Automating server with tableau’s command line tools
As your tableau server deployment broadens, the number of users and the amount of data you have to maintain will grow. Tableau provides two command line tools that will help you automate regular tasks. Most of the functions the command line tools provide are available directly within the tableau server’s user interface.
Using windows notepad (or your favorite text editor) you can automate tabcmd to run via a batch file. Then by using windows task scheduler, you can trigger the batch file to run at a specific time or based on a specific triggering event. Of coursem, many prominent scripting or programming tools can call tableau’s command line functions to automate tasks. How you use these tools is only limited depending on your desire and creativity.
If you are a system administrator and familiarised to writing scripts and using the windows command processor and windows task scheduler, you will not have difficulty in incorporating tabcmd or tabadmin into your existing toolset. Many people don’t use the command line utilities because their full functionality is not clearly understood, or they have not seen any specific use case examples. Tableau software provides some good introductory videos on their website. You can find those by searching for on demand training and looking in the server section for the tabcmd and tabadmin videos.
What do tabcmd and tabadmin do?
Tableau’s two command line tools are tabcmd and tabadmin. Tabcmd provides functions for performing workflow tasks like publishing workbooks, adding users, or exporting workbooks as images or data files. Tabadmin is designed for server administration-configuring server options, activating users, resetting passwords, and other tasks associated with managing the deployment and usage of the server within the enterprise.
A person with publishing rights might want to use tabcmd to automate repetitive tasks associated with updating and publishing data sources. A server administrator can leverage tabadmin to set up a new site, grant or revoke user rights, back up the data, alter default session time-out settings (get input from tableau support or a qualified tableau partner before changing these settings), or reset user passwords. Think of tabcmd as a tool for helping those who publish and share. Tabadmin is an automation tool for staff with administrative responsibilities meanwhile helping them to have controlled access, tweak settings, or observe system status.
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