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Alteryx Designer Knowledge Base

Definitive answers from Designer experts.

Connecting to Dropbox and Box.com on your desktop

Alteryx
Alteryx
Created on

Question

Did you know that you can connect to a Dropbox or Box.com account from Alteryx on your desktop?

Answer

As long as your install the desktop client for each service you will be able to read and write to each of the accounts.

 

To download the desktop client for box.com click on your name/username, select “Get Box Sync”, and then click the “Box Sync” download button:

Capture.JPG 

 

To download the desktop client for dropbox click on your name/username, “install”, and then click the “Free Download” button to start your download:

Capture.JPGCapture.JPG

 

You will have to run through the install wizards for each program and one of the processes during install is to choose an installation path. Make sure that you choose a path that you have permissions to both read and write files as this is key to connecting to the services with Alteryx. Once the install has completed and both (or one) of the services are running you should see them active in your “Favorites” section of a windows explorer window as well as on the task bar:

Capture.JPG    

 

If you were to access either of those services in the windows explorer window you will be able to see the install path for each. That install path is what you would use in your input or output tool in order to read and/or write to either Dropbox or Box.com.

 

Dropbox:

 Capture.JPG

 

Box.com:

Capture.JPG

 

In both Dropbox and Box.com I have uploaded a file “AddressData.yxdb” via their respective web interfaces as an example:

 

Dropbox:

Capture.JPG

 

Box.com:

Capture.JPG

 

An input tool can now be used to path to each of the directories on your machine where dropbox and box.com were installed and you will be able to see and read the files into Alteryx:

Capture.JPG

 

You can then do any processing you need to on your file and then write back to each service. Box.com will let you overwrite the file you are reading in as long as you have a Block Until Done tool somewhere between input and output; the file is locked while it is being read. The nice thing about box.com is that they provide version information when you do overwrite an existing file. This version information allows you to download or replace the current version with previous versions:

Capture.JPG

 

Dropbox will allow you to write back to its service, however you cannot overwrite an existing file. Dropbox puts a lock on files being accessed so in order to overwrite or “update” an existing file, you will have to rename the file in the output tool from “AddressData.yxdb” to “AddressData2.yxdb” for example.

Comments
Asteroid

I have BOX sync set up and there are folders in BOX2018-11-06_11-41-14.png sync but Alteryx is unable to access them. The error is access denied.

 

 

Will this link to Box.com still work if you upload a query to the Gallery?  Or will this cache the file like it was a file stored on your local machine?

ACE Emeritus
ACE Emeritus
I am having an issue with accessing our box.com data because our employee IDs are in the file path of the box location. Our team keeps its data out on Box and we share everything related to our team out there. I can create a workflow which pulls data from my box location. If someone else on the team tries to run this workflow, it won't run unless they replace the file path to their employee ID. Location of Alteryx Workflow: C:\Users\e00123456\Box\Workflows\ProjectX\Step1A.yxmd My input: C:\Users\e00123456\Box\Data\ProjectX\DataY\TypeZ\DataFile_2019-08-08.yxdb Their Change C:\Users\e00456789\Box\Data\ProjectX\DataY\TypeZ\DataFile_2019-08-08.yxdb Is there a way so that we don't constantly have to change the input. Is there a way to use a wildcard solution possibly? I am hesitant to use a typical relative file path solution. if I moved the workflow to a new location it could break all the input connections.
Meteor

@pcatterson yes, you have to make the input files relative to the position of the alteryx workflow

 

so basically you would need to save the workflows in box somewhere and then update the inputs accordingly.

 

Your workflow can update them for you automatically by going to:

options > advanced options > workflow dependencies > then press "all relative"

 

You can also do it manually in the input tool

 

After doing so, the location of the workflows will look like this:

clipboard_image_1.png

 

In your example above, you would open workflow Step1A.yxmd, and then follow the steps above, and it will do it for you automatically.

 

Note: before doing it, you need to make sure all the inputs use your employee ID. So whoever makes a workflow and adds a new input to it, will need to make sure that they are the ones who make it relative. if the employee ID is not your own, you cannot use the "all relative" button, you need to figure it out manually and update the input tool accordingly

Atom

I have to write file to Dropbox, i dont see install option in my account, can someone help