Is it possible to create a Print Composer; then later, after altering the map that it is based on, go back to that print composer and have it show the altered map? In other words, I want to retain the view extent, and the text labels, etc., that I have created—but have the map image be updated with the changes I’ve made since I created it. Thanks TVZ

1 Answer 1


Yes of course!

In the Print Composer of QGIS, there is the option to have the map image displayed in 3 ways:

  • as a blank rectangle with no updates until it is output
  • as a manual refresh based on cache
  • as a rendered refresh

For your case I think you just need check the dialog is not on a rectangle and to be pressing the update button as required.

So click on the map area in Print Composer, that should activate the dialog on the right hand side. Select the tab for Item Properties and the button for Update Preview will be there.

enter image description here

  • Really nice and clear explanation! Feb 11, 2013 at 22:06
  • Note that there are also a set of vertical tabs, which depend on the type of item which has been selected (in this case 'Extents', 'Grid', etc). These reveal more functionality.
    – Willy
    Feb 12, 2013 at 1:23

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