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Do these errors appear as results of extract refresh attempts or do you get them every time user looks at a view? From the error description it looks like the server machine cannot connect to the Oracle database that was specified in the connection by the publisher.
If that database is available to the server machine and can be accessed by other applications on it but not Tableau Server, then the problem is most likely the environment variable - here is the how-to, just in case: http://kb.tableausoftware.com/articles/knowledgebase/oracle-connection
Yeah, I used that KB article. I did set the enviro. variable, added a TNSNAMES.ORA file (path matches variable), and reboot the machine.
I'm waiting on author feedback about whether the db is available to the server (via Data Connection thru the server). Oracle Client hasn't been installed on the server so that's my next step if things still fail.
Okay, it works! Whew! Here's what I did:
Oracle Client isn't on our Tableau Server box but that's no big deal. I manually created the directory C:\Oracle_Client\network\admin
I then copied the necessary lines from my end user's TNSNAMES.ORA file into a text editor (I highly recommend Notepad++) and saved the file as TNSNAMES.ORA in the admin folder (names and addresses have been changed to protect the innocent):
# Production EDP1 Database
(COMMUNITY = tcp.world)
(PROTOCOL = TCP)
(Host = 99.999.9.99)
(Port = 1521)))
(CONNECT_DATA = (SID = EDP1)))
Next, I updated the machine's PATH as described in the URL above (section "Set the TNS_Admin environment variable") and also rebooted the server.
Accessing the Oracle database
Users now open Tableau Desktop, Connect to Data, On a server, and select Oracle
In the connection dialog window, "Step 1" would be 99.999.9.99:1521/EDP1.world. If you were to click on the Advanced... button here's how you would enter in the info:
Server Name: 99.999.9.99
Service Name: EDP1.world
Click OK button.
The other Steps are filled out as necessary; for my users they used a specific username and password.