowing Power BI Admins to hide empty classic workspaces Available as of August 2020 To use this capability, enable the block classic workspace creation tenant setting in the Power BI Admin portal.

Previously, we stated we’d provide a distinct Power BI Admin portal option to control this behavior. However, we’re no longer planning to provide a dedicated option.

Allowing Power BI Admins to upgrade classic workspaces

 

Available as of December 2020 This blog post covers these capabilities.
Block classic workspace creation tenant set to Enabled

 

Implemented in January 2021 Block classic workspace creation tenant set to Enabled for all tenants.

Power BI admins are able to change it back to Disabled to keep making classic workspaces, but this setting will be removed in October 2021

Tools for bulk upgrade of classic workspace for Power BI Admins Implemented in December 2020

Enhancements rolling out now, June 2021

This blog post covers bulk upgrade capabilities plus enhancements rolling out now, June 2021.

See plans below to extend these capabilities with the option to upgrade all classic workspaces eliminating the need to pick workspaces to upgrade.

We do not plan to provide an API for workspaces upgrade.

Upgrade all classic workspaces for Power BI Admins

 

New date
Available in July 2021
By the end of July 2021 the Power BI Admin portal will give tenant admins the option to queue up and upgrade all classic workspaces, eliminating the need to pick workspaces to upgrade
Deprecation of classic workspace creation

 

New date
Removal in October 2021
Full removal of the ability to create classic workspaces. The tenant setting to Enable and Disable will be removed from the Power BI Admin portal.
Content Pack Deprecation New date
October 2021
Removal of all remaining content packs.
In the previous roadmap updates we’ve emphasized the need for organizations to move away from content packs. Power BI apps and shared datasets offer compelling replacement options.

Content packs will be deleted from the Power BI service in October 2021.

Automatic upgrade of classic workspaces

 

New date
April 2022
We will start to automatically upgrade all remaining classic workspaces to the new workspace experience.

 

A recap of how to upgrade workspaces and related changes…

Workspace upgrade generally available

Workspace upgrade is GA. Workspace Admins have a banner at the top of their classic workspaces encouraging them to upgrade their workspaces.

Banner displayed to workspace admins of classic workspaces to help them upgrade their workspace.

 

Power BI Admins can upgrade workspaces

The Power BI Admin portal workspaces list has the option to bulk upgrade up to 100 workspaces at a time or queue up all workspaces for upgrade via Upgrade all.

Bulk upgrade
To use bulk upgrade, select one or more workspaces with type Group and then press the Upgrade button. The UI allows selecting 100 workspaces at a time giving admins the ability to do bulk upgrades. The upgrades are queued and will execute asynchronously. The admin can queue as many workspaces for upgrade as they desire. There is no API for this capability.

The workspaces list in the Power BI Admin Portal with the upgrade option when classic workspaces, those with type set to Group are selected.

Upgrade all
Admins may also choose to use Upgrade all and queue up all classic workspaces for upgrade to new workspaces.

The Upgrade all button available from the admin portal

Typically, a Power BI admin-initiated workspace upgrade will take a few minutes to complete. If many workspaces are queued for upgrade or Upgrade all is used, it can take several days to complete the upgrade. To upgrade a workspace right away, contact the workspace admin, who can upgrade the workspace immediately through the workspace settings pane.

Importantly, Power BI admin-initiated workspace upgrade makes permanent changes to the workspace. Notably, content packs will be removed as part of the upgrade. These permanent changes can’t be undone. It’s best to review the impacts of workspace upgrade and educate workspace admins to potential impacts prior to executing a program that upgrades workspaces through the Power BI admin-initiated process. Lastly, after the upgrade is completed, it’s important that workspace admins follow the steps to take after upgrade; like updating permissions based on new roles and modifying the contact list for the workspace. Learn more on those steps.

The upgrade pane shown to admins before they start an admin-initiated workspace upgrade.

Above: The upgrade confirmation pane shown before the upgrade starts. Be sure to review the permanent changes list before starting the upgrade.

If Admins use Upgrade all the confirmation pane will also note how long upgrades may take.

Upgrade all warning, upgrade all can take several days to complete

Power BI admins can track progress of upgrades through the Workspace upgrade status column. The states are provided below:

  • Pending – the upgrade is queued, it can be canceled
  • In Progress – the upgrade is currently in progress
  • Completed – the upgrade completed
    • Please see notes on State: Orphaned scenarios below
  • Failed – the upgrade failed because of a validation rule
    • If you have workspaces that previously Failed upgrade, please try again in as we recently made enhancements to how upgrade works, rolled out in June 2021.

The workspace upgrade status column in the Power BI admin portal workspaces list ui showing an in progress workspace upgrade.

When a workspace upgrade is in Pending status it can be canceled. A Cancel All Upgrades button is available once any workspace has been queued for upgrade. Additionally, the “…” menu gives the option to cancel a specific workspace upgrade.

Once a workspace upgrade reaches In Progress status, it can’t be canceled.

After a workspace upgrade is in Completed status, the workspace admin can go back to a classic workspace for 30 days. After 30 days the option to go back to a classic workspace is no longer available. The details of any permanent changes made to the workspace are visible in the Details page available from the “…” menu of the workspace.

If the upgrade Failed, the detailed reason is available in the Details page. Work with the workspace admin to ensure the workspace can pass upgrade validation rules before trying again.

 

Note on workspaces in the Orphaned state after upgrade:
If an admin changed outside of Power BI (like in AAD or Office 365) it’s possible for a former classic workspace in Power BI to be “orphaned”, without an admin, after upgrade. Please find these workspaces and assign new admins. More on how to do that below.

For those workspaces that no longer have an admin, the upgraded workspace will show as Orphaned under the State column. Please go through and assign new admins to Orphaned workspaces, you can do this right from the Admin portal by selecting the workspace(s) you would like to assign an admin to and clicking Access.

Screenshot of access management in admin portal

 

Workspace admins will receive an email when their workspace is upgraded by the Power BI admin.

Helpful tip – use text filters from column headers to find the workspaces you want to take action on:

Workspaces filtering in Admin portal

  • Find classic workspaces by filtering the Type column by Group, you can then easily select the workspaces you want to upgrade.
  • Find Orphaned workspaces by filtering the State column by Orphaned, you can then assign an Admin in bulk or one by one if you would like.

Content packs removal

Below is an example of what is shown if a content pack was removed during the upgrade.

The workspace details pane shows a summary of permanent changes or any errors that occurred during the upgrade. The example shows that a content pack was removed during the upgrade.

As noted in the timeline above, all remaining Content Packs will be removed in October 2021, which marks the final chapter of the content pack deprecation journey. Content packs have been deprecated for several years. In February 2021 we removed the ability to create or edit content packs in classic workspaces. Customers should migrate to Power BI apps and shared datasets as replacements for content pack ahead of these changes to avoid impact to operations.

 

Have feedback or ideas?

We’re eager to hear how these capabilities are being used in your organization and to answer any questions you have. Leave a comment on this blog or submit an idea if you have a feature request.

 

Next steps:

Learn about Power BI admin-initiated workspace upgrade

Learn about workspace upgrade