8.2 Preview: Visual Data Window

By Ellie Fields June 11, 2014
In Tableau 8.2 (currently in beta) we've completely redesigned the "Connect to Data" experience. A new visual data window lets you drag tables onto the canvas, preview it, and join it to other data visually. This video shows you what it looks like.

It's a more visual, intuitive experience. And by making the connection more visual, it's easier to avoid errors. It saves time in checking that you've joined your data correctly. And if you're trying to help colleagues or friends get started in analyzing data, this redesign should make it easier for them.

Other features that are available in the visual data window:

  • Switch from a live connection to a data extract, and back
  • Rename a data source
  • Delete a table
  • Indicate whether a table has column headers or not
  • Add data source filters
  • Show or hide hidden fields
  • Change a field name or data type

And of course, you can always come back to the data source and change options or add more tables as you need to.

Want to learn more about what's coming in Tableau 8.2? Read about the groundbreaking Story Points feature, and watch this space for more updates.

Comments

Submitted by Amy C. on

I wish you hadn't removed saved data sources as quick links when you click Connect to Data. It's available when you first open a new workbook, but that's it. If you're connecting to a new data source for, say, a new workbook page in an existing workbook, you have to step all the way through the connection even if you already had the data source saved because there's no link for saved data sources there.

Submitted by Amy D (not verified) on

Hello - When connecting to a new data source in 8.2, how do you select a location for the extract? I am creating an excel extract for a packaged workbook. It keeps sending to my local drive rather than giving me the option to save in a specific location.
Thanks!

Submitted by Will (not verified) on

Amy,

When you create an extract within a packaged data source the dialog box for save location has never been present in the last two years of my Tableau usage. You'll need to save a regular .TWB file if you'd like to specify a save location for your extract

Will

Submitted by Ellie F. on

In the new visual data window you can specify the location of an extract by choosing "Extract" and then clicking "ok" after you've made the choices in the dialog box. The file save window will pop and you can specify a location for the .tde.

Submitted by dor (not verified) on

How can I import more than one workbook to the new data window? I do not see this option, and I want to connect some different Excel files...

Submitted by Ellie F. on

The new data window supports joins and other operations on a single data source at a time. To bring more data into your workbook you still need to establish a new data connection. The Visual Data Window will be available for each separate connection, but will not allow you to join tables across connections. That's the role of data blending, and you can edit that behavior under the menu item Data --> Relationships.

Submitted by Griff (not verified) on

In 8.1 I could edit the data source to a new table with the same column names and the heirarchies would stay intact. That does not appear to be possible in 8.2, or am I just missing it? When I rename it in the window it doesn't actually go to that other table, it just changes the name in tableau but continues to reference the old table.

Submitted by Daniel Seisun (not verified) on

2 Questions:
1) In 8.1 and earlier I could set up my joins and conveniently click 'Custom SQL' and I would get all the joins written out. Is there an equivalent for the new layout?
2) If I rename a table in my join, what's an easy way to revert back to the original name? I can't seem to find a way to clear this metadata easily.

Submitted by Jerry Feng (not verified) on

in Tableau 8.2
Can I use the visualized join to between MySQL DB and external Excel file? I tried several times, but none has been successful.

Submitted by Ellie F. on

the new connection is for joins within data sources. To work across two data sources, such as My SQL and Excel, you would want to blend them. Connenct to each one individually, and then define the relationship form the Menu Data -> Relationships.

Submitted by Jerry feng (not verified) on

thanks for your reply, i f i use only the relationships tab to create joins, which kind of join is the default one? left or inner?
Can i modify the join types?

Submitted by Marvin R. on

I am having the same issue as you, Griff, where I simpy want to change my connection to another table and have everything in the workbook behave the same way. In prior versions, I would simply go to "Edit Connection," change the selection to the new table, and I'd be off to the races. The only way that I have found to accomplish this in 8.2 is to:
1. Select "Edit Data Source" to get to the data window
2. Click on the "Data" drop-down above the navigation arrows
3. Select "Convert to Custom SQL"
Once the window with the SQL opens, you change change all references to the old table to the new table. It's definitely clunky, but it works.

Submitted by abhinav (not verified) on

Dont forget to save the new connection after making the change. Save it using the save icon on the top left and give it a new name. Should address some of the issues mentioned above.<<<<<< This comment was blocked and unpublished because Project Honeypot indicates it came from a suspicious IP address.

Submitted by Michael Swigert (not verified) on

Is there a way in 8.2 to easily choose which fields from a table will be imported via the live connection or extract? In previous version, one could check/uncheck fields from the "Edit" view if you selected Multiple Tables.

Now it seems like the only option is to hide fields one by one, scrolling across horizontally, which is very cumbersome.<<<<<< This comment was blocked and unpublished because Project Honeypot indicates it came from a suspicious IP address.

Submitted by jerry feng (not verified) on

Hi Marvin,
Would you mind sharing one example for such join?
I have opened SQL window but the SQL statement always failed...

Submitted by Marvin R. on

Jerry - My comment was in response to Griff's comment (#7) regarding a change in source data.

Submitted by Abhinav (not verified) on

Dont forget to save the new connection after making the change. Save it using the save icon on the top left and give it a new name. Should address some of the issues mentioned above

Submitted by Bonnie s. on

I just upgraded to 8.2, what happened to the SAVED DATA SOURCES? I have several sources and loved that I can just click on them easily.

Same questions as #1 in comments. Is there another way to get to those?

Thanks, Bonnie

Submitted by Bonnie s. on

I don't see anyone replying to your comment. I hate this as well, did you find a work around?

Thanks, B.

Submitted by Jeremy Yuan (not verified) on

I am told that in Tableau 8.2, it is easy to change data source for only one sheet not others. Sometimes I spent time to format a sheet. Then I need to duplicate its format to another sheet and simply change data source. There is not a simple way to do it. But does 8.2 version make it possible/simple? If it is, could you please tell me how to do it? Thanks.

Submitted by Travis M. on

I also want to know if there is a way in 8.2 to easily choose which fields from a table will be imported via the live connection or extract? In previous version, one could check/uncheck fields from the "Edit" view if you selected Multiple Tables.
Also, is there a way to see the answers to the questions posted here? Is anyone answering them?

Submitted by Nathalie G. on

Hi Same issue for me: I see no answer and am also looking for a way to check uncheck the fields I need in the data connection. scrolling along the fields in Horizontal way is unpracticable.
Please help.

Submitted by Marvin R. on

Jeremy - Please see my comment above regarding custom SQL. That's the only way that I have been able to achieve what you're trying to do.

Submitted by Ellie F. on

In the previous version, unchecking was just hiding which you can now do from the headers in the Visual Data Window. We hear you that you need the ability to exclude fields, however-- it's in the imx as a feature request.

Submitted by Caleb (not verified) on

Regarding relationships (e.g. joins) between data sources, what type of join is the default? Is there a way to view/edit the join type (in SQL if necessary)? I am coming across odd behavior that I think I will need to report as a bug. A join is returning erroneous data that a normal inner join should be excluding. But it doesn't appear to be consistent from what I can tell, and I'd like to view information on the type of join that was created when I established a relationship between two data sources.

Submitted by Dr Ebby Sargunar (not verified) on

I don't need this. Thanks anyway. Please tell me how to remove it,as I don't see how to remove it. Why is this?

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