Data viz · Tableau

Tableau 9.1.0

The company i work for stopped our Tableau maintenance last year. Maintenance expired on Sept 2015, so the latest version i could get is Tableau 9.1.0.

After almost 12 months using it, i encounter a few uncomfortable things, well whatever you called it, error? bug? problem? limitation?

When i “meet” new problem/error, i tend to look for what cause them, sometimes i find the cause, mostly i don’t. Sometimes error occurred out of nowhere, which is very much making me wanted to flip my desk.

So i make my own Tableau-Error-101 list to remind myself at work :

  • To Synchronize axis (chart with dual axis) : Measures must have the same data type (right click on your Measure >> change data type).
  • Trend line can’t be used for Discrete, change it to Continuous.
  • Tooltips’ Decimal Places depends on Axis’ decimal places which is quite annoying (can’t do anything about that).
  • I have a problem with my data type, a few times. Lets say i have a Measure called “A”, (in excel) it’s a number decimal. But in Tableau it’s Number (whole) instead of Number (decimal), at that time i thought “well i can just change it into Number (decimal), problem solved!“, turns out that’s NOT solving my problem. I can’t use Number (whole), because the Total would be completely different. So in the end i have to copy and paste “A” to another column. One thing i noticed is that, if your data is a number decimal, then your Measure’s “Describe..” should be “double precision” instead of “single precision”.
  • Save workbook failed……” If this happens, I suggest you to read this thread >>

In my case, this famous error occurs a lot (data > 1 million records), what i do to solve this:

  1. Do not close your file, try to open the same file, maybe it’s already saved (happened once).
  2. Delete temporary data (C:\Users\…\AppData\Local\Temp\TableauTemp), and save your work.
  3. Export your important sheets/dashboards to .twb/ .twbx, close file, re-open, import your sheets/dashboard.
  4. If 3 alternatives above are not working, then there is only one way, DO IT OVER! Mostly 1 or 2 sheets, that’s not a lot of work right? Besides, if you wasted 10 minutes over ONE sheet, then you might want to consider changing your design, 10 minutes for one sheet is just too much. Wait, are you sure only 1 or 2 sheets? Well my habit is that after i’ve done with one sheet, i save my work, so that when this error occurred, i know that the latest sheet i touch is the one causing this error, delete, save! (it works every time).

I recommend you to read a blog post about How to auto save your tableau workbook.

One sign this error would likely to happen : Type-in formula in column/row/measure value shelf is not working.

Probably caused by:

  1. Out of nowhere
  2. Abusing undo-redo
  3. Abusing Quick table calculation button
  4. Abusing rename button
  • Highlight dashboard actions is not working, both Highlight and Highlight (generated), look at the pictures below : Highlight and Highlight (generated)

You see, when i highlight “2022”, not all related bar get highlighted. So why is it not working? After re-doing my work, turns out problem occurs because i place “Measure Names” dimension in Marks All card.

1.4 highlight_dashboard actions not working cause

Why do i place it there? In one sheet, different axis, i have 3 different measure values; a, b, and c. By placing “Measure Names” dimension in Marks All card, i can simplify my tooltips :

Alright, that’s all for now, gonna keep updating this list if i encounter more error messages and find more causes. Until then, 뿅!


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