1 2 Previous Next 15 Replies Latest reply on Sep 8, 2017 10:16 AM by evan.pickett

    Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email

    evan.pickett

      Hi,

       

      I have successfully installed VizAlerts.(Thanks, Matt!) However, I am having trouble configuring the dashboard I am using for testing VizAlerts to show what I want it to show.

       

      The header (custom) and footer (default) show up, and the email is sent to the correct address, but there is no VIZ_IMAGE(), subject, or body.

       

      These are included in the viz:

       

      I'm assuming I've missed something in the docs, but I'm confused as to why "Email Header" would work and not anything else.

       

      Here is the text of each, less the default // comments:

       

      Email Action*:

      1

       

      Email To:

      'email'

       

      Email Subject:

      'Daily Operations Dashboard for' + STR(TODAY())

       

      Email Header: [see above]

      'Hello, here is the Operations update for ' + STR(TODAY()) + '<br /><br /> Best, <br />The Robots<br /><br />'

       

      Email Body:

      'This is the email body. <br /><br />

       

      VIZ_IMAGE(Dashboard/OperationsDashboard)'

       

       

       

      Best,

      Evan

        • 1. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
          Matt Coles

          The key word here is "dashboard". See the two bullet points here:

           

          1. Only one View within the Dashboard can be used to trigger the Alert
          2. The triggering View is the one whose name comes first in alphabetical order

          So that means you need to make sure the sheet with your fields on it has a name that comes first alphabetically. Typically, I just like to add a hyphen on the front: "-MySheet". That works pretty well as a quick and easy way to do it. If you're showing the Caption, it defaults to the Sheet Name, so you might want to hand-edit it to pretty it up a bit, but it'll still work just fine.

           

          Let me know if that helps!

          Matt

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          • 2. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
            evan.pickett

            Hi Matt,

             

            I'm not sure if that's the issue. Whatever I type into 'Email Body', 'Email Footer', 'Email Header', and 'Email Subject' shows up as 'null' in a view (or dashboard). The 'Email To', 'Email From', and 'Email Action' fields are not null. That's probably the (obvious) root cause; I hadn't checked it previously because I don't want any of this information to be shown in the view or in the dashboard.

             

            • 3. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
              evan.pickett

              I created a new workbook in Tableau 10.3.2, re-created the data source from our internal MySQL database (but didn't full recreate the viz), and now it works:

               

               

              The dashboard I was working with was originally created in... 2013, with whatever version of Tableau was around then. It's been updated to 10.3.2, but I wonder if something in the file's XML innards messed with VizAlerts. This does mean I may have to re-create every viz in 10.3.2, but... c'est la.

               

              Edit: spoke too soon. The "nulls" pop up when the VizAlertsDemo data source is closed, per step 6 of the "Build Your Own" worksheet. Is that step accurate, or do the VizAlerts data sources need to remain in the Tableau workbook in order for VizAlerts to work?

              • 4. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                Matt Coles

                Ah, glad to hear it! I wondered if they were NULL as well, but the calcs were so simple that it seemed unlikely. No, the Tableau product version should not have anything to do with what VizAlerts is doing.

                 

                VizAlerts doesn't care where your data comes from. All it cares about are the fields in your viz data that match what its looking for. So you do not need any official VizAlerts data source in your workbook, you only need appropriately named fields from somewhere, on your viz.

                 

                The VizAlertsDemo workbook, on steps 3 and 4 of the "Build your Own" sheet, instruct the user to copy fields from the VizAlerts data source in the demo workbook, then to paste them into your own data source. Those are the fields that you'll then edit, and use in your viz--not the ones from the VizAlerts data source. So when you close the VizAlerts data source, nothing should change. This is all meant as a convenience method so that you don't have to remember all the field names, and so you can use some of the helpful pre-built code in the comments. But you can just as easily create your own fields named Email Action, Email Subject, etc etc directly in your own data source.

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                • 5. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                  evan.pickett

                  The info in the "Email *" fields shows up when it in the VizAlerts data source; it goes to "Null" when it is in the MySQL data source.

                   

                   

                  I am trying to work through the "Build Your Own" tutorial.

                  • 6. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                    Matt Coles

                    Let's focus on Email Subject. The calc is:

                     

                    'Daily Operations Dashboard for' + STR(TODAY())
                    

                     

                    So there is a static string, and you're appending the string-ified version of today's date to the end. Under no circumstances should that show as NULL. It should show nearly the same text as the Email Header. So first, please double-check that the Email Subject field is in fact showing that as the calc, and that nothing else is added to it. The instant you add a field from your data, you introduce the possibility of a NULL value wiping out your whole string. If you've since added a field from your data, wrap it in IFNULL([yourfield], '') to substitute any NULLs for an empty string.

                     

                    If you hadn't done anything to change your field beyond tacking the date onto a static string, then alter it so it's just a static string again. Is it still showing as NULL? Force the dashboard to refresh. Still NULL? If so, then that's the wackiest thing I've ever seen, and I'd have to start to wonder if your workbook is truly messed up.

