Alteryx Designer

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I've just downloaded the latest version, 2020.2.3, which I do like overall. However, I was horrified to see an issue that keeps coming back, I'm hoping this time it doesn't take as long to fix. I'm referring to the Select tool no longer showing the whole (or at least the majority) of the field name...again (this is at least the 3rd time this has come back). It appears you only show the first 6-9 characters making it so I have to hover my mouse over each column to get the full name or drag the field pane out every time I click on a select tool/join tool/spatial match tool/find nearest tool/etc etc.



I suggested in the past each time this has happened before, that you just drop the description field, which you give the most room to by far. I've been using Alteryx since you were SRC (too depressing to count how many years that's old) and I have not once put anything in the description area, does anyone really ever use this area on a consistent basis? Or if you can't drop it, maybe not allocate all the room to it & make it one of the smaller panes, which would allow for the actual field names to have more display room, which then allows your user base to more easily tell what is in the data they just loaded.


This is definitely a step backwards in my mind in design/time efficiency, holding out hope this was an oversight & will be fixed next release (fingers crossed, rabbit foot rubbed, lucky shirt on, donated to charity, & knocked on wood)! Please please please.

The select tool does a great job at flagging up when something has changed from its original state. However why does this not happen with the checkboxes to keep or remove a field? It would be much faster and easier to read if we could have the same color conditional formatting as the rest.




Exactly as the subject says: It would be incredibly useful to be able to change the colour, and possibly the line thickness of the connectors between tools.

We have workflows with huge amounts of stuff going on, as I'm sure many people do.

Being able to colour code the connections between tools would help us to trace things from place to place when stepping through the workflow.

Please add official support for newer versions of Microsoft SQL Server and the related drivers.


According to the data sources article for Microsoft SQL Server (, and validation via a support ticket, only the following products have been tested and validated with Alteryx Designer/Server:


Microsoft SQL Server

Validated On: 2008, 2012, 2014, and 2016.

  • No R versions are mentioned (2008 R2, for instance)
  • SQL Server 2017, which was released in October of 2017, is notably missing from the list.
  • SQL Server 2019, while fairly new (~6 months old), is also missing

This is one of the most popular data sources, and the lack of support for newer versions (especially a 2+ year old product like Sql Server 2017) is hard to fathom.


ODBC Driver for SQL Server/SQL Server Native Client

Validated on ODBC Driver: 11, 13, 13.1

Validated on SQL Server Native Client: 10,11

Today when we install custom tools that use DLLs, the DLLs must be placed in the Plugins folder inside the Alteryx installation directory.  This requires a second step after the YXI installer runs.  I would like to be able to package the DLL with the YXI installer and Alteryx will search for the DLL inside the tool's directory, just the same as what happens with custom Python tools.  This will allow custom tools that use DLLs to be installed just as easily as the 1-step installation process for Python tools.


For example, this today does not work, but I want it to:

Screen Shot 2020-06-05 at 8.35.17 AM.png

At present, Alteryx allows for users to run 2 versions of Alteryx at once - one installed using the "Admin Installer" and one via the "non-admin installer"


However, in corporate environments, only the Admin Installer can be used (all installers are repackaged for corporate environment / endpoint management)


This leads to a situation were we cannot run two or more different versions of Alteryx on one machine (like you can with Visual Studio or other platforms).   This also prevents us from participating in the BETA program because the BETA version would overwrite the users's current version.    Finally - this also makes version upgrades more risky since we cannot run the new version in parallel for a period to evaluate and identify any issues.


Request: Please can you change the installer for Alteryx to default to parallel install per version - so that a user can run 2019.1; 2019.2; and 2019.2 BETA on one machine in a way that is fully isolated (i.e. no shared components - have to be able to uninstall one instance cleanly and leave the others in a fully functional state).


Many thanks




So I just realized that if I click F2 I am brought to the annotation window in the configuration window. 

It would be great if I can click F3 to bring me back to the Configuration window! Often times I switch back between configuring and annotation a tool multiple times. 





