6 Replies Latest reply on Oct 24, 2012 2:48 PM by . Tableautester

    Using Custom WMS

    Hans Huisken

      Among others, i am deploying my own custom WMS.

      Based on OpenStreetMap and Geoserver,i got it working i.e. to get Tableau Desktop retrieve tiles from my customer WMS.

      But i run into a couple of 'inconveniences' and looking forward to see your comment on those issues.


      I've read a lot of postings on WMS here and it was stated that Tableau would request tile in EPSG:4326 projection.

      Question 1: Is this actually true?


      Looking at the URL Tableau fires towards my WMS, reported in Tableau's log-file (i wrapped the text around):

      2012-04-25 15:04:23.136 (0444): Solid color tile returned from ',43.6993,7.4530,43.7299&format=image/png&height=712&,43.6993,7.4530,43.7299&format=image/png&height=712&layers=osm:boundary,osm:building,osm:coastline,osm:landuse,osm:place,osm:poi,osm:railway,



      It's clear Tableau requests EPSG:4269 and not EPSG:4326 although provided by my WMS.



      Looking at the result in Tableau, i am not satisfied. Have a look at the attached screenshots.


      P1 showing the default online tableau map @ zoomlevel 16 in 4 tiles of 747x821pixels.     Looking fine but my customer wants to see buildings which are not in the Tableau Map


      P2 showing the same area thru my custom WMS. Tableau logfile report @ zoomlevel 13 with  4 tiles 705x821.     The picture is already a bit fading.


      P3 showing a must larger area which Tableau also requests my WMS @ zoomlevel 13 using 9 tiles 705x821.     Nothing wrong with that. Nice usable, showable picture.


      P4 Showing this map zoomed in at maximum in Tableau. Map is still shown @ zoomlevel 13 using a single tile.     The result is not presentable to my customer. Tableau is still at zoomlevel 13 on my WMS but even on a larger area in Tableau map on zoomlevel 16 (P1)


      P5 Shows my WMS via OpenLayers website on the P4 area which is a usable, presentable pic. I.e my WMS can produce nice pics. (Pls notice zoomlevel 18 on OpenLayers is not comparable with the zoomlevel scale in Tableau).



      Question 2: How can you direct/infleunce the Tableau zoomlevel?

      I can imation that Tableau wants to reduce tile-requests on 'their' Urban Mapping server. (Today displaying red-crossed-tiles repeatingly).

      But when you are in control of infrastructure and your own WMS, how can you achieve using its full capabilities?



      Question 3: What WMS-URL variables could be used in conjuction with Tableau?


      Feel free to join this discussion?


      Kind Regards,


        • 1. Re: Using Custom WMS
          . Tableautester

          It would really be helpful for us if there was a way to give Tableau a username and password for authenticating to our internal WMS server, which can't be used until authentication is completed.

          • 2. Re: Using Custom WMS
            Ian White

            Hi Hans


            A bit late to this thread, but wondering if you could explain why you have deployed your own WMS. Are there specific capabilities you would like to see, different map styling/layers, etc....? We work closely with Tableau for mapping, so I'd like to better understand what you are hoping to achieve.




            • 3. Re: Using Custom WMS
              . Tableautester

              We pay vendors for WMS services which can't be displayed in Tableau currently because we can't pass the username and password to authenticate Tableau to the WMS services.

              • 4. Re: Using Custom WMS
                Hans Huisken

                Hi Ian,


                Major reason was that my Tableau customer is running his Tableau Server in a highly secure environment without Internet access. So, there is a need for a local WMS service.


                Besides that each of their offices serves a particular geographic area, based on a set of postal codes. And they want to show these sales areas as a color-filled polygon on maps. This can be done with custom geocoding as well but packaged workbooks can get big.


                Another customer, in real estate, likes the building polygons at street zoom level. So yes, other layers


                And, at the time of my first posting, performance was an issue as well. A lot of red crosses instead of maps. I am not aware of performance issues recently. But maybe that has been addressed .....


                Cheers, Hans.

                • 5. Re: Using Custom WMS
                  Hans Huisken

                  Hi betatester,


                  I guess, you did ask your WMS supplier for the possibility to wrap the username and password in the URL (in a secure way (maby thru a ticker-id)?


                  I used geoserver (but could have used another) and read, it can proxy towards other WMS systems.

                  And kind of remember, i read geoserver could be username/password protected. You might want to take a look at the geoserver documentation.


                  Rgds, Hnas

                  • 6. Re: Using Custom WMS
                    . Tableautester

                    I tried passing the UserName and Password in the URL, Tableau doesn't like the "s" which is required, Tableau says "The URL is not valid"


                    Here is an example: