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alteryx server Ideas

Share your Server product ideas - we're listening!

Make Scheduler Time Zone Aware

In larger organizations or organizations with global coverage, it is possible for users to be in different time zones from each other and the Alteryx server. 

 

WIth our implementation of Alteryx server, we have the server time zone set to that of our data warehouse, but this time zone is different than my own by -2 hours. In the case of scheduling a workflow in the future, I normally correct for this by setting the scheule in the time zone of the server and things work alright. 

 

 

Problem 1:

It falls apart is when I want to schedule something in the future, but it is within the timespan between my time zone and the server time zone. For example: It is 6PM my time, and 4PM server time. I want to schedule a workflow to run at 5PM server time (7PM my time). When I try to set this up with the Version 10 scheduler built into Alteryx desktop, it overides the date field upon saving to run the following day instead of today as it thinks im trying to schedule the run at a time that has already passed (which it has in my timezone, but not in the server time zone). Upon trying to edit this schedule to reset the date to today, it again reverts upon saving.  

 

The only way I have found to get around this is to reset the time zone of my computer to match the server time zone, then set the schedule, then reset the time zone of my machine back to local time again. This is not the best experience, and will likely be required more frequently for users as their time zone difference increases. 

 

Problem 2:

When wanting to run something server side immediately (I do this in cases where the runtime will be long, or im mobile and on a machine with a lower amount of processing resources) the "Once" option can be used in scheduler to push something to server and run it. In my case, due to the timezone difference, the default time set when trying to do this is the current time in my time zone, but 2 hours ahead of the current server time.

 

 

I have two proposed resolutions:

1) Transmit Server time zone information to the local scheduler to have everything involving scheduling in Server time. Also for any timestamp fields, include the time zone designation so its clear to the user.

2) Use information from the user's machine and information from the server to do timezone conversions behind the scenes so whenever scheduling or viewing schedules, all timestamps are in local time to the user. I feel this is the prefered solution for the best user experience, but would also be the more complex to implement. 

 

 

Thanks,

Ryan

16 Comments
Alteryx Alumni (Retired)
Status changed to: Under Review

Hey Ryan,

Thank you for the feedback! We are looking at improvements to our scheduler functionality, and better management of displayed time is definitely on that list. As we get to this, we'll be looking at going towards an option inline with your proposed solution #2, barring any unforeseen major complications or reasons not to.

Atom

Adding some indication of the server timezone would be tremendously useful. 

Meteoroid
I agree that that showing the time zone on the "Schedule" view is needed. I also notice that the "Results" view that shows when the workflow actually ran shows the result in my local time zone. So the "Schedule" view and the "Results" view are not showing the same time when the server is located in a different time zone. These two views should be coordinated. At the very least show the time with the time zone on each view.
Alteryx Alumni (Retired)
Status changed to: Accepted

@rdoptis@BARTONCONNIE, and @RonL - thank you for all of your thoughts on this.  I'm marking this post as "On the Roadmap" as we are looking at making Scheduling enhancements in the Gallery during the course of 2018 and gracefully handling time zones is on the list.  Thanks again for all of your input!

Asteroid

Today, which is the first time I ever scheduled a workflow, I hit this problem. My time zone is GMT, but the server I am using is GMT-6hrs. I'm only playing/learning, so no problem. Better I learned about this now than when setting up some business-critical schedule!

 

 

It would be even better if we could add time zones + indicator whether we need the schedule to be updated based on Daylight Saving as well. We have seen instances where scheduled reports need to be manually re-adjusted when the daylight saving starts/stops.
Nebula
Nebula

This issue has one more complexity - the start time on the job is listed in the timezone of the controller.    The finish time is listed in the timezone of the worker.    Given that we've got worker nodes in different timezones for BCP reasons - this creates the situation where some of our jobs finish several hours before they start (according to the logs).

 

Agree with this full thread - TimeZones are key.

Meteor

Since this was originally posted in October 2015, has this been addressed yet?  

Meteoroid
Please fix!

Ditto, please fix!