Tableau Prep on the Web
Tableau Prep now supports web authoring for flows. Starting in version 2020.4.1, you can create flows to clean and prepare your data using either Tableau Prep Builder, Tableau Server, or Tableau Online. You can also manually run flows on the web and the Data Management Add-on is not required.
While most of the same Tableau Prep Builder functionality is also supported on the web, there are a few differences when creating and working with your flows.
Important: To create and edit flows on the web you must have a Creator license. However, the Data Management add-on is only required if you want to run your flows on a schedule using Tableau Prep Conductor.
Installation and Deployment
To enable users to create and edit flows on the web, configure the following settings on your server:
Web Authoring: Controls whether users can create and edit flows on Tableau Server or Tableau Online. For more information, see Create and Interact with Flows on the Web(Link opens in a new window) in the Tableau Server help.
Run Now: Controls whether users or only administrators can run flows manually using the Run Now option.
Tableau Prep Conductor: If the Data Management Add-on is enabled, enable this option to let users schedule and track flows in Tableau Server and Tableau Online.
Autosave: Enabled by default, this feature automatically saves a user's flow work every few seconds.
While not recommended, administrators can disable autosave on a site using the Tableau Server REST API method "Update Site" and
flowAutoSaveEnabledsetting. For more information, see Tableau Server REST API Site Methods: Update Site(Link opens in a new window). For more information about autosave on the web, see Autosave and working with drafts.
For more information about configuring site settings, see Site Settings Reference(Link opens in a new window) in the Tableau Server help.
On Tableau Server, administrators can fine-tune the configuration of the Tableau Prep Flow Authoring processes. For more information, see Tableau Prep Flow Authoring.
To maintain performance while working with flows on the web, limits are applied to the amount of data you can include in a flow.
The following limits apply:
- When connecting to files, the maximum file size is 1GB.
- The data sampling option to include all data is not available. The default sample data limit is 1 million rows.
- The maximum number of rows that a user can select when using large data sets is configured by the administrator. As a user, you can select the number of rows up to that limit. For more information, see tsm configuration set Options(Link opens in a new window) in the Tableau Server help.
- In Tableau Online, the number of flow runs you can perform in a day is also limited by the site administrator. For more information, see Tableau Online Site Capacity(Link opens in a new window) in the Tableau Online help.
When you create and edit flows on the web you may notice a few differences in navigation and the availability of certain features. While most features are available across all platforms, some features are limited or not yet supported in Tableau Server or Tableau Online. The following table identifies features where differences might apply.
|Feature||Tableau Prep Builder||Tableau Server||Tableau Online|
|Connect to Data*|
|Build and Organize your Flow|
|Set your data sample size**|
|Union files and database tables in the Input step***|
|Clean and Shape Data|
|Aggregate, Join, or Union Data|
|Use R and Python scripts in your flow ****|
|Create reusable flow steps (version 2019.3.2 and later)|
|Automatically save your flows on the web||Not Applicable|
|Automatic file recovery||Not Applicable||Not Applicable|
|View flow output in Tableau Desktop|
|Create an extract to a file|
|Create a published data source|
|Save flow output data to external databases|
* Some connectors may not be supported on the web. Open the Connect pane on your server to see supported connectors.
** In Tableau Server and Tableau Online, the data sample size is subject to limits set by your administrator.
*** Input unions can't be edited or created in Tableau Server or Tableau Online. Only in Tableau Prep Builder.
**** Script steps can't be added when creating or editing a flow in Tableau Online. This is currently supported only in Tableau Prep builder and Tableau Server.
When you create or edit flows on the server, your work is automatically saved as a draft every few seconds so that in the event of a crash, or when closing a tab by accident, you don't lose your work.
Drafts are saved to the server and project you are signed into. You can't save or publish a draft to another server, but you can save the flow to another project on that server using the File > Publish As menu option.
Draft content can only be seen by you until you publish it. If you publish changes and need to revert them, you can use the Revision History dialog to view and revert to a previously published version. For more information about saving flows on the web, see Automatically save your flows on the web .
Whether you are publishing flows from Tableau Prep Builder to Tableau Server or Tableau Online or publishing a new or edited flow on the web, you have the option to embed credentials for database connections. Embedding your credentials enables flows that include database connections to run seamlessly on the server without requiring manual intervention.
Note: Embedding credentials only applies to running published flows on your server. You will still manually need to enter your credentials when editing a flow connected to a database in either Tableau Prep Builder or on the web.
When creating or editing flows on the web, you must first publish a flow before you can run it to generate your flow output for your data analysis. During publish, you can choose to embed your credentials for your database connections. By default credentials are not embedded.
You can also change your credential option from the top menu under File > Connection Credentials. For more information, see Publish a flow in web authoring.