You can install Tableau Server in a disconnected environment that has no outside network access of any kind. Such disconnected environments, commonly referred to as air-gapped, are used when high security is needed to prevent data breaches or to guard against hacking. Air-gapped environments have no internet access, no outside network access, no outside wireless access, etc. The only means of getting software and data into or out of an air-gapped environment is by using removable media such as USB sticks or writable optical CDs or DVDs.

Installing Tableau Server in an air-gapped environment is an advanced task for IT administrators who are familiar with the security considerations, best practices, and pitfalls of installing software in air-gapped environments.

The following Tableau Server features will be unavailable or will have reduced functionality in an air-gapped environment:

  • MapsTableau Server uses externally hosted map data by default. Beginning with version 2020.4.0, you can configure Tableau Server to use offline maps. With earlier versions of Tableau, maps are unavailable in an air-gapped environment unless you also install a map server in your air-gapped environment. For more details, see Displaying Maps in an Air-Gapped Environment.

  • LicensingTableau Server needs to connect to the internet in order to activate product keys. However, you can manually activate the product keys.

  • External data – Any data located outside your air-gapped environment is unavailable.

Prerequisites

In order to install Tableau Server in an air-gapped environment, you’ll need the following:

  • Trusted computer with limited access to the internet that you can use to download the installation packages and resources required by Tableau Server. A trusted computer has been scanned and cleared of any viruses and malware.

  • Trusted removable media that you can use to transfer the downloaded software to your air-gapped environment. Trusted removable media is removable media that is new and previously unused and comes from a reputable or known source. Trusted removable media has been scanned and verified that it does not contain any viruses or malware.

  • Air-gapped environment with computers and storage that meet the requirements for installing Tableau Server.

Installing Tableau Server on an Air-Gapped Computer Running Linux

The easiest way to install Tableau Server on a computer in an air-gapped environment is to do so before the computer is placed into the air-gapped environment. If that’s not possible you’ll need to download the required packages to a trusted computer outside the air gap:

  1. On a trusted computer outside the air gap with internet access, download the Tableau Server installation package.

  2. Extract the list of dependent packages:

    On Ubuntu:

    dpkg --field <debfile> Depends (where <debfile> is the name of the .deb package you downloaded from Tableau).

    Example command:

    dpkg --field tableau-server-linux-1.deb Depends

    Example output:

    ca-certificates, fontconfig, net-tools, bash-completion, ca-certificates-java, freeglut3, libegl1-mesa, libfreetype6, libgssapi-krb5-2, libxcomposite1, libxrender1, libxslt1.1, lsb-core

    On RHEL and RHEL-like Linux distributions:

    yum -q deplist <RPM file> (where <RPM file> is the .rpm package you downloaded from Tableau).

    Example command:

    yum -q deplist tableau-server-linux_1.rpm

    Example output:
    package: tableau-server-10400.17.0703.1600.x86_64 10400-17.0703.1600
    dependency: /bin/sh
    provider: bash.x86_64 4.2.46-21.el7_3
    dependency: bash-completion
    provider: bash-completion.noarch 1:2.1-6.el7
    dependency: ca-certificates
    provider: ca-certificates.noarch 2017.2.14-70.1.el7_3
    dependency: fontconfig
    provider: fontconfig.x86_64 2.10.95-10.el7
    provider: fontconfig.i686 2.10.95-10.el7
    dependency: freeglut
    provider: freeglut.x86_64 2.8.1-3.el7
    provider: freeglut.i686 2.8.1-3.el7
    dependency: freetype
    provider: freetype.x86_64 2.4.11-12.el7
    provider: freetype.i686 2.4.11-12.el7
    dependency: krb5-libs
    provider: krb5-libs.x86_64 1.14.1-27.el7_3
    provider: krb5-libs.i686 1.14.1-27.el7_3
    dependency: libXcomposite
    provider: libXcomposite.x86_64 0.4.4-4.1.el7
    provider: libXcomposite.i686 0.4.4-4.1.el7
    dependency: libXrender
    provider: libXrender.x86_64 0.9.8-2.1.el7
    provider: libXrender.i686 0.9.8-2.1.el7
    dependency: libxslt
    provider: libxslt.x86_64 1.1.28-5.el7
    provider: libxslt.i686 1.1.28-5.el7
    dependency: mesa-libEGL
    provider: mesa-libEGL.x86_64 11.2.2-2.20160614.el7
    provider: mesa-libEGL.i686 11.2.2-2.20160614.el7
    dependency: net-tools
    provider: net-tools.x86_64 2.0-0.17.20131004git.el7
    dependency: redhat-lsb-core
    provider: redhat-lsb-core.x86_64 4.1-27.el7.centos.1
    provider: redhat-lsb-core.i686 4.1-27.el7.centos.1
                        
  3. Download each of the dependent packages:

    On Ubuntu:

    apt-get download <package1> <package2>…

    On RHEL and RHEL-like Linux distributions:

    yumdownloader <package1> <package2>…

  4. Transfer the packages to your removable media.

  5. On your air-gapped computer, insert the removable media containing the Tableau Server installation package and dependent packages, and then run the installer.

