PBIT vs PBIX which is the best Power BI File Format

In the realm of data analysis and visualization, Microsoft Power BI is a dominant force, offering powerful tools for transforming data into actionable insights. Two common file formats used in Power BI are PBIT and PBIX. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the differences between PBIT and PBIX, provide a comparison table, delve into their respective use cases, offer external links for further exploration, and answer frequently asked questions to help you make informed decisions when working with Power BI.

PBIT vs PBIX: What’s the Difference?

PBIT (Power BI Template):

  • PBIT is a template file format used in Power BI.
  • It contains the data model, queries, and report layout but excludes the actual data.
  • PBIT files are smaller in size compared to PBIX files, making them easier to share and store.
  • PBIT files are useful for distributing report templates without exposing sensitive data.

PBIX (Power BI Report):

  • PBIX is the standard report file format used in Power BI.
  • It includes the data model, queries, report layout, and actual data.
  • PBIX files are larger in size due to the inclusion of data, making them suitable for standalone reports.
  • PBIX files are used for creating and sharing complete reports with interactive visuals and data analysis.

Comparison Table of PBIT vs PBIX

File Format Template Report
Contents Data model, queries, layout Data model, queries, layout, data
Size Smaller Larger
Use Case Template distribution Complete report creation and sharing

Use Cases of PBIT and PBIX:

PBIT Use Cases:

  1. Report Templates: PBIT files are ideal for creating report templates that can be reused across different datasets. Users can design the data model, queries, and report layout in a PBIT file and distribute it to others for use with their own data.
  2. Sensitive Data Protection: PBIT files allow users to share report templates without exposing sensitive data. By excluding actual data from the file, users can distribute templates while preserving data privacy and security.
  3. Standardized Reporting: Organizations can use PBIT files to standardize reporting across departments or teams. By creating standardized report templates, organizations ensure consistency in reporting practices and facilitate collaboration.

PBIX Use Cases:

  1. Complete Reports: PBIX files are used for creating complete reports that include both the report structure and the actual data. Users can build interactive visualizations, perform data analysis, and share insights with stakeholders using PBIX files.
  2. Data Exploration: PBIX files enable users to explore data interactively through visualizations, filters, and slicers. Users can analyze trends, identify patterns, and gain insights into their data by working with PBIX files.
  3. Data Sharing: PBIX files facilitate data sharing by encapsulating both the report structure and the data. Users can share PBIX files with colleagues or stakeholders, allowing them to interact with the data and explore insights on their own.

Advantages of PBIT and PBIX Files:

Advantages of PBIT:

  1. Smaller file size, making it easier to share and store.
  2. Protection of sensitive data by excluding actual data.
  3. Standardization of reporting practices across departments.

Advantages of PBIX:

  1. Inclusion of actual data for comprehensive analysis and visualization.
  2. Interactivity and flexibility in exploring data through visualizations.
  3. Facilitation of data sharing with colleagues and stakeholders.

Practical Examples:

  1. Sales Performance Dashboard:
    • PBIT: Distribute a PBIT file containing the template for a sales performance dashboard across regional sales teams.
    • PBIX: Share a PBIX file containing the complete sales performance dashboard with senior management for in-depth analysis.
  2. Inventory Management System:
    • PBIT: Share a PBIT file with inventory management templates across warehouse locations for standardized reporting.
    • PBIX: Use a PBIX file to explore real-time inventory data, track stock levels, and identify trends for efficient inventory management.
  3. Customer Segmentation Analysis:
    • PBIT: Distribute a PBIT file containing templates for customer segmentation analysis across marketing teams.
    • PBIX: Use a PBIX file to analyze customer data, create interactive visualizations, and identify target customer segments for marketing campaigns.

External Links:


Q: Can I convert a PBIT file to a PBIX file?

A: Yes, you can convert a PBIT file to a PBIX file by connecting it to a data source and refreshing the data. Once the data is loaded into the PBIT file, you can save it as a PBIX file.

Q: Can I use PBIX files as templates?

A: Yes, you can use PBIX files as templates by removing the data and saving them as PBIT files. This allows you to create reusable report templates while preserving the report structure and layout.

Q: How do I share PBIT and PBIX files with others?

A: You can share PBIT and PBIX files with others by sending them the file directly or by publishing the report to the Power BI service and sharing it with specific users or groups.

Q: Are there any limitations to using PBIT files?

A: PBIT files do not include the actual data, so they cannot be used for data analysis or visualization. They are limited to distributing report templates and must be connected to a data source to be functional.


In summary, understanding the differences between PBIT and PBIX files is essential for effectively leveraging the power of Microsoft Power BI. While PBIT files are ideal for distributing report templates and protecting sensitive data, PBIX files are used for creating complete reports with interactive visualizations and data analysis. By choosing the right file format for your specific use case, you can maximize the value of Power BI and drive informed decision-making within your organization.