HomeBusiness IntelligenceModel Management with OneDrive, Groups and SharePoint On-line

Model Management with OneDrive, Groups and SharePoint On-line

Power BI Governance, Version Control with OneDrive for Business, Microsoft Teams and SharePoint Online

Some of the vital facets of the software program improvement life cycle is to have management over totally different variations of an answer, particularly in a undertaking the place there’s multiple developer concerned within the implementation. Similar to whenever you usually create a undertaking in visible studio and also you commit the adjustments again to a supply management system like GitHub or Azure DevOps, it’s suggested to maintain the historical past of various variations of your Energy BI reviews. What we count on from a supply management answer is to maintain monitoring of all adjustments occurring within the supply code whereas growing a undertaking. So you’ll be able to simply roll again to a earlier state if you happen to wish to. 

The opposite profit of getting a supply management course of in place is when a number of builders are engaged on a single undertaking. Each single certainly one of them makes adjustments within the supply code then they commit all of the adjustments into the supply management server with out overwriting every others’ work. 

With Energy BI issues are a bit totally different although. Energy BI report recordsdata are PBIX recordsdata that are saved in binary format (nicely, PBIX is mainly a zipper file isn’t it?) which on the time of scripting this publish, there is no such thing as a official method to implement Energy BI supply management in any supply management options like GitHub or Azure DevOps (YET). 

Microsoft introduced a unbelievable function final week (6/05/2020) named “Deployment Pipelines” which does precisely what we’re after, however it’s at the moment a preview function which is barely obtainable solely to organisations with Energy BI Premium. So it’s out of the sport for almost all of us.

Having stated that, there’s nonetheless a method to preserve historical past of adjustments within the form of various variations of PBIX recordsdata. That is known as Model Management.

There are a number of methods you’ll be able to allow model management over your PBIX recordsdata whereas growing the report. Whatever the model management platform it is advisable to take into consideration having a number of environments and who can entry them for doing what.

Surroundings Accessible to Description
Improvement Builders Knowledge modellers and report writers entry this surroundings for improvement functions.  
Consumer Acceptance Check (UAT) Builders, SMEs, Technical Leads, Energy BI Admins After the event is completed the builders deploy the answer to the UAT surroundings. The answer will then be examined by SMEs (Topic Matter Consultants) to verify the enterprise necessities are met.
Pre-prod (Elective however advisable) Technical Leads, Energy BI Admins After the answer handed all UAT testing eventualities Technical Leads or Energy BI Admins will deploy it to Pre-prod for closing checks to verify all knowledge sources are accurately pointing to manufacturing knowledge sources and all reviews and dashboards are working as anticipated.  
Manufacturing Technical Leads, Energy BI Admins, Finish Customers After pre-prod checks accomplished Technical Leads or Energy BI Admins deploy the answer to the Manufacturing surroundings which is then obtainable to the top customers.

Model Management Choices

In case your organisation doesn’t have a Premium capability then “Deployment Pipelines” function isn’t obtainable to you. So it is advisable to give you an answer although. On this part I identify some Model Management choices obtainable to you

  • OneDrive for Enterprise
  • Microsoft Groups/SharePoint On-line

Model Management with One Drive for Enterprise

Within the absence of an official supply management mechanism, the inherent supply management functionality of “One Drive for Enterprise” can be utilized for model management. It might be good to create a undertaking listing, then 4 sub-directories, one for every surroundings. We then copy recordsdata to every undertaking listing in related surroundings listing. We then share the undertaking directories and their sub-folders with related folks.


  • It is strongly recommended to have separate Workspaces in Energy BI Service for every surroundings. After copying PBIX recordsdata to the following surroundings, the reviews have to be printed to the related Workspace surroundings in Energy BI Service.
  • Knowledge connections should to be switched to the proper knowledge supply when deploying from Dev to UAT.

Restoring an Older Model

Restoring an older model may be very easy. The consumer with the proper degree of entry must login to “OneDrive for Enterprise” on-line, navigate to the corresponding listing, click on on the ellipsis button on the appropriate aspect of the file then click on “View Historical past”.

A “Model Historical past” web page reveals a full historical past of adjustments within the file. Now you can click on on the ellipsis button of an older model then click on “Restore”.

