1 Reply Latest reply on Jul 22, 2016 9:52 AM by Derrick Austin

    Usefulness of Extract API when using server?

    Dennis Garlick

      Hi,

       

      I came across the Extract API discussion, and are having a hard time understanding exactly what its use case is. I understand if you wanted to update a tde on tableau desktop automatically. However, if you are using tableau server to deliver reports, it would seem that tableau server's scheduled refresh functionality serves the same purpose. My confusion is that the example at:

       

      http://www.tableau.com/learn/tutorials/on-demand/extract-api-connecting-data?signin=d33469553d567674bd156482f3f08ead

       

      talks about refreshing from a csv file - a database format that tableau server does support for automatic refresh. So why would you use the Extract API in this case - unless it is strictly for tableau desktop? I presume that there would be no advantage to using the Extract API with Tableau Server if the data source is csv, but it's not clear exactly what Tableau Server does in the background for its automatic refresh and whether the Extract API could still serve some function in this case. In short, is there any reason to look at the Extract API when server is being used to automatically refresh from csv to begin with?

       

      Thanks.

        • 1. Re: Usefulness of Extract API when using server?
          Derrick Austin

          Hey Dennis,

           

          The Extract API can work around several connectivity issues. For example, in your case - the csv file- the file would have to be hosted on a shared drive that the system can access in order to be refreshed on Tableau Server. Using the extract API, you can easily refresh this and publish it up.

          When using cloud based providers, this becomes especially helpful.

           

          One additional benefit of the Extract API is it can be hosted on Linux environments, which many people like to use for their server infrastructures.

          (For example, with a particular client setup, we pull from a localhost Postgres DB with the extract API on Linux and publish it up to a cloud hosted Tableau Server)

           

          Also, you can scrub/modify the data in Python before packaging it up for the Extract. Overall, I've been pretty happy with the API... but I'm a programmer, so I'm biased.

           

          Hope this helps clarify!