Any python user will tell you that one of the reasons why python is so powerful is the ability to access values using their indexes. It would be great if alteryx had such a system in place too, where you can access values or loop over them using their index, which can then be applied in creating new columns or calculations. 


P.S - I know we can use the python tool but I would rather see this ability built in the formula tool.




While Alteryx allows for a proxy username and password in the settings, these are not passed properly to an NTLM proxy. Support for NTLM authentication would be incredibly useful for a number of corporations who utilize this firewall setup.


We currently have to either download via Python or cURL through batch commands called by Alteryx. Since Alteryx uses a cURL back-end, this should be a fairly simple addition to the existing download tool by allowing a selection of proxy server, port, and authentication method in addition to the proxy username and password. This could be done either in the tool itself or in User Settings.

I didn't know I want the Excel "Select a range (cells, rows or columsn" feature before it dropped, but now that we have it, it's time to make it  awesome.


There are two things that really need to improve to make this tool awesome:


1) Allow to fill out only one parameter



The typical use case for this tool should look like this. You have some unnecessary header rows and columns -> the data is shifted.

We want to build a flow that only selects our data columns in the middle, but the length of these columns can change, so it's a BIG NO to select just a range from D4 to G13. Nobody knows if the next report will have the same length. We can't risk to cut-off the last rows.


This is also import for the output feature. We usually don't know if we'll write 10, 20 or hundreds of data rows. To make this feature useable, we really need to be able to specify just one cell. The cell range is a nice on top feature, but it shouldn't be the requirement.


I also see an option for something like D4:G. This would be a syntax with two fields, but the G doesn't need a number and therefore says "till data ends".


In the current state of the tool, it's better to use 'Start data Import on row' + Select tool to achieve the needed behavior. 


2) Improve usability


I see multiple ways to improve the usability of this feature. I will start with the most simple way (for the dev team) and follow up with more complex. The problem is always the same: How do we know the exact position of the cells without opening it?


2.1) Add an additional row on top of the header row


The easiest possible way is to add an row above "Header F2 F3 ..." with A, B, C ...

This really helps to pick the right one.


2.2) "Select tool" inside the preview


I could imagine a feature where we can select the wanted cells and add them to the Query. The best way is probably an auto hover like word has it. See below.


When you select a text and wait a second, it automatically pops up some options to edit the text. Another option would be a simple right click.


2.3) Show Excel Button


Time to step up the quality with an additional button inside the Input Tool. The Show Excel Button opens the Excel file with a temporary window to help you select the right cells.


2.4 Select In Excel Button


This is probably the most advanced solution. Open the file (same as in the step before) and allow to select the ranges directly inside the file and throw the selected range inside the original config windows. It's probably the most difficult solution for the problem, but let me dream for a moment.





Often times when I'm building a workflow I categorize and bucket my tools into different containers.

It would be awesome if I could copy and paste the format of one container tool to another - that is the color, the size (e.g. none, small, large, etc.). I don't think the title needs to be copied, but if that was included in the feature, well that would be great!


Thanks for the awesomeness you provide!



I love using the YXI installer for distributing custom macros; I have even used to install an entire palette of macros.  However, when installing to a new, user-defined palette, I still need to instruct users to copy custom_palette.png into C:\Program Files\Alteryx\bin\RuntimeData\icons\categories.


It would be nifty keen if we could add custom_palette,png into the config.xml file and have the YXI installer place the file into the \icons\categories directory.


I imagine that some checks would need to be added, to ensure we weren't overwriting icons for the built in palettes.


I would like to have feature to disable the fitter tool so that all the filters added within the filter tool are ignored when the filter tool is disabled and data flows through to the next tool . At this moment there is no way we can achieve this as adding a tool to a container and disabling it stops the data flow to the next tool.

In GIS, spatial data is regularly stored/transmitted as text. With this comes metadata, including the projection used.


Example Issue: When extracting data from ESRI's ArcGIS REST Directories, the projection can be extracted from the information, but must be manually defined in the Make Points Tool. If you are trying to compile data from several different sources, all using different projections, you cannot automate the process. 


Suggested Solution: Add WKT to macro interface configuration options so that an Action Interface Tool can update the Create Points Tool.



