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Alteryx Designer Ideas

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Add DateTime type with milliseconds

I work with data where milliseconds is my saviour when I count distinct the datetime to get number of events. Alteryx ignores the millisecond part (as lots of other BI tool providers - I don't know what is going on with this idea that milliseconds are not needed). Yes I can convert it to string but it's not the best practice to create duplicate fields just so that I have date part for date-related calculation (plotting, time difference) and on the other hand string value for quick and easy counting..

56 Comments
barnese
7 - Meteor

hi @TonyaS - just wondering if there was an update on this? I have been missing using milliseconds since first becoming an Alteryx user in 2018.  It is preventing me from fully automating my flows because I have to calculate a duration column in csv before uploading to Alteryx.  I would love to directly connect to the DB and have my reports.  I tried clicking the link you provided in this thread but it seems to bring me back to this same thread, I don't see any work arounds, just a lot of requests.  Any help on how to keep the milliseconds would be extremely helpful!

KylieF
Alteryx Community Team
Alteryx Community Team
Status changed to: Under Review

Hello!

 

I wanted to provide an update on this idea that our product team is currently reevaluating this idea and researching into the best methods of potentially implementing this feature into the engine without creating unintended side effects should we be able to include this functionality on the roadmap. We appreciate your patience while we conduct this research as this can take some time.

TonyaS
Alteryx
Alteryx

Thank you Kylie and I apologize for not replying sooner.

 

Yes, we are considering this for our Roadmap intake we just don't have a definite update as to the timing right now. Once we know which Release it will be in I will definitely update everyone on this thread. We appreciate all the interest that this idea has received. 

MJ
8 - Asteroid

Friendly reminder we still need this.  I need it to track RPA activity and API logs

TonyaS
Alteryx
Alteryx

Hello all, 

 

We are definitely aware of this and weighing it along with other priorities on our Roadmap. I see that it has 54 likes and the number of likes is definitely one data point that is used to determine priority. 

 

Thanks for continuing to remind us about this one. 

 

Iggles
6 - Meteoroid

+1

 

It seems crazy that milliseconds aren't supported, especially given the length of time people have been asking for it.

Biswarun
8 - Asteroid

About six years have elapsed and I guess, this is still being "weighed".

TonyaS
Alteryx
Alteryx
Status changed to: Accepted

This is an Accepted idea and we have it on our Roadmap for an upcoming Release in 2023. 

We are actively designing it and I will update the status to Ongoing once work hast started on it. Thank you all for your enthusiastic comments and support for this very popular idea! 


ChrisK
Alteryx
Alteryx

As we consider this, it would be helpful to know how you want to use it:

  1. Do you need formula functions? Which ones?
  2. Do you need to read / write these with files? Which file types?
  3. Do you need to read / write these with Databases? Which DB types?
  4. What is the highest precision you might ever need?
Hiblet
9 - Comet

@ChrisK  - This is just my tuppence-worth.  My thinking was that Alteryx would generally handle milliseconds+ in the same way that it supports the current date/time format. 

 

Alteryx should (ideally) be time-capable to the limit of the machine, ie the limit imposed by Windows clock ticks, but I appreciate this may not be practical, but the higher the precision the better.  Probably milliseconds minimum, and anything higher that that is a bonus.

 

The worst case scenario is to be working on time-based data, and hit a point where Alteryx cannot read/write/process the data, but that is where we are now, so any improvement would be good.  Current work-around is to tag on double/float/fixedDecimal and use that to store the sub-second part and calculate with that.

 

1. Functions; Any functions currently processing time now would ideally have an equivalent with precise time.

2. Read/Write files; Very facile to say "all file types", because as a consultant you do not know what the client would give you.  

3. Read/Write databases;  Exactly the same, but here the databases all have their own specialised time types.  MS Transact SQL has two breaks, millisecs and nanosecs.  MySQL goes to microsecs.  Not sure about Oracle. Snowflake is nanosecs.  I guess you would have to go through each type and try to decide the level of precision supported, and the higher the better.

4. Max precision;  Best case nanosecs, and at the very least, millisecs.

 

Time precision does not come up as an issue very often, and there are work-arounds.  However, it is sometimes embarrassing to have to say "Alteryx does not support milliseconds" to someone that is weighing up whether to get a license or not, because it implies that Alteryx is not a serious data processing app (we know it is, but we are trying to convince someone else).  Being able to say that such-and-such precision is supported on whatever persistent formats would really help.  

 

As said, just an opinion, and I appreciate that the job is huge and complex.