4 Replies Latest reply on Feb 25, 2014 11:38 AM by Phillip Burger

    Tableau can't handle huge 150+ digit integers?


      I guess Tableau has a certain limit on the size of integers (not float). My data set has VERY large numbers that are around 150 digits. Tableau automatically converts them to text type. So am I out of luck? Is this out of the scope of this software?


      PS: my system is running 64bit Windows 7 if that matters.

        • 1. Re: Tableau can't handle huge 150+ digit integers?
          Phillip Burger

          I have never heard of an application for a 150-digit integer. My answer below sidesteps the 150+ digit integer and focuses instead on large integers of the 64-, 128-, and 256-bit variety.


          The attached workbook includes 64-bit integer input on one worksheet (the minimum value) and 128-bit integer input on the second worksheet (the minimum value).


          The minimum integer on the 64-bit worksheet is 9,223,372,036,854,775,807, or 263 − 1, the maximum size of a signed, 64-bit integer.


          The minimum integer on the 128-bit worksheet is 170,141,183,460,469,231,731,687,303,715,884,105,727, or 2127 − 1, the maximum size of a signed, 128-bit integer.


          Are you using SQL Server or other relational database management system (RDBMS)?


          Try loading your data from a tab delimited text file.


          I am running 64-bit Windows 7.

          • 2. Re: Tableau can't handle huge 150+ digit integers?

            Thanks for that Phillip. I guess that answers my question, the numbers are just too large. It would be great if Tableau had the so called "arbitrary precision" like in Python. Maybe a python plotting lib will do it, I'll try and see.

            • 3. Re: Re: Tableau can't handle huge 150+ digit integers?
              Phillip Burger

              I think it would make a good knowledge base article to describe how to load and use large integer values in Tableau without losing precision. Large integers being the standard, signed 64-bit or greater.


              I don't know if the limitation is in Tableau or not. I do know for sure that the JET Database Engine is limited. The largest signed, integer is 32-bit.


              I tried loading 64-bit signed integers with the currency and money JET types in a schema.ini file. (These are 64-bit. These didn't load and I'll follow up in a separate thread.)


              We're going to need an answer from Tableau to confirm the largest, signed integers that Tableau is designed to handle without losing precision. And, what methods and sources should be used. I haven't seen this elsewhere and it would be helpful for the community to have this information.

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              • 4. Re: Tableau can't handle huge 150+ digit integers?
                Phillip Burger

                Attached is another workbook showing that precision is lost in 64-bit integers. I used the power() function to create different integers from 8-bit to 64-bit. These were created as calculated fields and do don't have anything to do with JET.


                I just posted about this problem in R a few days ago. John Myles White brought it.


                Data Corruption in R When Trying to Use 64-bit Integers | Phillip Burger


                Tableau does not support 64-bit signed integers without a loss in precision.


                Be careful. Know the limitations of the tool you're using.