JSON extract.png - This is a screenshot of the spatial reference metadata in a JSON formatted query from an ArcGIS REST Directory. 

action tool.png - Current configuration options for Create Points Tool in the Action Interface Tool.

Gallery is useful for sharing workflows or web-based storage. However, if you want to open a set of workflows that are not otherwise linked, but for example are part of a single project, it would be helpful to be able to save it as you might to a folder. Likewise, if you want to add a workflow to a group, you have to open all the workflows and then resave the workflow group.


Suggestion 1: Add an option in the Meta Info Tab of the Configuration window that would allow you to select/create a workflow group to add the workflow to.


Suggestion 2: Allow keyword tagging of workflows with a search option so that similar projects can be searched for and compared easily. This is already available in Server, but would be extremely helpful for small businesses where there might only be a single user, as is my case. ESRI's ArcGIS Online has this tagging capability as a reference.

  • Setup & Configuration

In Designer user settings, you have the option to set a default dataset for the reference base map. This is a fantastic feature when working with spatial objects. My suggestion is that this feature should persist when viewing .yxdb files outside of Designer workflows. 


When I'm browsing a folder of .yxdb files that contain spatial objects, clicking on those files opens a viewing/browse window outside of Designer. Unfortunately, the base reference map setting does not currently transfer and must be reelected each time a file is opened. I would like suggest that this setting persist in this situation. 


In my company, we have our personal account (let's say myorganization\saubert) and, if we have the right to, a LOCAL admin account (eg : .\adminsaubert) to make install of sofware, etc...

So, the license is on my personal account



Now, I want to access the System settings :



And then  I have this very friendly message :



If i click on "OK", it opens the License manager.
If I click on "Cancel", it closes the windows and I'm unable to change my system settings.


I think changing these system settings shouldn't require a license.

Best regards,


Figuring out who is using custom macros and/or governing the macroverse is not an easy task currently.  


I have started shipping Alteryx logs to Splunk to see what could be learned.  One thing that I would love to be able to do is understand which workflows are using a particular macro, or any custom macros for that matter.  As it stands right now, I do not believe there is a simple way to do this by parsing the log entries.  If, instead of just saying 'Tool Id 420', it said 'Tool Id 420 [Macro Name]' that would be very helpful.  And it would be even *better* if the logging could flag out of the box macros vs custom macros.  You could have a system level setting to include/exclude macro names.  


Thanks for listening.



I'd like to see an enhancement that at the install level (through an XML configuration file for example), the use of the From field in the Email reporting tool could be disabled for population by the end user and instead would auto-populate with that current users e-mail address.  Currently users can populate the field with any address on their domain, which is useful, but also poses a risk in that messages can be made to appear to be coming from a party that is not aware of it.  We'd like to be able to control that on install and "turn off" access to the From field

Given the prevalence of XML - it seems that it's worth adding a native XML capability to Alterxy (similar to the discussion with @CharleyMcGee and  @KaneG in the discussion forum).    Currently XML is treated mostly like a big and oddly behaved text field, which really undermines the usefulness of XML in real applications.


What I'm thinking is:

- Add in a component, which acts like a join, but what it does is validates an XML file vs. an XSD file so that you can see if your XML file matches the schema definition.   Tremendously useful if you've ever had to hand-craft XML.

- Add in a native data-type for XML (like you have a data-type for Centroids)

- On this XML data type - you can then do interesting things like walk the document object model, or iterate through all children (which fixes the issue of deeply nested XML being such a pain).     This would bring XML parsing into the level of usefulness that programmers in Java & Visual Studio have enjoyed for years

- Finally - an ability to construct XML data files without having to text-hack this.   i.e. something similar to the transpose tool, where for a given node, you can add children etc.


These four things would really really assist with getting Alteryx to be able to deal with modern data sets like JSON; XML and even web-page scrubbing.


As always - very happy to commit time to helping shape this - please feel free to reach out if that would be useful.


Thank you all


CC: @JoeM@mceleavey@MarqueeCrew@NeilR@Ned@dawid_nawrot@TaraM@GeneR

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