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Alteryx designer Discussions

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Viewing Underlying Code of Workflow

Asteroid

Hello Alteryx Community! 

 

I'm wondering if there is any way to view the underlying code behind a workflow. I found some resources for viewing underlying R-code, but can this be done for an entire workflow that does not include R tools? 

 

Thank you in advance! 

Alteryx Certified Partner

If you're referring to the XML code, there's a couple of ways:

 

- In Alteryx Designer: Options > User Settings > Edit User Settings > Advanced > Display XML in Properties Window. This will allow you to view the XML code of individual tools and the entire workflow as you work in Alteryx designer.

- Alteryx Designer workflows (.yxmd/.yxmc/.yxwz/.bak) can also be opened in text editing programs (like Notepad++). This will allow you to view the same XML code in another program. 

Asteroid

Thank you!! Just curious, could you also use the XML window to code a workflow instead of dragging and dropping tools? (Not that anyone would want to :)) Or, could you add annotations in plain English to each line of code? 

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Alteryx Certified Partner

Yes, but it gets very complex to edit tools and their connections. That being said, XML editing is very handy if you want to edit formula contents, or update dependency/file paths..

 

You can open workflows in Alteryx Designer by inputting them as a text file (set delimiter \0). This would allow you parse/edit the workflow contents within Alteryx Designer. Combine this knowledge with the likes of the Directory Input and Dynamic Input tools and I've edited hundred of workflows in a matter of minutes. 

That's fantastic. It really sparks my thinking about whether they'll be able to bring in a Diff functionality in order to have effective Version Control over workflows... as pondered here and hacked together here.

 

There is a platform for bioinformatics researchers that does very effective diff-based version control of underlying XML code, in exactly this way. Worth checking it out here.

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