Refreshing Published Power BI Reports

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Since June, I have begun working in a new position that involves less in the way of application development, and more data analytics and database development. The primary tool I’ll be using is Microsoft Power BI, along with SQL Server, Amazon Redshift, and CRM Analytics (formerly called Tableau) for use with Salesforce.

Power BI is an amazing tool, but like any new or unfamiliar tool, there is a learning curve to be overcome. Though there is plenty of free training to take, there’s nothing that will teach you as much as getting your hands on the tool – and then researching the problems you encounter along the way.

Recently, I had to update a number of reports with a fairly simple update – add a new column to the dataset, and then to the reports. I was able to do this and could view the updated reports with no problem.

One of my customers looked at the report and said that the new column was not there. I assumed that the report had simply been cached in the browser, and needed to be refreshed. Not so. After digging around a bit, I found that I was looking directly at the report I’d updated, and the user was looking at the report through a published app. As it turns out, updates to the report and dataset do not show up in the app until the app is updated.

Once the app has been updated, any changes made will appear, though there may be a delay if the changes were major (such as adding a large quantity of data to a dataset).

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