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RLS vs Filter for current user

Environment:  SQL 2016, using Tabular models, Power BI, live connection with Tabular Models


I see a lot of people asking about filtering to "Current User", this is a simple and easy thing to do within SSRS as a hidden parameter that is filtered into the data query.  However, pretty much all of the answers are to do Row Level Security.  There is a very different need between filtering to current user and securing the data. 


Problem:  Same as a lot of people I want to create a dashboard/report where it auto filters to the current user, or at least defaults the filter to the current user.


Requirement: When a user opens the Power BI dashboard/report it should filter to their stuff.  Single dashboard as this is a corporate dashboard so if things are modified it's done one time and everyone has the same view of their information. 



I have a working version of Row Level Security on one of our Tabular Models, however this doesn't actually solve my problem.  I don't actually want to secure the data and only let the current user see their stuff.  If I were to implement RLS, then I would need 2 Tabular models on the same data, one to filter for current user and another to let them see everything if they want.  That's not a viable solution.  I found a work-around for date filtering to be current day/month/yr etc, but cannot find anything to do something similar with the current user.  I have used the USERNAME() for the RLS, however that cannot be used in a table column within the tabular model.


I'm not sure if having the USERNAME() function work dynamically at query time is on the roadmap of improvements or if anyone has found any other solution to get the report/dashboard to filter or default to the current user.

Community Support
Community Support



As far as I know, there is no elegant way. You may leave a comment and vote this idea up.

Community Support Team _ Sam Zha
If this post helps, then please consider Accept it as the solution to help the other members find it more quickly.

View solution in original post

Advocate V
Advocate V

@jdbusselman: I found this post while looking for a solution to the very same problem. I couldn't find a solution elsewhere so I tried myself and I think I found a usable workaround to achieve the desired result without having to use RLS.


  1. Create a table to use as a filter later on: "Filter Table" with one column, two values: "yes" and "no". I did it with M:
        Source = Table.FromRows(Json.Document(Binary.Decompress(Binary.FromText("i45WikwtVorViVbyy1eKjQUA", BinaryEncoding.Base64), Compression.Deflate)), let _t = ((type text) meta [Serialized.Text = true]) in type table [Choice = _t]),
        #"Changed Type" = Table.TransformColumnTypes(Source,{{"Choice", type text}}),
        #"Renamed Columns" = Table.RenameColumns(#"Changed Type",{{"Choice", "Show only my stuff?"}})
        #"Renamed Columns"
  2. Create a Measure that filters data using username():
    # my stuff = CALCULATE(
            'AllStuffTable'[UserName] = username()
  3. Create a Measure that chooses the measure above when the value "yes" is selected in the "Filter Table", otherwise show unfiltered data:
    # stuff = 
    SWITCH (
        SELECTEDVALUE ( 'Filter Table'[Show only my stuff?] );
        "yes"; [# my stuff)];
        COUNTROWS ( 'AllStuffTable')
  4. Create a data table with all desired fields an add the "# stuff" measure. By default, tables don't show rows where all measures are BLANK. We can use that, because for data that is not "my stuff" the measure "# stuff" will be BLANK and therefore excluded from the table.
  5. When filtering the "Filter Table" to "yes" or "no" you will see a filtered result in the data table or not. You could put the filter in the filter pane or as a slicer on the canvas for user to switch to "their stuff" an back.

Does that make sense?

@Sokon Do you have a pbi example to share as i do not succeed in implementing your solution ?





(that is email style usernames, or you can use USERNAME() for windows style users)

Measure 2
FilterByViewer = IF(selectedvalue(table[email])=[WhoIsWatching],1,0)

Drag Measure 2 as a filter for visual, select advanced filtering and set it to 
"Show items when value IS 1"

Community Support
Community Support



As far as I know, there is no elegant way. You may leave a comment and vote this idea up.

Community Support Team _ Sam Zha
If this post helps, then please consider Accept it as the solution to help the other members find it more quickly.
Not applicable

Yet again the solution is there is no solution, please upvote. Well done all round clap clap

Not applicable

Could I suggest having another status of Unresolvable? It saves me having to read through all the comments before I realise I'm completely wastiung my time

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