You can now Download your PowerBI Reports as a PBIX file
You’ve created that fantastic Data Model in PowerBI desktop, uploaded it to PowerBI Web for your team to admire. You’ve built some snazzy visualisations which everyone is now happy with. Fantastic. Job Done. Home early tonight.
If only, right?
Chances are, you spotted a problem / limitation with your original model – or thought of something else you wanted to include.
No problem – back to your PowerBI, update the model & republish.
Only to find…. You’ve lost all the work you did previously on the Web (all those super-snazzy gauge charts!), and have to re-do it all.
Or worse – you created the original file months ago, and now can’t find it. Go Straight to Jail, Do Not pass Go, Do Not collect £200
Anyone who’s done any work with PowerBI has probably cursed the inability to re-fetch the online Report to edit in the Desktop environment. Thankfully, this has finally been addressed.
Amanda Cofsky, Microsoft’s Program Manager for PowerBI, shared an update yesterday announcing that they’ve introduced the ability to download your online report as a PBIX report.
Many of you have asked for the ability to download your Power BI Desktop reports from the web service, and you now you can do just that!
This allows you to download the current live version of the report, make the required changes, and re-publish it to the web. This setup makes a lot more sense when thinking about the broader workflow of PowerBI.
Officially, the feature is still in ‘Preview’ mode, and there are a couple of limitations. Firstly, only reports which originated as a PowerBI Desktop file that you uploaded can be downloaded as a pbix file. Reports created online using online data / content packs cannot be downloaded for editing.
Secondly, only files uploaded since the feature was released can be downloaded – the option will be greyed out for existing reports. Of course, if you re-upload your Reports, and you can then download it in the future.
In both cases, Amanda has stated they’re looking to change this to allow all reports to be downloaded (hence it remaining a Preview feature for the time being)
To download, simply select your report, select FILE à Download a Copy
You can then open the file in PowerBI Desktop as normal.
In the future, it would be great to see this actually integrated within the Desktop Application itself, allowing it to ‘Pull’ reports down for changes, but this will be a huge improvement to many users and removes a major barrier to adoption.