Alteryx Designer Ideas

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Retain Source in Union Tool

When bringing data together it is often needed to assign a source to the data.  Generally this happens when you union data and need to know things later about the data for context.  It would save time to generate a source field that is assigned based upon the input connections of the union tool.  Perhaps when unioning data you can assign a name to each input stream?



Alteryx Alumni (Retired)

Not a bad idea! It will be interesting to see how fast this 'percolates' up to our Product team.


In the meantime, something you can do already if you are unioning from different files would be to set the 'Output File Name as Field' in the Input tool. It creates a 'FileName' field that will automatically be part of the union. Granted, this only works with file-based inputs, but depending on what you are doing is a simple solution.

Other than that, I will typically just add a Formula tool on each connection prior to the Union tool and create a consistently-named field with a string constant representing each connection. An extra step, but gives me that important 'source' information.


Thanks for submitting the idea. I just wanted to make sure you were aware of existing methods to get to what you are wanting.  :-)



20 - Arcturus
20 - Arcturus

Yes Rod, the formula tool is generally what I use.  Today I was helping a client with a workflow and after creating 4 formulas (and making sure that the names were the same for the fields) I thought that this an opportunity for an idea to Alteryx.  The filenames option was something that I had considered, but because their names were rather verbose I opted for the formula.


Thanks for your prompt feedback.

Alteryx Alumni (Retired)

Sounds like you already had it covered with the 'existing options'. 

You got my vote/star!  :-)

Alteryx Alumni (Retired)
Status changed to: Revisit

Thank you for the feedback! While this is not approved for the short-term due to competing priorities, we may revisit this in the future.