Azure Data Factory Publishing Error

I am using Azure Data Factory v2. It is bound to an Azure DevOps GIT repository. I made some changes in my branch, including deleting some obsolete items. Then I merged my changes back to the ‘master’ branch.

Now, I’m trying to publish my changes from the ‘master’ branch to the Azure Data Factory. When I do, it says it’s deployed 33 of 33 changes, and then it fails, saying:

“Publishing Error

The document cannot be deleted since it is referenced by <some Pipeline>.”

I searched high and low looking for some evidence that the offending Pipeline existed anywhere in the GIT repo. It did not.

Then, I discovered that you can change from the Azure DevOps GIT version of the Data Factory to the actual Data Factory version by selecting the latter from the dropdown in the top left corner of the Data Factory editor:

This saved the day. I was able to locate and delete the offending Pipeline(s) directly from the actual Data Factory. Then, when I switched back to Azure DevOps GIT mode, it allowed me to publish the changes from the ‘master’ branch. Woohoo!

4 thoughts on “Azure Data Factory Publishing Error

  1. We had the same issue and we found that in de Data factory environment there where still pipelines we created before switching to CI/CD and these where causing the issue. After deleting these pipelines is was indeed solved.

  2. I have the same problem but your solution does not work in my case. I want to delete an Azure Databricks Linked Service. It says it is referenced by pipeline X. I can see this pipeline when I switch to the Data Factory mode (= not Git linked). I delete the unnecessary pipeline, but I can not save the changes (no Save all button visible) and I can not Publish either (Publish button visible but it says “you have git enabled, publish from Data Factory mode is not possible”). So my only option in this mode is to Discard all changes. After which I am back to square one.

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