Maintain the Experiences Up to date After Publishing to Energy BI Service

One of many coolest options of utilizing OneDrive for Enterprise along with Energy BI Service is that you just publish the report only one time, then Energy BI Service retains the reviews undated immediately from OneDrive for Enterprise. Which means that you actually don’t must republish the reviews a number of instances. You simply make the adjustments to the file and put it aside. By default, OneDrive updates recordsdata each hour, you’ll be able to choose to maintain the recordsdata updated from the dataset settings.


  • DO NOT publish the reviews to Energy BI Service from Energy BI Desktop. As a substitute, get the report immediately from Energy BI Service out of your OneDrive for Enterprise. In any other case you lose the automated file updates function in Energy BI Service.

Publishing the Experiences From Energy BI Service

  • In Energy BI Service navigate to a workspace
  • Click on “New” then click on “Dataset” (you too can click on “Get Knowledge” on the button left of the web page)
  • Click on “Information”
  • Click on “OneDrive for Enterprise”
  • Click on a Energy BI report file (PBIX)
  • Click on “Join”
Publish Power BI Reports from OneDrive for Business Directly from Power BI Service

Setting Auto Replace on the Dataset

After publishing the file to Energy BI Service navigate to Dataset settings and test that “OneDrive refresh” is enabled. That is enabled by default anyway, by no means the much less, it’s good to know the place to seek out it.

  • Click on the workspace
  • Hover over the specified dataset
  • Click on “Schedule refresh”
  • Broaden “OneDrive refresh” to see if automated refresh is enabled
Enable Automatic Dataset Refresh from OneDrive in Power BI Service


It is very important know that the OneDrive refresh is totally different from Schedule refresh. After we join to a Energy BI report file (PBIX) saved in OneDrive for Enterprise from Energy BI Service, at any time when we edit the PBIX file in Energy BI Desktop and save the adjustments again to our OneDrive for Enterprise, the linked dataset (knowledge mannequin) and report will probably be mechanically refreshed if we setup the OneDrive refresh. So, if we added a brand new measure to the mannequin, the change will probably be propagated to the linked dataset within the Service. That is DIFFERENT from the Schedule refresh setting or after we manually refresh the dataset from the Service. If we require the dataset to be refreshed mechanically from the linked knowledge supply(s) then we have to setup the Schedule refresh. On this case the dataset from the Service will get knowledge immediately from the underlying knowledge supply(s) which implies the information refresh course of has nothing to do with the PBIX file saved in our OneDrive for Enterprise.

Execs & Cons

Whereas this technique works okay in some eventualities, it’s good to find out about its limitations. So listed here are some execs and cons:

  • It’s simple to make use of
  • Straightforward to revive older variations
  • Leveraging dataset automated refresh from OneDrive
  • It’s not a correct supply management supporting code merge and branching methods
  • Commentary is NOT at the moment obtainable, so you can’t put feedback on every model to elucidate what have modified
  • The sharing technique is managed by the consumer who created the file not by the organisation
  • Lack of check-out/check-in
  • Lack of alerting

Model Management with Microsoft Groups/SharePoint On-line

You need to use both Microsoft Groups or SharePoint On-line for model management.


In the event you enabled Block basic workspace creation setting inside the Energy BI Admin Portal, you then already prevented producing basic workspaces by creating Microsoft Groups workforce. Due to this fact, we have to create a workforce in Microsoft Groups individually, create a contemporary Workspace in Energy BI then hyperlink our fashionable Workspace from Energy BI to the Groups workforce. You may test if the Block basic workspace creation setting is allows as under:

  • After logging into Energy BI Service with a Energy BI Admin account
  • Click on the Settings button from prime proper ()
  • Click on Admin Portal
  • Click on Teant Settings
  • Underneath Workspace settings part develop the Block basic workspace creation and see if that is enabled for the whole organisation
Block Classic Workspace Creation Setting in Power BI Admin Portal

Now let’s take a look at Groups. We now create a brand new Groups workforce per surroundings, add customers to the brand new workforce and add your PBIX recordsdata.

Using Microsoft Teams for Power BI Version Control

Ultimately you publish the reviews immediately from Energy BI Service.

