Publish Google Sheets-Connected Dashboards in Tableau Server

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Google Sheets Tableau Connector

The fastest and easiest way to connect Tableau to Google Sheets data. Includes comprehensive high-performance data access, real-time integration, extensive metadata discovery, and robust SQL-92 support.



Use the CData Tableau Connector for Google Sheets and Tableau Server to visualize live Google Sheets data.

Tableau Server is a visual analytics platform transforming the way businesses use data to solve problems. When paired with the CData Tableau Connector for Google Sheets, you get access to live Google Sheets data within Tableau Server. This article shows how to connect to Google Sheets in Tableau Desktop, publish a Data Source to Tableau Server, and build a simple chart on that data.

The CData Tableau Connectors enable high-speed access to live Google Sheets data in Tableau Server. Once you install the connector, you simply authenticate with Google Sheets and you can immediately start building responsive, dynamic visualizations and dashboards. By surfacing Google Sheets data using native Tableau data types and handling complex filters, aggregations, & other operations automatically, CData Tableau Connectors grant seamless access to Google Sheets data.

NOTE: The CData Tableau Connectors require Tableau 2020.3 or higher. If you are using an older version of Tableau, you will need to use the CData JDBC Driver for Google Sheets. If you wish to connect to Google Sheets data in Tableau Online, you will need to use CData CloudHub.

Enable Connectivity to Google Sheets in Tableau Server

Start by installing the CData Tableau Connector on the machine hosting Tableau Server and on a machine with Tableau Desktop.

  1. On the server machine, copy cdata.googlesheets.taco and cdata.tableau.googlesheets.lic (typically found in C:\Program Files\CData\CData Tableau Connector for Google Sheets\lib\
  2. Place the copies in the Tableau Server Connectors folder (C:\ProgramData\Tableau\Tableau Server\data absvc\vizqlserver\Connectors)
  3. Restart Tableau Server

Connect to Google Sheets in Tableau Desktop

Once the connectors are installed on the Server machine, we can configure a connection to Google Sheets in Tableau Desktop and publish a Google Sheets-based Data Source to Tableau Server.

  1. Open Tableau Desktop
  2. Click More under Connect -> To a Server
  3. Select "Google Sheets by CData"
  4. Configure the connection and click "Sign In."

You can connect to a spreadsheet by providing authentication to Google and then setting the Spreadsheet connection property to the name or feed link of the spreadsheet. If you want to view a list of information about the spreadsheets in your Google Drive, execute a query to the Spreadsheets view after you authenticate.

ClientLogin (username/password authentication) has been officially deprecated since April 20, 2012 and is now no longer available. Instead, use the OAuth 2.0 authentication standard. To access Google APIs on behalf on individual users, you can use the embedded credentials or you can register your own OAuth app.

OAuth also enables you to use a service account to connect on behalf of users in a Google Apps domain. To authenticate with a service account, you will need to register an application to obtain the OAuth JWT values.

See the Getting Started chapter in the help documentation to connect to Google Sheets from different types of accounts: Google accounts, Google Apps accounts, and accounts using two-step verification.

Discover Schemas and Query Data

Once you establish the connection to Google Sheets data, you can configure which entities to visualize.

  1. Select CData from the Database pull-down menu.
  2. Select GoogleSheets from the Schema pull-down menu.
  3. Drag the tables and views you wish to visualize onto the join area. You can include multiple tables.
  4. Select Update Now or Automatically Update. Update Now lets you preview the first 10,000 rows of the data source (or enter the number of rows you want to see in the Rows text box). Automatically Update auto-loads the changes in the preview area.

Publish Data to Tableau Server

After you configure the data you wish to visualize, you can publish the Data Source to a Tableau Server instance. In Tableau Desktop:

  1. Click Server -> Sign In
  2. Enter the URL for your Tableau Server
  3. Authenticate with Tableau Server credentials
  4. Click Server -> Publish Data Source and select your data source
  5. Click Publish
  6. Select the Project, name the Data Source, and optionally add a description
  7. Click Publish

Visualize Google Sheets Data in Tableau Server

With the Data Source published to Tableau Server, you are ready to visualize Google Sheets data.

  1. Login to your Tableau Server instance
  2. Select the Project where you published the Data Source
  3. Click the published Data Source
  4. Click New Workbook
  5. In the workbook, Google Sheets fields are listed as Dimensions and Measures, depending on the data type. The CData Tableau Connector discovers data types automatically, allowing you to leverage the powerful data processing and visualization features of Tableau.
  6. Drag a field from the Dimensions or Measures area to Rows or Columns. Tableau creates column or row headers.
  7. Select one of the chart types from the Show Me tab. Tableau displays the chart type that you selected.

Using the CData Tableau Connector for Google Sheets with Tableau Server, you can easily create robust visualizations and reports on Google Sheets data. Download a free, 30-day trial and get started today.