In a growing self-service analytics deployment, there is a tendency towards proliferating similar or redundant data models. With many data sources and models to choose from, it’s difficult for (1) IT to manage access to the right data and (2) data stewards to promote models ready for use. It’s also hard for analysts and other dashboard users to know how to find data they can trust and that is relevant to their questions.

In Tableau, the first step to governing your data is using Data Server to publish and share your data models. What comes next? How can you get people to use your curated published data sources, and ensure that they are connecting to data they can trust? How can you encourage analysts to reuse existing data sources, rather than building their own every time they have a question? Tableau 10.4 gives you that next step through data source certification and published data source recommendations.

Data source certification

Data source certification enables your data stewards to promote specific data sources in your Tableau deployment as trusted and ready for use. Certified data sources get preferential treatment in Tableau Server search results and in our smart data source recommendations algorithm so that they are discoverable and easily reusable. Follow along for a look of certification in action:

Edit the certification status of a data source on the details tab of the Data Source page in Tableau Server.

Project leaders, site admins, and Tableau Server administrators have permission to certify data sources.


Certification notes allow you to describe why a particular data source can be trusted. These notes are accessible throughout Tableau when viewing this data source.


Once certified, data sources display the certification badge and certifier under their titles so that users can quickly identify them.

After receiving certification, certified data sources receive preferential treatment in search results and stand out in data source lists in Tableau Server and Tableau Desktop.

The certification note is available nearly everywhere the certification icon is shown.

Certified data sources enable data stewards to promote specific data sources so that they are more discoverable by Tableau users in the organization. Try it out in Tableau 10.4 beta.

Recommended data sources

Recommended data sources is the second feature coming out this year that uses Tableau’s new recommendation engine. It improves discoverability of relevant data and accelerate users through data preparation so that they can focus on their analysis. With recommended data sources, users are presented with relevant published data sources in the flow of their data preparation, saving time and encouraging proper data source reuse. Let’s take a closer look:

Data sources come recommended when you are connected to most databases and signed into Tableau Server.

As you select databases, schemas, and tables in Tableau Desktop, the recommendations engine refines recommended data sources to serve up the best, most specific data to your analysis.

Recommendation rankings are personalized, learning which data sources you, and people like you in your organization, have used in the past on this Tableau Server. Since certified data sources are vetted as particularly important, they are ranked more highly than non-certified data sources in the rankings algorithm.

After you find the right data source to use, add it to your workbook to begin analysis right away. You can test this feature in Tableau 10.4 beta.

Improvements to data discovery and governance

Data source certifications and data source recommendations will help you make your data sources discoverable and improve data stewards’ abilities to govern enterprise-wide analytics effectively in Tableau.

Both features help reduce the proliferation of redundant data models and save analysts time when trying to find good data that they can trust. Try out certification and recommendations in Tableau 10.4, and let us know what you think!

Stay up to date

Certification and recommended data sources join other major feature announcements in Tableau 10.4. In this release, we’re committed to helping you get the right data in front of the right people, across the enterprise.

When it's time to share, with the ability to downgrade and publish workbooks, your collaborators will be sure to get insights they need—even if your organization is running an older version of Tableau Server.

Get everyone speaking the same language. Viz snapshots and commenting engage the experts around you in conversation threads that root your business decisions in the facts.

And for more powerful visualizations, we’ve added improved dashboard spacing and linear geometry spatial file support, too.

Download Tableau 10.4 beta.

Your input drives our product development—we’re excited to get your feedback!

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