Dashboard Auto Refresh once for all users

  • 3 December 2019
  • 8 replies

Userlevel 4


We are using internally a dashboard for monitoring real time performance of our countries. I have basically 60 users looking at this dashboard everyday with an auto refresh setup at 15 minutes. The issue here is that auto refresh forces the dashboard to update (bypassing any caching policy) and therefore, we are sending a huge amount of queries to BigQuery resulting in a nice scanning bill!

I would ilke to try to find a solution to deactivate the auto refresh on this dashboard and trigger the update every 15minutes only once so that all users see the most recent version of the data without reloading their browsers. What would be the approach to do so? Is there a method with the Looker API to trigger a dashboard refresh or something like this?

Thanks for your help,


8 replies

Userlevel 3

Piggy backing on this. I have a monitoring dashboard that updates every minute. I realized it’s slamming our database after I shared it with other people and running the same queries 10-20x per minute.

Userlevel 2

Have you tried using datagroups? These can use a cron schedule in the admin settings (to check hourly, every 15 minutes, etc). These can check a sql statement based on the cron schedule every x minutes to see if cache should be cleared. So, if there is new data, you can force looker to clear cache, otherwise let queries cache. 

we used datagroups which is tie directly to our ETL job completion. 


Userlevel 3

I think this works! I consider myself a savvy Looker developer, but had no idea that datagroups existed. Thanks @n_davis and @Hramos !

Hello everyone,

I see that you could set that refresh every 15-20 minutes (and even every hour) but, could you set it to be done once a day?.

@sc0tt @antho @n_davis @Hramos 

Thanks for all.

Userlevel 4


At the end, dashboard auto refresh should be applied with great cautious because it does not listen to any caching policy

Autorefresh never pulls results from the Looker cache; it always pulls the data from the database.

So we end up almost not using it except in some particular occasions when true real time is needed

Userlevel 4

@M.Prieto  For daily update, I would not rely on auto refresh either because of this:

For example, if it is 8:33 a.m. when you set a daily refresh, the dashboard will refresh the next day at 8:33 a.m. and then refresh again each following day at 8:33 a.m. However, if one day you enter edit mode at 9:02 a.m. and exit edit mode at 9:45 a.m., from then on, the daily refresh will occur at 9:45 a.m, beginning the following day.

it makes the daily time of refresh quite approximative. For this kind of thing, I would just setup a datagroup with a SQL trigger that updates once a day at the best time depending on your ETL process.


Userlevel 6

you cant force the page to refresh though, you would have to have to have some kind of browser plugin on the monitoring screen