3 Replies Latest reply on Nov 18, 2011 1:48 AM by audunmathiasygard

    More detailed settings for incremental extracts

      Are there any plans to be able to set more detailed rules for how to do an incremental extract? Or use custom SQL on the incremental extracts?


      Currently you are unable to ensure correct numbers when doing daily incremental extracts based on date (not datetime) fields, since any rows added on the same day *after* the incremental extract will not be picked up on the next incremental extract. No matter how late in the day you do the incremental extract, you are never guaranteed that the numbers are correct, since there will always be a small window of time where added rows will not be picked up in the next extract.


      Of course, you could always add an incremental ID to each row, but that's not really a possibility for everyone.


      IMHO, this could be easily be solved by being able to set the incremental extract to not pull data for the current day, only preceding days.


      Or am I missing some way to do this currently?

        • 1. Re: More detailed settings for incremental extracts
          Ryan K


          I've also considered this problem. I have not yet used incremental extracts because of this. Here's my idea:


          If Tableau enhanced Incremental Extracts to be more intelligent that would be great. The software should intelligently come up with a unique row ID without asking the user to choose a column. It should be basically like a differential backup using disk imaging software (if you're familiar with that). Meaning: Tableau should look at all rows and, if they have changed, update the row. If they're the same, do nothing. So, if you are going by date (in your example) and the date stays the same but another column's value in that row changes, will the incremental extract pick it up?

          Does Tableau assume that all data already in the extract will stay the same? Is the new data always "additive", like an append or SQL Insert?


          Just a sampling of my ideas here. Any thoughts?

          • 2. Re: More detailed settings for incremental extracts
            Richard Leeke

            You can actually control an incremental extract in exactly the way you are suggesting by not including the current/most recent day (or hour, or minute, or second if you have a datetime field available, so that you avoid trying to extract a period before it is guaranteed to be complete.  Even if you have a datetime field accurate to the second you can still miss rows in the current second if you have a significant transaction rate, unless you do this.


            It's explained in the material from one of the 2011 conference sessions - I think it's probably "Understanding Tableau’s Fast Data Engine - Matthew Eldridge & Richard Wesley" (I know it's one of the ones I've watched, I just can't quite remember which one - I think it's that one).


            Basically you just need to set an appropriate filter condition to exclude the most recent period when you first create the extract.

            • 3. Re: More detailed settings for incremental extracts

              Richard, that does exactly what I wanted. Thanks!