Publish Power BI Reports from Teams Directly from Power BI Service

The brand new Groups workforce seems as a “Traditional Workspace” in Energy BI Service, you’ll be able to then improve the workspace to the brand new workspace expertise to leverage new options and improved safety. In the event you need to take action:

Upgrade Power BI Classic Workspace


Don’t forget to alter the information sources in Energy BI Desktop to level to the proper knowledge supply surroundings.

Sync together with your Native Drive

For extra comfort and keep away from downloading the recordsdata and importing after you make adjustments you’ll be able to merely synchronise your recordsdata so that you all the time have a neighborhood copy of it in your laborious drive. So you’ll be able to open the PBIX recordsdata immediately in Energy BI Desktop to make some adjustments and put it aside again to your laborious drive. Similar to OneDrive, your adjustments will probably be written again to Groups.

Sync Teams Files with Local Hard Drive


When utilizing Microsoft Groups you’ve gotten the power to check-out a file. To take action comply with the steps under:

  • Navigate to a desired Groups workforce
  • Click on “Information”
  • Hover-over the file and click on ellipsis button
  • Click on “Extra”
  • Click on “Take a look at”
Checkout Teams Files

The file will mark as checked out. So this file is now solely obtainable to you.

Teams Files Checked out

You and now open the file in Energy BI desktop to make the adjustments (by way of the synced listing) and save the file.

Now from Groups:

  • Hover-over the file
  • Click on ellipsis button -> Extra -> Examine in
  • To ascertain-in the adjustments it is advisable to put in some feedback concerning the adjustments which is admittedly useful
Checkin File Changes in Microsoft Teams

Restoring an Older Model

At present you can’t restore an older model of the file immediately from Microsoft Groups. Nevertheless, you are able to do so from SharePoint.

  • In Microsoft Groups click on “Open in SharePoint”
  • Over-over a desired file -> click on ellipsis button -> Model historical past
  • choose an older model of the file and click on “Restore”
Restoring an Older Version of a File in Microsoft Teams

Different SharePoint On-line Options

There are another options obtainable from SharePoint On-line. On this part we have a look at two of them that are extra related to model management and governance.

Alert me

You may setup alerts so you’re notified as quickly as a file is modified. In SharePoint On-line:

  • Hover-over a file
  • Click on “Alert me”
  • Setup an alert
Set Alters in SharePoint Online

Compliance particulars

If you have already got some safety and compliance insurance policies in place you’ll be able to apply a few of these to your recordsdata in SharePoint On-line. As an illustration, you’ll be able to apply “Retention” coverage to the recordsdata so if somebody unintentionally deletes a file you’ll be able to later recuperate that file from “Recycle bin” folder. Or you will have a coverage to completely stop file deletion. The recordsdata which are protected by retention insurance policies stay in SharePoint for a sure time period. As an illustration within the under instance the file retains for 7 years, after that point it have to be audited by an admin earlier than deletion. To set add retention labels to the recordsdata comply with the steps under:

  • Open the folder in SharePoint On-line
  • Hover-over a desired file
  • Click on ellipsis button -> Extra -> Compliance particulars
  • Click on “Label Standing” hyperlink
  • Apply a label from the dropdown listing
  • Click on Save
Apply Retention Labels to PBIX Files in SharePoint Online

Learn extra about Retention Insurance policies right here.

Execs & Cons

Whereas this technique works actually good for collaboration, however it at the moment has some limitations. Listed below are some execs and cons:

  • It’s simple to make use of
  • Commentary is offered on this technique
  • Whereas it’s built-in with SharePoint On-line sharing methods will be ruled by SharePoint
  • Examine-out/check-in performance
  • Establishing alerts
  • Making use of retention labels
  • Leveraging dataset automated refresh from OneDrive
  • It’s not a correct supply management supporting code merge and branching methods
  • Not all options immediately supported inside Microsoft Groups. It’s typically fairly complicated to change to SharePoint On-line to do some actions like restoring an older model


Within the above eventualities the method of selling recordsdata from dev listing to UAT and from there to Manufacturing will be automated utilizing a mix of instruments corresponding to Energy Automate and Approval apps obtainable in Workplace 365 which is out of scope of this publish. It wants a devoted weblog publish.

Have you ever ever used any of the above strategies? Are you utilizing one other strategy? Please share your ideas with us within the feedback part under.



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