  6. After installation is complete, you can activate the Tableau Server product keys. For more information, see Activating Tableau Server in an Air-Gapped Environment.

Activating Tableau Server in an Air-Gapped Environment

Because an air-gapped computer is not connected to the internet, you’ll need to perform the Tableau Server activation process manually.

Step 1. Log in to Tableau Services Manager

  • To log in to Tableau Services Manager (TSM), run the following command:

    tsm login -u <username>

What if I can't log in?

The account that you use to configure the rest of the installation must be a member of the tsmadmin group that was created during initialization. To view the user accounts in the tsmadmin group, run the following command:

grep tsmadmin /etc/group

If the user account is not in the group, run the following command to add the user to the tsmadmin group:

sudo usermod -G tsmadmin -a <username>

After you have added the user to the tsmadmin group, run the tsm login command.

Step 2. Transcribe data from your air-gapped system into an activation request template.

  1. On your Tableau Server in the air-gapped environment, use TSM to obtain the offline activation file. At a command prompt:

    tsm licenses get-offline-activation-file -k <product-key> -o <target-directory>

    The <target-directory> must exist. You can obtain your product key in the Tableau Customer Portal(Link opens in a new window).

  2. If you can copy the offline request file (TableauOfflineActivationRequest.tlq) from the target directory to a computer that has Internet access, skip to step 5.

    Otherwise, if you cannot copy the file to another computer due to security reasons, continue with step 3.

  3. Download and open the server_linux.tlq(Link opens in a new window) file in an XML text editor such as Notepad++ on a trusted computer that has Internet access.

    You'll need to write down the values listed in step 4 from the air-gapped computer in order to copy them to the offline template (server_linux.tlq).

  4. Update the following XML elements in the appropriate server_linux.tlq file with the values for the same elements listed below from the air-gapped computer.

    All the Machine / Hash values in the .tlq files are Hex values. The only valid characters are 0 - 9 and A - F. Use all caps for any letters.

    Do not add any additional spaces or carriage controls and only modify the “X” characters found in the template. The format of the file must not change.

    Line 2 - <EntitlementId>

    Line 5 - <ClientVersion>

    Line 5 - <RevisionType> (This value is present in the server_linux.tlq file.)

    Line 5 - <MachineIdentifier> (This value is present in the server_linux.tlq file.)

    Line 11 - <Value> (If the value is not present, remove the "X" place holder, leaving <Value></Value>.)

    Line 12 - <Value> (If the value is not present, remove the "X" place holder, leaving <Value></Value>.)

    Line 13 - <Value> (If the value is not present, remove the "X" place holder, leaving <Value></Value>.)

    Line 15 - <SequenceNumber>

    Line 61 - <Hash>

  5. Upload the offline request file (TableauOfflineActivationRequest.tlq) or edited template file (server_linux.tlq) to the Tableau Offline Activation(Link opens in a new window) website.

  6. The website should say The activation was successful. Please click here to download your activation file.

    Download the activation.tlf file and transfer it to your Tableau Server.

Step 3. Initialize or activate your license

  1. Move the activation file (activation.tlf) to your air-gapped computer using trusted removable media.

  2. Run the following command:

    tsm licenses activate -f <path-and-activation-file>

    You should see the message "Activation successful.", which indicates that Tableau Server is activated.

Displaying Maps in an Air-Gapped Environment

In an air-gapped environment, maps in Tableau Server will be unavailable by default due to the lack of internet access. If you have Tableau Server 2020.4.0 or later, you can configure Tableau to use local maps. If you have an earlier version, you can use one of several workarounds to display maps in an offline environment.

Configuring Tableau Server to use offline maps (version 2020.4.0 and later):

  1. Open a command prompt as administrator.

  2. Configure Tableau to use locally available offline maps:

    tsm configuration set -k vizqlserver.force_maps_to_offline -v true
    tsm pending-changes apply

Workarounds to display maps in Tableau Server in an offline environment (versions earlier than 2020.4.0):

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