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Tableau Frequently Asked Questions

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Q: Can I use my own data sources on Tableau Server?
A: Yes. We are currently studying the impacts on performance and scalability regarding local data sources, and the ability to publish your local data sources will be made available in Phase 3 of the rollout.

Q: Can I control who sees my visualizations on Tableau Server?
A: Yes. Access can be customized to as far down as individuals.

Q: Is there a cost to just view and interact with visualizations?
A: No. Viewing and interacting is free.

Q: Can anyone with a UW Netid access the Tableau Server to see "published" reports?
A: Yes. One just needs access to the Enterprise Data Warehouse (EDW) and to Tableau Server (request via Tableau Server Access Form).

Q: Can I share my Tableau Desktop license with others?
A: No. Licenses are granted to individuals, based on UW NetIDs.

Q: What does it cost to install my own server?
A: This is highly discouraged as the barrier to entry is high in terms of costs and resources, and the current server is set up to leverage UW’s infrastructure. For reference, the entry point for configuring the minimal hardware and software platform that can share data across UW is $200,000. This excludes UW staffing to manage it and annual Tableau maintenance and renewal fees.

Q: If I don’t want to pay for the annual renewal, may I still publish on Tableau Server?
A: No. Because Tableau Desktop is not forward compatible, in order to maintain publishing rights on Tableau Server you must pay for the annual renewal. If you choose to opt out, you still own your Tableau Desktop license, but will no longer receive support, upgrades, or the ability to publish on UW’s Tableau Server.

Q: How soon can I get my Tableau Desktop License?
A: Typically within 1-2 business days.

Q: Can a license be transfered?
A: Yes, licenses can be transfered from one employee to another. Send your request to