A Fool-Proof Way To Share Power Apps With External Users
Power Apps created for use inside a company can be shared with external users outside of the organization as well. External users require the same licensing as internal users but there is a different method to set them up vs. internal users. We can make sharing easier by placing all Power Apps external users inside of an Azure Active Directory security group and automatically granting app access and licensing to all users within the group In this article I will demonstrate a fool-proof way to share Power Apps with external users.
Table Of Contents:
• Introduction: The Safety Inspections App
• Add External User As A Guest In Azure Active Directory
• Create An Azure AD Security Group For External Users
• Assign The External User A Power Apps License
• Share The Power Apps App With A Group Of External Users
• Share The SharePoint List With An External User
• Login To The Power Apps App As An External User
Introduction: The Safety Inspections App
The Safety Inspections App is used by External Safety Consultants at a construction company to perform safety inspections. The external safety consultants work at another firm but need access to the construction company’s Power Apps app.
Add External User As A Guest In Azure Active Directory
External Power Apps users must be added as guest users in Azure Active Directory. To do this, open the Global Admin Center from the Apps menu. Only users with administrator access can see this admin center.
Go to the Users section and select Guest Users. Then Add a guest user.
On the New user setup screen choose whether to create a new user account in your organization or invite a guest user with their existing email. Assign a name, email address, first name and last name.
Then write a personal message to the external user you are sharing the Power Apps app with. This will be included in their email invitation to our organization.
The external user will receive an email from Microsoft like this. No action is required. It simply notifies them they were added to the organization.
Create An Azure AD Security Group For External Users
External users also require a Power Apps license to use an app inside our organization. But when we try to give the guest user a license in the Global Admin Center there is no option to assign one. The assign a license tab is not visible for guest users.
Instead, we must create a group for external users in Azure Active Directory and apply licenses to every member of the group. Go to portal.azure.com and open Azure Active Directory.
Select Groups from the left navigation menu.
Then add a New group.
Choose the Group type “Security” and give the group a name and description. Make yourself an owner of the group.
Select Members, add the external user to the group then close the menu and click Create. The new group will now appear in the list of all groups
Assign The External User A Power Apps License
Now that we’ve created a new group for our external user we can configure it to apply Power Apps licenses to every member who joins. Open the External Safety Consultants group.
Go to the Licenses menu and select Assignments.
On the update licenses assignments screen select the licenses the external user will need to run the Power Apps app. The licensing required will be different based on whether we are sharing an app with premium vs. non-premium connectors or a standalone canvas app vs. a customized SharePoint list form. Check out the official Microsoft documentation to confirm which licenses should be applied.
Click Save once finished. We are done setting up the Azure Active Directory group for external users.
Share The Power Apps App With A Group Of External Users
The external user has been created, we’ve setup a new group and applied Power Apps licenses. Its finally time to share our Power Apps app with the external user. Go to make.powerapps.com, click on the three dots our app and select Share.
Type in the name of our Security Group External Safety Consultants then click Save. This will share the app with every member of the group. What we’ve done here is make it so everyone who is a part of this group gets an app and a Power Apps licenses. Its a pretty simple system to maintain.
Share The SharePoint List With An External User
Sharing the app itself is not enough. Every datasource connected to the app must also have read & write permissions for the external user. In this example, we’ll grant the external user access to a SharePoint list.
Open the SharePoint List settings.
Select Permissions for this list.
A SharePoint list has exactly the same permissions as the SharePoint site by default. This concept is called “inheritance.” To give the external user access to only a specific SharePoint list we must stop inheriting permissions from the SharePoint site.
On the next screen select Grant Permissions.
Then share the Safety Inspections SharePoint list with the External Safety Consultants group. Repeat these steps for every SharePoint list connected to the Safety Inspections app.
Login To The Power Apps App As An External User
We are done sharing the Power Apps app with an external user. They can login by clicking on the link in their invitation email.
The first time an external user logs into the organization they will be prompted to review permissions. Click Accept.
The Power Apps app and all of its datasources are now shared with the external user.
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