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Reuse question inputs across mutliple macros inside1 workflow


Hi Guys,


I am building a single workflow that combines several macros each with their own configuration of questions.


However there are several common questions between them. eg a common domain name or a regex pattern for treating the same type of data in different dataset or stage.


Is there a way to enter this data once in the first macro and have subsequent macros utilise those params so the user doesnt have to re-answer the same question on 4 different tools within a single workflow.


I know you can do something like this in chained apps but Ive never really done it, and cant see a similar function in macros. 


many thanks in advance



Alteryx Certified Partner
Alteryx Certified Partner

Hi @Dubya 


I think there might be faster solutions, but definitely it would be nice to check a sample of what you're trying to do get the bigger picture.


Anyways, are you trying to make your macros more compact? Because you can always copy and paste tools between workflows. You can also set up a workflow with just the commonly used tools and grab them to use in your macros.




Hey @Thableaus , nice to bump into you again and thanks for responding. I was beginning to feel like I might have posted a bit of tumbleweed.


I'm going around in circles a bit, finding lots of the right kind of functionality but no cigars. Would you indulge my ramblings a bit further and tell me if I'm barking on the below.


I have a big process that we run for each one of a number of customers,

The process is broken down across a number of large linear workflows. ie part 1 runs, and hands off to 2, 2 runs and hands to 3, wait for a bit for another parallel process (4), and then 3 and 4 go into 5 ...etc etc. Hopefully you get the idea.


Each workflow's got its own specific config settings, but given that they're each a part of the same process for a customer, they also share (and duplicate) alot of common config settings for the customer, plus some general 'system' level config settings too. 


I am packaging each of the workflows into their own discrete standard macro tools so I can keep the parts of the process re-usable, upgradeable, and well maintained with enough room for them to retain their individual configurability.


and now I want to put the tools into a parent workflow and join them up, so the whole process can be configured, mastered, run.scheduled from one place. And if we need to set it up again for a new customer, we just copy and reconfig once, as oppsoed to a copying 8 files, and changing 8 sets of constants, questions and tools. Well I dont mind so much at least, but I'll never be able to hand over this process to anyone ever.


Some limitations I've found.

1. Macros dont share seem to share answer between themselves

If you put 5 macros on a canvas, you still have to configure each one. Not an issue so much for the few unqiue settings in each tool, but it means entering in the same client level and system level settings 5 or 6 times. Ive tried levergaing the questions and answers set in a prior tool, but they don't seem to carry into the next where all manner of formulaeic lookups would normally be able to grab them, as they would of they were set in the tools own questions or constants. At least I haven't been abel to make it work anyway.


2. Constants in the main workflow can be accessed by the tools

I figured maybe I'd use constants since they can be accessed by action tools. But when I put my macros on the parent workflow, they cant see or make use of the parent workflow's constants to populate their own various common settings. Ive tried making sure the naming conventions are the same across both the macro tools and the parent but to no avail.


So thats been my week of experimenting and posting tumbleweeds. 


I want to create a configurable master process, and I'm so dissapointed that so many of the incredible functions in Alteryx are falling a hairs breadth short of the mark I need to hit.


Im not sure if I'm lacking in understanding, have missed some functionality, am chasing ghosts or am just miss thinking my method.


Can you steer me clear of the rocks?










Alteryx Certified Partner
Alteryx Certified Partner



How are your questions set up? 


You can generate files with answers to the these questions and share them with your other macros.

Very similar to what is done when you chain an app.

It just depends how you populate these questions. 


If you are worried about generating too many files, you can also create a workflow with Run Command tool to wipe them out.

But I think you can create many shortcuts by doing that, since your flows have an order of execution.