The Tableau Server 9 admin views are a massive improvement on those of Tableau 8 and Tableau have also made the Tableau Server admin view workbook publically available:, which, in case it disappears for some reason, I have also attached it to the bottom of this post.


Previously I wrote a post about creating your own Tableau Server admin views which were based on my need to monitor report usage. Even with the release of the enhanced Tableau admin views I still prefer to keep my own view for usage statistics.

I use the Tableau Server admin views for monitoring the background tasks, whenever I’m in an ‘extract heavy’ environment it’s very important to keep an eye on how the Tableau extracts are updating. I’m not a huge fan of the changes made to the Background Tasks view but as Tableau have made the workbook public it’s very straightforward to modify the view ‘Background Tasks for Extracts’ to give me more visibility into the extract processes.


One thing that is now missing is the ability to visualise the time the extract actually started to refresh – with Tableau Server 9 it has been altered to show the time the extract refresh was kicked off rather than actually started to execute. A few minor tweaks and the ‘Background Tasks for Extracts’ can be altered to include both the kick off time and the start time.


1. Go to the worksheet ‘What Extracts Have Run in the past 24 hours?’ in the ‘Background Tasks for Extracts’ dashboard.

2. Drag the dimension [started_at_local] to the columns shelf, on top of the existing [created_at_local]. Make sure it’s set to Exact Date and Continuous.

3. The size of the gantt bar also needs to be altered by editing the measure [runtime_sec_gant]. The formula should be: datediff(‘second’,[started_at_local],[completed_at_local_nonull])/(60 * 60 * 24). All you need do is replace the field [created_at_local] with [started_at_local].

4. Now the kick off time ([created_at_local]) has gone from the view, I still want to see it so will bring it back in the form of a reference line. Drag the dimension [created_at_local] to the ‘All’ Marks Detail shelf setting it to Exact Date and Continuous

5. Right click on the X axis to add a Reference Line and select the value [created_at_local]. This should be a Line – Per Pane reference line. Personally I remove the label and also remove the fill. Leaving it at the default Minimum is fine.


Once complete the worksheet should now look something like this, with the affected fields crudely circled:

Tableau Background Tasks

The original file is zipped up here: Server Admin Views 9.0.twb