Tableau File Types - Learn All File Extensions

In this Tableau file types blog, we'll go through the many file types that Tableau has to offer. Tableau allows you to save your work in roughly seven to eight different file extensions and directories.

This blog examines all of the tableau file extensions that you can use to store your work, as well as what they include, why you'd use them, and how they're created. 

Table of Content - Tableau File Types

Tableau File Types

Workbooks, bookmarks, packaged data files, data extracts, and data connection files are all Tableau-specific file types that you can use to preserve your work. Each of these file types is elaborated further below.

1. Tableau Workbooks (.twb)

Tableau Workbook(.twb)When working in Tableau, the Tableau Workbook file format is the one you'll utilize the most. The extension of this file format is. twb, and it is the default for users. A workbook in Tableau is a file that contains sheets, dashboards, and other components.

As a result, this Tableau file type includes data about the worksheets and dashboards in a workbook. These files contain all of the information on the fields, aggregate kinds, styles, formatting, filters, etc.

To create a.twb file, go to the active data connection's data source control panel, then to the File option (in the toolbar), and select Save As. Then, from the Save As Type drop-down list, choose Tableau Workbook as the file type.

Tableau File Types

2. Tableau Bookmarks (.tbm)

Tableau BookmarksTableau Bookmark files are those with the. Tbm extension. These Tableau file types can store and share worksheets with others to utilize them in their workbooks without starting from scratch.

Go to the Windows option on the toolbar to create a.tbm file. Select Bookmark and then Create Bookmark from the drop-down menu. The bookmark will save the active worksheet as an a.tbm file.

The use of Bookmark files has decreased since the release of a newer version of Tableau. We can immediately copy and paste worksheets from one workbook to another in Tableau versions 8.1 and beyond without creating an a.tbm file.

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3. Tableau Packaged Workbooks (.twbx)

Tableau Packaged WorkbookThe Tableau Packaged Workbook file type contains metadata about a workbook's constituents and data derived from the data source. A.tde file includes the data extracted from the start. The extension. twbx utilized for Tableau Packaged Workbooks.

When sharing a workbook with a user who does not have access to the live data connection, you can use a.twbx file type instead of a.twb (Tableau Workbook) file. As a result, you'll require a file containing the data taken from the source and other information about the workbook in this scenario.

Tableau Packaged Workbook files can also include information about associated images or geocoding that gets altered. To make a.twbx file, go to File, then Save As, and then choose.twbx from the drop-down list.

4. Tableau Extract (.hyper or .tde)

Tableau Data ExtractThe extension. tde is used for Tableau Data Extract files. Only a local copy of the complete or a subset of data from the source gets stored in these Tableau file types. It's worth noting that. tde files don't include a file location or information about the data source, workbooks, dashboards, or other items.

Tableau Data Extract files are vital and valuable since they are heavily compressed and optimized to help Tableau run faster (especially when using a slow data connection). .tde files can also be used for offline work.

The data in such Tableau file formats cannot be automatically renewed when refreshes at the source, a known shortcoming. On the other hand, Tableau features a two-step approach for refreshing data stored as an extract in your .tde files.

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Tableau DataSourceTableau Data Source files are files that contain all the information required for a Tableau data connection. When we create a new link to a data source, we make several changes to it to meet our needs, such as data types, aggregations, custom fields, and so on.

The Tableau Data Source files provide all necessary information for setting up a data connection and metadata for any additional user customizations. The. tds file can save data on data connections, including custom fields and table joins.

This Tableau file type, on the other hand, simply keeps the information required to connect to a data source, not the data itself.

Go to the Data tab on the toolbar to create an a.tds file. Then click Add To Saved Data Source from the drop-down menu and choose a data source to connect. Save the file as a Tableau Data Source file after that.

6. Tableau Packaged Data Source (.tdsx)

Tableau Packaged DataSourceA Tableau Packaged Data Source file contains information about a data source connection and its data. The extracted data is saved as an a.tde file, while the source information is kept as an a.tds file. Data can be removed from any local file, including text files, extract files (.hyper or. tde), Excel files, Access files, and so on.

A Tableau Packaged Data Source file, on the other hand, has the extension. tdsx. When we wish to share data and additional relevant information about a data source with a user who does not have access to the data source or its data, we utilize Tableau Packaged Data Source files.

Go to the Data tab on the toolbar to create an a.tdsx file. Then click Add To Saved Data Source from the drop-down menu and choose a data source to connect. Save the file as a Tableau Packaged Data Source file after that.

What is the difference between TDS and TDSX?

The difference between TDS and TDSX is the information about the data, not the data itself, is contained in the. tds file. The data is also included in a Tableau Packaged Datasource (.tdsx).

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7. Tableau Preference (.tps)

Tableau PreferencesA Tableau Preference file stores all of the data associated with a custom color palette. You can design a custom color palette or theme and save it as an a.tps file to utilize it consistently across the worksheet.

Tableau Preference files are in XML format and contain the extension. tps.

My Tableau Repository contains these Tableau Preference files.

8. Tableau Map Source (.tms)

Tableau Map SourceFor usage in Tableau, a Tableau Map Source file contains information on maps and their elements. .tms is the file extension for such files. By default, tableau will acquire map data such as backdrop and other layers from a specific map server or provider.

You can add map details from a WMS server of your choosing or a custom map from Mapbox to Tableau. Tableau will retrieve map details from that file instead of the default one and load map images and information accordingly whenever you generate a map file (.tms) of your choice. You can also share these. tms users with others in your organization.

Click Map from the toolbar to produce a Tableau Map Source (.tms) file. Then, from Map Services> Add, pick WMS Server from Background Maps. By selecting an Export option from the WMS Server connections window after adding the map server of your choice, you can export it to your local desktop. Add the .tms file to the Tableau Repository in the Map sources directory to utilize this map in the future.

Tableau Repository

The My Tableau Repository directory contains all of the Tableau file types that we looked at. The Tableau Repository is located in the My Documents folder and is created when Tableau is installed.

Tableau desktop's File option lets you alter the location of your Tableau Repository. After that, choose Repository Location from the drop-down menu. Select a folder to act as the new repository location in the Select a Repository dialogue box now.

This changes the repository location to the new folder. When you restart Tableau after changing the repository location, all the repository files will be saved to this new place. Remember that your old files will continue to be held in the default repository location, while the new site will save new files.


Tableau is a robust business intelligence and visualization tool. Because users do not need prior programming or coding abilities, this BI solution is straightforward to learn and use. Tableau provides a variety of visualization assets. Tableau File Types and Tableau Data Types are two of them that you've seen in this blog. The purpose of essential extension files and Tableau data types and how to generate them is discussed in this article.

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Last updated: 03 Apr 2023
About Author

Pradeep is tech-savvy, currently working as a content contributor at He writes articles on various tech spaces -Business Intelligence, Testing, Cloud, Project Management, Document Management etc.

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