New in Tableau Prep: Cleaning improvements, database wildcard union, and PDF connector

In the October release of Tableau Prep 2018.3.1, you can now apply any operation on any step in your flow and track changes along the way.

Data prep can be complex. We created Tableau Prep to take the pain out of data prep, and we’re continually taking steps to make data prep more straightforward by giving you the tools to simplify your flows. In the October release of Tableau Prep (2018.3.1), you can now apply any operation on any step in your flow and track changes along the way.

This release also boasts a wildcard union option for database connections and a brand new connector for PDF files, giving you even more flexibility.

Clean and track your changes in every step

Cleaning your data inside a step such as join, union, pivot, or aggregate step just got so much easier. You can now edit your values, change data types, and perform all other cleaning operations inside any step in your flow. For example, when you want to join your data and then clean your join results, rather than creating separate join and cleaning steps, you can now transform and clean your data all one step. The ability to take any action in any step and track changes along the way will make your flows simpler, more understandable, and easier to troubleshoot.

Before this feature, you could only clean and track changes in a cleaning step.

In this release, cleaning operations can now be applied and tracked in a join step!

Apply a wildcard union to your database connection

Have you ever connected to a database with 12 distinct tables? Perhaps your data was partitioned across all these tables by month. As part of your data prep, did you want to combine and clean all of that data? With this release, we’ve introduced wildcard union for databases. Simply specify a pattern, as you would today when using wildcard union for file-based connections. Tableau Prep will pick up all relevant tables in the database and automatically combine them with a union. You no longer have to drag and drop each table to create a union.

Connect to data using the PDF connector

We know that data stored in static PDF files can be difficult to extract and clean. In this release, we’re introducing a PDF connector so you can connect directly to your PDF file. Clean your PDF tables or combine them with other disparate data sources. It’s now just as easy to integrate PDF files into your data workflow as any other data source.

We’re constantly adding features to help make data preparation simpler, faster, and less error-prone. Download the latest version of Tableau Prep today.