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Engine Works

Under the hood of Alteryx: tips, tricks and how-tos.

It it with great pleasure that I can announce the next release of the CReW macro pack.


It is available for download now at
Or for anyone still on 9.5


It has been a long time coming I know, but I hope you enjoy the new content.  I'm pleased to say this pack has three new contributors from the community, something which I hope we can continue with future releases.


Installation Instructions


  1. Download the zip file above
  2. Extract it to a location on your machine where you want to keep the macros.  (Not in the Program Files/Alteryx folder or an existing Macros folder)
  3. Run Install.yxwz


Community Supported

These macros are not an official Alteryx release and as such they have not been through the full testing process that tools in the product have.  Some of them are prototypes and experimental, but that is some of what makes them so fun.  


If you find an issue let me know either in the comments below or drop me personally a note and I'll take a look, or if you can see how to fix it yourself then even better!


What's New?


New Macros


WildXLSX.pngWildcard XLSX Input - This macro was contributed by Joe Mako (@Joe_Mako) and came from a discussion on this community post.  Ever wanted to read in multiple XLXS files and worksheets?  Then this is the macro for you!  (This is the only macro in the pack which is currently missing from the 9.5 version as it makes use of 10.0 features)


Description - "Reads in multiple sheets from multiple Excel files from a directory. Optionally can filter out sheets, can pull field names from a header row, can auto configure field types, can sample N random sheets, and if the headers do not match then raw data for the sheets that did not match will be in the 'N' output."






ChiSquareTest.pngChi Square Test - Our second new macro author this month, this one is from Mark Frisch (@MarqueeCrew) another very active member of the new community site.


Description - "Have you created a sample set and wanted to know if there was a bias in the sample?  Random doesn't always mean you get an even quantity of data across your variables.  This test will check to see if the distribution of domain values (for a specific variable) are representative of the parent population.


Best to double check your samples before you run your tests!"






Moving Summarize - This is a macro I wrote almost a year ago now and featured on this blog here.  But it really has been that long since the last macro pack release!


Description - "Calculate moving averages or any type of moving summarize"







Trim Mean - This macro was written by me and was inspired from the recent Alteryx roadshow in London, with a user requesting this functionality which is available in Excel.


Description - "Returns the mean of the interior of a data set. Trim Mean calculates the mean taken by excluding a percentage of data points from the top and bottom tails of a data set. You can use this macro when you wish to exclude outlying data from your analysis."






Bug Fixes


Missing Tool quick descriptions - A big thanks to David Zurbuchen (@zurbo) for both spotting these were missing, but better still taking the time and effort to fix them.  A great example of how you can contribute to the macro pack with small but important fixes.


Runner Macro fixes - There were a number of issues with the runner macros in the first release of them.  Many thanks to all of the people who both reported them and spent time with me helping to work out exactly what it was that caused them.  There is one outstanding issue that I know of which involves uni-code characters in the module path.


Add Totals Macro - Now works when there are spaces in the field names.


Get Involved


I want to thank again the contributions from Joe, Mark and David.  You guys have given me the motivation to get this going again.


And on that note I want to encourage anyone else who is interested in getting involved to get in touch either in the comments here or via email.  I really want to make this a community effort and try and make the releases a bit more regular.  There is plenty to do on the existing macros, samples, help files and I also want to try and make some more progress on my Test Suite macros.


Till next time.

Adam Riley
Principal Software Engineer, Tech Lead Core Engines

Adam Riley is a Principal Software Engineer and the Tech Lead of the Core Engines Team at Alteryx. He started on his Alteryx journey as an Alteryx user before joining the company in 2011. He writes a personal blog about Alteryx at www.ChaosReignsWithin.com and is the former curator of the Crew Macro Pack.

Adam Riley is a Principal Software Engineer and the Tech Lead of the Core Engines Team at Alteryx. He started on his Alteryx journey as an Alteryx user before joining the company in 2011. He writes a personal blog about Alteryx at www.ChaosReignsWithin.com and is the former curator of the Crew Macro Pack.

5 - Atom

Hi AdamR!


We recently discovered your blog "Chaos Reigns Within" and went ahead to download the zip file, unpacked it, and have been using the modules. I'm encountering some errors when I run the "Runner" tool though and can't seem to get my workflows to run automatically as I thought they would. I've created several different workflows to try and remedy the problem, however, my final output is just the module status and message type in a table. I'm not actually seeing the result from my workflows being run consecutively, as I would if I were to manually click on each. Please see the attached screenshot and let m eknow what I might be doing wrong. I really appreciate your time and any light you might be able to shed on this!



8 - Asteroid

Hey guys

Wildcard XLSX Input is an amazing macro, but I have an issue.
I get this error:

Error: excel file load macro (16): The Control Parameter "Control Parameter (3)" must be mapped to a field.


And another: The sheet name is not contained in the record even though I did not put any words under the sheet name field


Does anybody know how I can solve it?


7 - Meteor

I'm having the same issue with the Wildcard XLSX Input macro.  Was there some Alteryx update that broke this macro?

7 - Meteor

I'm still not sure of the reason why the Wildcard XLSX Input macro stopped working but you can fix it by changing the Wildcard XLSX macro from a standard macro to a batch macro.


Here are the steps in more detail:

  1. Open the Wildcard XLSX input macro
  2. In the canvas workflow tab, change the macro type from 'Standard Macro' to 'Batch Macro'
  3. Save the macro
  4. Now the Wildcard XLSX input macro will have a tab for a control parameter input, even though it's not connected or mapped to anything
  5. In your main workflow, use the Text Input tool to create a single line with a dummy data field and line to the macro, you don't have to map it to anything, just connect it.  This should get things working again.


If anyone is trying to recreate this, I was using Alteryx version 2018.3 and 2018.4.  The issue occurred for me after unchecking 'Field names in data' and attaching browse tools to each output.