How to consume information in tableau server?

Consuming information in tableau server

As your tableau deployment matures, you may see hundreds of reports and data sources being published, updated, and consumed. Promoting access to information and encouraging collaboration is of primary concern, and that is the predominant  value provided by business information system. Tableau server provides tools for finding information, commenting on reports, sharing discoveries, or customizing views. Tableau server even allows information consumers to create completely new visualizations from within tableau server.


Not only tableau’s security architecture provides an initial level of categorization, but also allows information consumers to customize access further through tagging, marking favorites, and even altering existing workbooks without the need for a desktop license.


Tags are keywords you can create for workbooks, views, and data sources to help you find, filter, and categorize content on Tableau Server. Authors can add tags to content when they publish the content. After content is published to a Tableau server, you can add tags to any workbook, view, or data source that you are allowed to access, and you can delete any tags that you have already added.

However, users having only interactor access can also tag projects, workbooks, views, and data sources. While interactor users can add and remove their own tags, administrators and publishers have the visibility of all tags applied to workbooks. Tags are applied from the content menus for projects, workbooks, views, or data sources. To apply the tag, select the tag menu option at the top, and either select  an existing tag or enter a new tag.

Add Tags

You can add tags to any view or data source on the server that you have permission to access. Tags are not case sensitive and are converted to lower case when you add them.

  • To add tags to a single view

In the Tags area below the view, click Edit Tags, and then enter one or more words in the text box. Click Save when you are done.

  • To add tags to multiple views

If you have an Interactor-level access, you can also add tags to multiple views at once.

  1. Navigate to a list of views or workbooks.
  2. Select the views you want to tag, and then select Actions > Tag.

    Enter one or more words in the text box, and then click Save Tags when you are done.

  • To add tags to a data source

In the Data Source page, select a data source, and then select Actions > Tag. Enter one or more words in the text box. Click Save Tags when you are done.

Removing tags

Figure 10.14 shows a tag being applied from within the content, thumbnail view for workbooks.

The thumbnail workbook views displayed  in figure 10.14 will have the version 8 tag applied to them. This tag will provide a means for filtering based on the type of tag. If no existing tag is appropriate, use the add option at the bottom of the tag menu and create a new tag. Note that the new tag won’t appear in the tag’s menu until the view is refreshed in your browser.

If you want to delete a tag associated with a project, workbook, view, or data source, navigate to the server view containing the item from which you wish to delete the tag. Scroll to the bottom of the page below the comments area. You will see the tags associated with the item there as displayed in figure 10.15.

The version tag, will be deleted in figure 10.15 by clicking on the X in the tag area. Note that administrators and publishers may remove any tag, but interactor users can only remove tags created by them.


Figure 10.14 Tagging workbooks


Figure 10.15 Deleting the tag


To make it easy to find your most-used views or workbooks, you can mark them as favorites.

Next to every workbook or view listing in tableau server is a star icon that allows your users to create a personal favorites list. If the icon is colored yellow, then it means the item has been in the list. Whereas gray coloured items are not. Clicking on the star will add it to the favorites list. When clicked for the second  time, it toggles off  from the list. The favorites list is a bookmarking mechanism that provides fast access to your most frequently used items. Refer to figure 10.5, presented earlier in the “creating a favorite” section of this post to review the details regarding how favorites are added.

Mark a view or workbook as a favorite

  • Select the favorite star next to the content.

    Alternatively, from the list view, create a favorite by clicking the star next to the view or workbook you want to store as a favorite.

    The view or workbook is added to your Favorites menu.

Remove an item from Favorites

  • Click the star that you used to mark the favorite.

Search Favorites

  • Click the Favorites menu in the upper-right corner of the page.

    On the Favorites menu, indicates a view and indicates a workbook. If you have a large number of favorites, scroll to see all of them. You can search for specific favorites using the search box at the top of the Favorites menu.

Sharing comments and views

Now you can easily share your published views with others. Click Share in a workbook or view to create links that you can embed in a blog or webpage or email to a friend or co-worker.

Comments can be applied in any server view if the user has the proper permission. Assuming the comment save option has not been disabled through an embedded view. Comments are found at the bottom of the view in server, giving users the opportunity to share ideas and ask questions.

Views can be shared with anyone via the share link found at the top of the page. If the view is embedded, you will find the share link at the bottom of the page. Figure 10.16 shows the dialog box that appears when the share menu option is selected.


Figure 10.16 The share view dialog box

The share link option allows you to send a link in an e-mail or to embed the view within a website. Both of the options allow you to optionally set the pixel height and width of the view, and also to define whether or not the toolbar or tabs are displayed.

Customized views

If you regularly look at certain views and find you need to make some changes each time you open the views, you can create custom views that “remember” your changes. Each time you open a custom view, it displays the information you want to see. You can then share custom views with other Tableau Server users who have permission to see the original view.

Users can make mark selections, apply filters or highlights, and then save those settings in a customized view. Figure 10.17 shows a visualization in which the color legend for the Americans has been saved as a custom view and it is termed as Americans highlighted view.


Figure 10.17 Saving a custom view

Saving any customized view involves performing below three steps:

  1. Click on the remember my changes link.
  2. Provide a name for the customized view.
  3. Click the remember button to save the view

Your customized view is saved, and you are redirected to a unique URL that is generated for the view. The remember my changes’ link is also changed to the name of your customized view. If you click the link, you’ll see a list of all the customized views you have saved along with a link to the original view published. To rename or delete any of your customized views, click the manage custom views link at the bottom of the listing.

Other users accessing the view of their own will still be presented with the original view as originally published, unless they use the unique URL for your customized view. Customized views provide a good way for users to save frequently used filter combinations without the need to rely on the publisher.

A significant new feature that arrived with the release of tableau version 8 is Web Authoring. This feature takes you beyond just saving customized views by allowing users that lack a tableau desktop license to alter and create totally new visualizations within the server.

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