7 Replies Latest reply on Aug 19, 2016 2:40 AM by kettan

    Need to setup Email Alerts without Tableau Server using Viz Alerts or any other

    HARIKRISHNA MADETI

      Hello,

       

      I am working on a handful of Tableau workbooks and I would like to set up Alerts on the data. I need to set up an email automation platform like Viz Alerts but the issue is that we don't have a Tableau Server. What are my options at this point, if we can't afford to setup a Tableau server? VizAlerts

        • 1. Re: Need to setup Email Alerts without Tableau Server using Viz Alerts or any other
          Jonathan Drummey

          There is no API for Tableau Desktop so you'd need to manually open workbooks and generate the alerts. Last I knew Tableau Server was about $10K, you might find it worth it to stand up a Tableau Server instance sooner rather than later.

           

          Jonathan

          • 2. Re: Need to setup Email Alerts without Tableau Server using Viz Alerts or any other
            kettan

            Here is my understanding of Tableau's licensing:

             

            The spirit of the license is that Tableau doesn't want multiple people "consuming" Tableau from a single license:

            The real answer is "I don't know, let the lawyers decide" on something like that. I can speak to what I think the spirit of the law is, though: Not so long ago we changed licensing so that if you wanted to "broadcast" a screen in a workplace (for example, an operational dashboard that is on a big screen in the office) you needed a core license.

             

            That tells me we don't want multiple people "consuming" Tableau from a single license. It happens to speak to the the previous scenario we were discussing (which is much more cut and dry) but also applies to this one, I think. Ultimately, I believe it comes down to the question of "Can a user without a Tableau license consume Tableau content". We (I use that loosely - translation: "me") think a user who leverages stuff created by Tableau should pay. Now you can take this thought and go down all sorts of crazy paths ("I exported a pic from Tableau and dropped it in a PowerPoint deck - does everyone who views that deck have to pay?") , and I think thats where the laywers come in - if it ever gets to that,

             

            Re: How does Tableau define "user" exactly?  Trying to make the pitch for Tableau at my organization.   as stated by  Russell Christopher  March 22, 2015

             

            Scenarios against 'the spirit of the license' could be:

             

            1. Sharing PNG files on portals with many readers (internal and external) on a regular basis
            2. Sharing PDF files with many consumers (such as via email) on a regular basis

             

            And even if everything is done manually, it would still be against 'the spirit of the license'.

            I am also wondering if 1 and 2 would be against 'the spirit of the license' when done once or rarely.

             

            Tableau Reader & TWBX

            The reason why we are allowed to share TWBX files (if manually created, that is) is because these are supposed to contain sensitive data and therefore not gonna be used as a replacement for paying license. Based on various questions in this forum, there seem to be many who use TWBX files for reporting as a way to avoid to pay (fortunes in) license.

             

            The EULA is clearly against scripting in regard to TWBX and Reader:  Re: Automated sharing of twbx files

             

            Your question

            What are my options at this point, if we can't afford to setup a Tableau server?

            I am curious to know if 'we can't afford' should be taken literally (such as profit of company is smaller than cost of Tableau Server) or if this is more about cost being greater than expected benefit and thus not considered worth the investment.

             

            As for options, I don't see any within 'the spirit of the license' for mass mailing of Tableau exports (png, pdf, etc). You could of course try to make a good deal with Tableau     In this regard you might be encouraged by  Tableau beats estimates, says pricing will be more aggressive | SiliconANGLE.

             

            As for alternatives to Tableau, it would depend on so many things. If you use SQL Server, you might do something like the solution presented in  Email blast based on data condition...

             

            This thread is hereby added to a collection about licensing under "Related : Discussions" in  Improved server license model for medium size companies.

            • 3. Re: Need to setup Email Alerts without Tableau Server using Viz Alerts or any other
              Jonathan Drummey

              kitten, I've got a couple of counter-examples to the part around PDF and PNG distribution: The VizAlerts https://github.com/tableau/VizAlerts scripts support emailing PNGs and PDFs to non-Tableau server users and  (as you can see from the URL) the script is hosted on Tableau's own GitHub account. In addition, Metric Insights has the same functionality (and more) and they are a partner of Tableau. So in practice Tableau appears to be ok with using Tableau Server to generate PDFs and PNGs for non-Tableau Server users, and therefore I'd now tend towards reading the "spirit of the license" differently than those earlier statements.

               

              Jonathan

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              • 4. Re: Need to setup Email Alerts without Tableau Server using Viz Alerts or any other
                kettan

                So in practice Tableau appears to be ok with using Tableau Server to generate PDFs and PNGs for non-Tableau Server users, and therefore I'd now tend towards reading the "spirit of the license" differently than those earlier statements.

                Thanks, Jonathan. Very interesting. And good news!

                 

                It would be very helpful to get this officially confirmed by Tableau though.

                 

                Do you think this would include scenarios such as:

                 

                1. automatic mass emailing of PNGs/PDFs with tools such as AutoIt with a single license of Desktop only
                2. automatic transfer of PNGs to internal portals (to unlicensed users)
                3. showing exported PNGs on big screens (to unlicensed users)

                 

                Do you think this freedom to share is limited to those who have Tableau Server?

                Or might this in your opinion also include companies with a single Desktop license only?

                • 5. Re: Need to setup Email Alerts without Tableau Server using Viz Alerts or any other
                  Jonathan Drummey

                  I'm sorry, I'm not a lawyer and wouldn't want to try to be one.

                   

                  Jonathan

                  • 6. Re: Need to setup Email Alerts without Tableau Server using Viz Alerts or any other
                    kettan

                    Thank you for a wise answer 

                     

                    Here is a comparison of similarities and differences based on the assumption that 1) the usage scenario shared by you is allowed, 2) those shared by me ain't, and 3) the company already has a license to use Tableau Server:

                     

                    similaritiesdifferences

                    the same objects (PNG)

                    vehicle of delivery: email vs portal/big screen

                    the same users (who want free PNGs delivered)includes users who didn't ask for it

                     

                    Based on the assumptions above, I find it a little bit strange:

                    • that those who are real users get a free service (png delivered to their email when they want it)
                    • but that this cannot be extended to those who have no known desire for this free service
                      • of course, managers do have a known desire to inform and educate their employees about the business, and thus a real user
                        • doing this with email would probably have more minuses than pluses because of the distraction and irritation that would create
                        • and therefore fair enough to pay for this service and thus maybe not such a strange difference after all 

                     

                    Having a company wide license would of course be much easier 

                    • 7. Re: Need to setup Email Alerts without Tableau Server using Viz Alerts or any other
                      kettan

                      I'm sorry, I'm not a lawyer and wouldn't want to try to be one.

                      I can't find any restrictions in  eula  about

                      1. how output can or can't be used or
                      2. if automation and scripting is allowed or not

                       

                      Based on this, it seems anything goes including earlier mentioned scenarios:

                      1. automatic mass emailing of PNGs/PDFs with tools such as AutoIt and a single license of Desktop only
                      2. automatic transfer of PNGs to internal portals viewed by unlicensed users
                      3. automatic transfer of PNGs for slideshows on big screens viewed by unlicensed users

                       

                      I am not convinced yet - actually, I don't think any of the scenarios above has Tableau's blessing, and also doubt if the scenario you mentioned has - and think it would be helpful if made plain.