Troubleshoot Subscriptions

"The view snapshot in this email could not be properly rendered."

If you receive a subscription with this error message, there could be several reasons:

  • Missing credentials: Some views are published with embedded credentials. You may receive the above error if the embedded credentials are now out-of-date, or if the view was republished without the embedded credentials.

  • Database temporarily down: If the view has a live database connection and the database was temporarily down when the subscription was being generated, you might receive the above error.

  • Background process timeout: By default, the background process that handles subscriptions has a timeout value of 30 minutes per view for the rendering of a view. If rendering a view goes beyond this time limit, the next view in the workbook results in a failed job due to the timeout. In the majority of cases, this default is plenty of time. However, if the background process is handling an extraordinarily large and complex dashboard, that may not be enough time. You can check the Background Tasks for Non Extracts admin view to see if that's the case. To increase the timeout threshold, use the tsm configuration set subscriptions.timeout command.

Can't see images in email

For images of content to display in a subscription email, users subscribed to views, in addition to View permissions, must also have Download Image/PDF permissions. For more information, see Permissions.

Can't subscribe

If you can see a view on Tableau Server and it has a subscription icon () in the upper right corner, you can subscribe to it.

To subscribe to a view, Tableau Server needs to be correctly configured (described in Manage Subscriptions(Link opens in a new window)) and the view you're subscribing to must either have embedded credentials for its data source or not rely on credentials at all. Examples of the latter include a workbook that connects to an extract that isn't being refreshed, or a workbook whose data is in a file that was included with the workbook at the time of publishing. Embedding credentials is a step that happens in Tableau Desktop (see the Tableau Help(Link opens in a new window) for details).

No subscription icon

It's possible to see a view but be unable to subscribe to it. This can happen for several reasons:

  • No subscriptions have been scheduled: If no subscriptions have been scheduled or all subscription schedules are disabled, the subscription icon will not appear. To set a schedule for subscriptions, see Create or Modify a Schedule(Link opens in a new window).
  • The view uses a live database connection: Views with live database connections, where you’re prompted for your database credentials when you first click the view, aren't available for subscription. A subscription includes a view (or workbook), data, and a schedule. To deliver the data required for the view, Tableau Server either needs embedded database credentials or data that doesn't require credentials. Where live database connections are concerned, Tableau Server doesn't have the credentials, only the individual users do. This is why you can only subscribe to views that either don’t require credentials or have them embedded.
  • Tableau Server is configured for trusted authentication: You may also be able to see a view but be unable to subscribe to it (no subscription icon) if Tableau Server is configured for trusted authentication. See Ensure Access to Subscriptions(Link opens in a new window) for more information.

Receiving invalid or "broken" subscriptions

If you configured subscriptions on test or development instances of Tableau Server in addition to your in-production instance, disable subscriptions on your non-production instances. Keeping subscriptions enabled on all instances can result in your users receiving subscriptions that appear to be valid, but that don't work, or receiving subscriptions even though they've unsubscribed from the view or workbook.

Missing attachments

You can add a PDF attachment to your subscription if your administrator has it enabled. If the PDF attachment is missing from your subscription, it might be because the size of the PDF exceeds either the email server size limit or the maximum size limit set by server administrators. In Tableau Server, the maximum size limit for PDF attachments to subscriptions can be adjusted through the tsm configuration option subscriptions.max_attachment_size_megabytes. For more information, see Configure Server Event Notification and Set Up a Site for Subscriptions.

Starting in Tableau 2024.1, you can send emails with your own sending server, which will allow you to send attachments with a maximum email size of 10 MB.

To enable this feature, navigate to site settings, find the Customise Email Notifications section and tick the box next to Use your SMTP server.

Note: If you're using your own sending server, Tableau will attempt to send a subscription email with a subset of the attachment that is under the 10 MB limit, but this is not guaranteed. If Tableau can't send the attachment, you'll see a message letting you know that the attachment is too large to send.

Suspended Subscriptions

By default, a subscription is suspended after 5 consecutive subscription failures. To change the threshold number of subscription failures that can occur before they are suspended, use the tsm configuration set option, backgrounder.subscription_failure_threshold_for_run_prevention. This sets the threshold for the number of consecutive failed subscriptions necessary before suspending the subscription. This is a server-wide setting.

Only Server administrators can configure the threshold number of subscription failures before a subscription is suspended. For information on setting this threshold, see Set up a Server for Subscriptions.

By default, administrators are not emailed when a subscription is suspended, but can opt-in to suspension emails per site through My Account Settings.

Resume suspended subscriptions

Administrators and subscription owners can resume subscriptions in several ways:

  • from My Subscription tab in Content Settings

  • from the Subscriptions tab per workbook

  • from the Subscriptions tab under Tasks (Server Admins only)

When a subscription is resumed, the alert failing count goes back to zero. The next evaluation of the subscription will occur at the next scheduled evaluation time.

Can't set subscription frequency to "When Data Refreshes"

You can set subscriptions to run when an extract refreshes if the workbook uses a connection to a published extract. When creating or modifying a subscription, you might not see a Frequency option if the workbook uses:

  • More than one extract refresh
  • A live data connection

Subscriptions not arriving ("Error sending email. Can't send command to SMTP host.")

You may see the above error in Windows Event Viewer if subscriptions aren't arriving and your SMTP server is using encrypted (TLS) sessions. To send subscriptions to an SMTP server that is configured with TLS, you must configure secure SMTP on Tableau Server. See Configure SMTP Setup. (If you're experiencing this error, note that Tableau Server will still indicate that subscriptions are being sent in the Background Tasks for Non Extracts(Link opens in a new window) admin view.)

Missing data quality warnings

Data quality warnings are included in subscription emails when:

  • Tableau Server or Tableau Cloud is licensed with Data Management. For more information, see About Data Management.
  • Tableau Catalogue is enabled. For more information, see Enable Tableau Catalogue.
  • In site settings, the tick box under Data Quality Warnings in Subscriptions is selected.
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