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                    • 7. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                      evan.pickett

                      My current vote is for Wacky.

                       

                      Here's the text of the cut-and-pasted ' Email Subject' (I included your leading space!). This shows up as null. I cut and pasted your text from your post a moment ago.

                       

                      If I create a new calculated field from scratch, and type out the same text, and give it a similar name, it shows up:

                       

                      I'm suspicious of illegal text characters. If I cut and paste what you posted, above, I get null again:

                       

                      Here's a really wacky bit: if I delete the original, pasted-from-VizAlertsDemo ' Email Subject' pill from the Viz, 3rd Email Subject is no longer null:

                       

                      I promise that I am not messing with you. At this point, if you were suspicious of me, I think that would be fair!

                       

                      This is a brand-new, created-this-morning workbook, Tableau 10.3.2, not yet published to Tableau Server.

                      • 8. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                        Matt Coles

                        The last idea I have is that you are inadvertantly blending the VizAlerts data source with the data source you actually want to use in your alert. If you are dragging pills onto the Build Your Own sheet from your real data source, you'd be blending at that point, which could result in NULLs. Best way to make sure you're not doing this would be to delete the VizAlerts data source altogether, which would ensure that you are not blending anything. You could also create a brand new sheet in the same workbook, then make sure you've clicked your real data source before dragging any fields out from it.

                        1 of 1 people found this helpful
                        • 9. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                          evan.pickett

                          Hi Matt,

                          That's possible, but I'm not really sure how to check on it. Even with the VizAlertsDemo data source closed, the pills that originated from that data source still report as null. If I create new calculations/dimensions/VizAlert fields from scratch (and just type out exactly what you have), it works fine, and the VizAlerts email works fine, too.

                           

                          I am guessing that there might be some font encoding issue or invisible character or SOMEthing that isn't visible. I checked the text value (C&P into Sublime Text), and nothing showed up there. So, no solution to this particular issue for now, but I do have VizAlerts up and running. (And it looks like I do _not_ need to recreate workbooks, although we'll wait and see until I've uploaded the next five...)

                           

                          Thanks,

                          Evan

                          • 10. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                            Matt Coles

                            Well, bummer. I suppose it could be a weird conversion bug copying a field from an old, 9.0 workbook to a new 10.3 workbook (though it still begs the question why it works for me!). But yes, at least it's working for you, I'm glad of that.

                            • 11. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                              evan.pickett

                              After all that, Outlook/Office365 now gives an error saying that I'm not allowed to email my own mailing lists from my email address. This may be outside the scope of Tableau's responsibility, but is there a way to address this?

                               

                              Irritatingly, emailing these mailing lists directly was the entire point of this exercise; rather than managing Tableau Server subscriptions, the dashboards could just point to the Office 365 group email addresses, and a VizAlert scheduled email would go out per usual. That lets the Office 365 group be the "single source of truth" for dashboard distribution.

                               

                              I had previously distributed these dashboards by subscribing myself and then having Outlook auto-forward them to groups or mailing lists, but that was really hit and miss (for reasons never understood) and I'd hoped that VizAlerts would be a way around it.

                              • 12. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                                Matt Coles

                                What's the exact error it's sending you? You are your own IT department, so I assume that you have control over the configuration of O365. I suspect it's just a setting change on that end.

                                • 13. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                                  evan.pickett

                                  Hi Matt,

                                   

                                  Here's the error:

                                   

                                  Your message to the Office 365 group Operations@couldn't be delivered.

                                  The group Operations isn't set up to receive messages from [my email].

                                  -The goal was to email Office 365 groups, not hard-coded lists of email addresses, to try to keep to a "single source of truth" (the Office groups).

                                       -I could sidestep this issue by setting up each dashboard to email a different list of users. I'd like to avoid this but it's looking like the most time-efficient step.

                                       -An Outlook distribution list (NOT an Office 365 group, right?) might work.

                                  -I enabled email from external accounts to this group, which allows Tableau Server / VizAlerts to email the group (just tested).

                                  -This also leaves the group susceptible to spam from outside the company.

                                  -I think there's a more elegant solution possible, such as creating a "TableauAlerts@Company.com" user and enabling mail from that user, but I'm not sure how to go about doing that.

                                   

                                  All of the "from" fields in the email trace show my email, not an external or Tableau account.

                                  • 14. Re: Only 'Email Header' and default footer included in VizAlerts email
                                    Matt Coles

                                    Okay, so in my research I found this: Planner group email address blocks external emails - Microsoft Tech Community , and checking the box below is what it sounds like you did? And that worked?

                                     

                                    O365-Group-Settings.jpg

                                     

                                    But the concern is now that anyone outside your org can now spam you at Operations@, correct? I don't know much about Office Groups, but I wonder if some of the Powershell commands would let you get more granular with the permissions on it:

                                     

                                     

                                    Set-UnifiedGroup

                                     

                                    In particular, AcceptMessagesOnlyFromSendersOrMembers ?

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