All Aboard, the Power BI Premium Gen2 Train!

Power BI Premium Gen2 is finally generally available. If you are on Premium Gen1, let’s get started on Gen2 – let me tell you why.


The Evolved Architecture of Power BI Premium

Microsoft has improved the architecture of Power BI Premium that has resulted in faster operations. According to Microsoft, users should see up to a 16x increase in analytics operations compared to previous Power BI Premium Gen1. 

This increase means a faster refresh duration of datasets and quicker user interaction. These are the general improvements we should see, but, also depends on how you set up your reporting architecture, so don’t be surprised if your analytics operations are only 10x faster and not 16x.

Refresh all the Datasets!

Yes, thanks to the evolved architecture, there is now no limit with concurrent refreshes with Gen2. The previous version capped at 6 concurrent refreshes for P1 Node, which means that the rest will be queued and must wait for their turn.

The dataset scheduled refresh is still at 48 times per dataset per day. Now, you can schedule more datasets at the same time. If you want to trigger more refreshes, look into XMLA endpoints.

Microsoft has also mentioned that there is now a complete separation between report interaction and scheduled refreshes!

Learn more about refreshes in Gen2 here

Auto-Scale: Get More Power When You Need It

There are times when more analytical interactions or operations are happening, thus we might approach or exceed the capacity limit. With Auto-scale, there will be no more throttling nor slowing down because another V-Core will step in and perform all the needed tasks!

V-Core is pay-as-you-go and can be set up in Azure. You will receive another V-Core for analytical needs for the period of 24hr for just $85 USD when it goes over the limit. This is perfect for the end of year reporting traffic or for those machine learning models that you don’t need to run every day.  

Learn more about setup, usage, and monitoring here

Monitor and Administer Your Power BI Better!

Forget 90 days usage metrics data retention with Gen1, there will be more in-depth built in-reporting for capacity metrics and usage metrics, which include workspaces, reports, performance, users, and error summary. You will receive notifications that can be configured by the PowerBI admin.

I’ve heard through the grapevine that there might be a workspace provided just for Power BI Admins, where you can access all the fun and exciting admin usage data in the form of a dataset. One can then create a customized admin dashboard and mash-in metrics that are important to your organization. Let’s see if this is true when Gen2 is fully rolled out!

Change Is coming and It Is Inevitable

According to the current timeline, the automated migration from Gen1 to Gen2 is set to kick off on 15 Jan 2022 March 2022*. But your organization can flip the switch and enjoy Gen2 capabilities right away.

Things to Consider before Flipping the Switch

Well, there is only one thing to be aware of, once you flip the switch, the Gen1 capacity metric app will be inactive, no more data will be sent to it. So if you are relying on the app, make proper preparations before migrating to Gen2. 

Lastly, as we all know, this technology progresses rapidly and things might change as quickly as I write this blog. I will try to keep this information as up-to-date as possible, but if you noticed any incorrect or outdated information, let us know in the comments!

Wondering about Power BI training? Visit our training pages to see a full list of our available courses!

Learn more about Power BI Premium Gen2 here

*Based on updated timeline from Microsoft on 4 Jan 2022. See here.

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