Update Power BI Dataset (Semantic Model) More Than 8 Times a Day (Without Premium)

It’s not possible to refresh a dataset more than 8 times a day (shared capacity). However, it is possible to have a report with data refreshed, for example, 24 times a day. How?

If you really need the refreshes for a little maintenance cost (versus the $$$ cost of Premium capacity), then I have a trick for you.

It’s not forbidden to have 3 copies of a dataset with different refresh schedules and to call HTTP POST https://api.powerbi.com/v1.0/myorg/groups/{groupId}/reports/{reportId}/Rebind to rebind the report to a different dataset 3 times a day.

For example,
➡️ from 00:00 to 08:00 Report 1 is linked to Dataset 1
➡️ from 08:00 to 16:00 Report 1 is linked to Dataset 2
➡️ from 16:00 to 00:00 Report 1 is linked to Dataset 3
Every dataset refreshed hourly, 8 times a day within a corresponding 8 hours range.

You can manage the rest of the work (initial dataset replication and refresh scheduling) either manually or better using Power BI REST API.

Important Note

I’ve never needed this workaround. Even when customers initially said they needed more than 8 refreshes a day, they didn’t. I recommend avoiding refreshing your reports more often than is really needed for making business decisions and taking actions based on the report.

Make sure there will be an employee (or multiple employees) in the company who are constantly watching the report, making business decisions based on what has changed in the data during the last X hours / Y minutes (how often the report is being refreshed), and turning these decisions into immediate actions. Often, when businesses say “we need the report to be refreshed in real-time / every X hours / every Y minutes,” in reality, daily refreshes or 8 refreshes a day are more than enough.

Ensure such business decisions make sense. Verify that “what has changed in the data during the last X hours / Y minutes” is not noise and random deviations but meaningful changes that can be used to make useful business decisions.

Once again, make sure that frequent refreshes make sense from a business point of view. Then verify if there is data to support such frequent refreshes. I’ve seen attempts to refresh a Power BI dataset hourly while data was being imported from external systems into the source database daily.

Sometimes it’s okay for the business to have 8 updates during 8 business hours (hourly) instead of 8 refreshes during a 24-hour day (every 3 hours).

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