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kevhav
Continued Contributor
Continued Contributor

Can I back up/protect reports in the Power BI Service?

I use Power BI Desktop to create a dataset, and publish the dataset to an app workspace.

 

Then, several other "analyst"-type users create and publish reports, in the Power BI Service, based on my dataset.

 

What if one user accidentally deletes or modifies another user's report? 

 

Is there any way to back up—or otherwise protect—the reports that are created directly in the Service? It seems like the answer is "no" -- I have found this post ... and these three ideas.

 

So, what are people doing about this?

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION
v-jiascu-msft
Employee
Employee

Hi @kevhav,

 

Maybe there is a workaround. We can use the connector "Power BI Service" to connect to the same dataset in the workspace. Then create reports and publish them to the Service. So users don't touch the other reports and don't have the possibility to delete the dataset. The most important thing is every reports has a backup in the Desktop files. There are still some restrictions. Please refer to: powerbi-desktop-report-lifecycle-datasets.

 

Best Regards!

Dale

Community Support Team _ Dale
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

5 REPLIES 5
Anonymous
Not applicable

Hi,

 

I have the same issue this post owner facing. According to our policy, IT is creating the dataset, but Analysists are responsible for creation of reports in Power BI Service within the same App Workspace.

I need to backup/restore the reports within this Workspace on daily bases. How could I do that?

 

Thanks

Mohab

kevhav
Continued Contributor
Continued Contributor

Hi @Anonymous,

 

I did find that it should be possible to use the Power BI REST API to programatically...

  1. "Get Reports In Group" to generate a list of reports in a workspace; then...
  2. Iterate over that list to "Export Report" and download each one as a .pbix

 

However, I have not implemented this, yet.

 

Because, since I originally started this thread, I have changed my datasets to use incremental refresh policies. Now, I cannot export any reports associated with those datasets! Per thisdatasets with incremental refresh policies cannot be exported.

 

But what was unexpected (and silly!) is that if I create a report with a "Power BI datasets" live connection to such a dataset, and publish the report to the Service...then the report also cannot subsequently be downloaded...just because it points to a dataset with an incremental refresh policy. (Frustrating!)

 

To hopefully change that, I posted this idea. And I also really like this idea. Please vote for them!

 

As much as possible, I think reports should be separate from datasets. And furthermore, reports should always be easy to download from the Service, without the data! So that they can be backed up, modified and re-published.

kevhav
Continued Contributor
Continued Contributor

@Seth_C_Bauer -- thanks for the suggestion. Backing up my original Desktop PBIX file is no problem. The challenge is, what about the reports that are created directly in the Service, based on the published dataset? Are you suggesting that for each such report, I use the "Download report (preview)" functionality to export the report as a PBIX? If so, I think that wouldn't work for two reasons...

  1. It seems to download the whole dataset with it. Right? The dataset is hundreds of megabytes in size, and we have many such reports. I think this would be too much downloading/uploading time. And too much wasted storage.
  2. Say "the worst" happens, and I need to re-create the dataset and all of the reports. I can re-publish the original dataset. But then I cannot "re-publish" the exported reports, and link them to the original dataset. If I republish it, it seems to create its own, independent dataset on the Service -- even if it was originally linked to some other dataset. (And then, you can't change the dataset from which a report gets its data; though some weeks ago I voted and commented on this idea, to change that!)

 

@v-jiascu-msft -- oh, okay, that makes sense! I remember when the "Power BI Service connector" was announced; but I did not read that article you linked to. I had not considered how it might be used. "Enable everyone to use the same solid, vetted, published dataset to build their unique reports." And, share those reports on the Power BI Service...while having .PBIX files for those reports, as backups. Exactly what we want to do!

  1. I frequently update my shared dataset, by re-publishing an updated version having the same PBIX file name. I verified that any published "Power BI Service connector" reports still seem to work, as expected, even after overwriting the shared dataset with a new verison. So, that's good.
  2. The only small issue I see is: some of my "analyst"-type users who create and publish reports use Macs, so they cannot use Power BI Desktop. (Unless they use a Windows emulator, maybe.)
v-jiascu-msft
Employee
Employee

Hi @kevhav,

 

Maybe there is a workaround. We can use the connector "Power BI Service" to connect to the same dataset in the workspace. Then create reports and publish them to the Service. So users don't touch the other reports and don't have the possibility to delete the dataset. The most important thing is every reports has a backup in the Desktop files. There are still some restrictions. Please refer to: powerbi-desktop-report-lifecycle-datasets.

 

Best Regards!

Dale

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

@kevhav A good practice is to store the desktop file in the workspace files section. This stores the files in Sharepoint where you can version control the Desktop files. This would allow you to restore any report directly from there to the Service if something happens.


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