You can store and manage Power BI reports on premises in the Power BI Report Server web portal, just as you can in the Power BI service (https://powerbi.com). You create and edit reports in Power BI Desktop, and then publish them to the web portal just the same. Then report readers in your organization can view them in a browser or in a Power BI mobile app on their mobile device.

If you've already created Power BI reports in Power BI Desktop, then you're ready to create Power BI reports for Power BI Report Server. If not, here are four quick steps to get you started.

Step 1: Install Power BI Desktop

You may already have installed Power BI Desktop to create reports for the Power BI service. We recommend installing the version of Power BI Desktop optimized for Power BI Report Server so you know the server and the app are always in sync. You can have both versions of Power BI Desktop on the same computer. See Install Power BI Desktop optimized for Power BI Report Server for details.

  1. Select New > Power BI Report.

    If you don't have the Power BI Desktop app installed already, it leads you through the installation process now.

  2. At the end of the installation process, check Start Power BI Desktop now.

    It starts automatically and you're ready to go.

  3. If you're not familiar with Power BI Desktop, consider watching the videos on the welcome screen.

Step 2: Select a data source

Currently, the only data source supported with Power BI Report Server is a live connection to a SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS)tabular model or multidimensional cube. More data sources will be added in future releases. Read more about connecting to data sources.

  1. From the welcome screen, select Get Data.

    Or on the Home tab, select Get Data.

  2. Select Analysis Services.

  3. Fill in Server, and optionally, Database.

  4. Make sure Connect live is selected > OK.

Step 3: Design your report

Here's the fun part: You get to create visuals that illustrate your data.

For example, you could create a funnel chart of customers and group values by yearly income.

  1. In Visualizations, select Funnel chart.
  2. Drag the field to be counted to the Values well. If it's not a numeric field, Power BI Desktop automatically makes it a Count of the value.
  3. Drag the field to group on to the Group well.

Step 4: Save your report to the report server

When your report is ready, you save it to Power BI Report Server.

  1. On the File menu, select Save as > Power BI Report Server.

  2. Now you can view it in the browser.

Considerations and limitations

Reports in Power BI Report Server and in the Power BI service (http://powerbi.com) act almost exactly the same, but a few features are different.

In a browser, Power BI Report Server reports support all visualizations, including:

  • Custom visuals

In a browser, Power BI Report Server reports don’t support:

  • R visuals
  • ArcGIS maps
  • Breadcrumbs

In the Power BI mobile apps, Power BI Report Server reports support all the functionality, including:

  • Phone report layout

In the Power BI mobile apps, Power BI Report Server reports don’t support:

  • R visuals
  • ArcGIS maps
  • Custom visuals
  • Breadcrumbs
  • Geofiltering or bar codes

Next steps

There are so many great resources for creating reports in Power BI Desktop. These links are a good starting point.

Install Power BI Desktop optimized for Power BI Report Server
User handbook

More questions? Try asking the Power BI Community