Was this page helpful?
Yes No

Install Tableau Desktop

Note: If you are looking for information about how to install Tableau Server, see the Install and Configure section in the Tableau Server Help instead.

This topic describes how to install and activate Tableau Desktop using the user interface. For information about how to install and activate Tableau Desktop from the command line, see Deploy Tableau Desktop.

To install Tableau Desktop you need the following:

  • The installer for the version you want to install.

  • Your product key. This character string identifies you as a Tableau customer and is required to activate the product. For more information, see Locate your product key.

Don't have a product key? Try the 14-day Free Trial or download the Tableau Desktop Public Edition instead.

Are you a student or a teacher? Go to the Academic programs page to request a license and receive instructions about how to download your copy of Tableau Desktop

Interested in participating in the Tableau Beta program? Go to the Tableau Beta Program page and let them know you are an existing customer who wants to test and provide feedback on new features.

If you are installing Tableau Desktop on a virtual machine, see Tableau Desktop and Non-Persistent Virtual Machines and Activating Tableau Desktop in Citrix.

In this article

Locate your product key

After you purchase Tableau Desktop, Tableau sends you a Welcome email with the information that you need to sign in to the Customer Portal. Your product key is located in the Customer Portal. You need your product key to activate Tableau Desktop after the install process is finished.

If you have trouble signing in to the Customer Portal page, or if you need help retrieving your product key, contact Customer Service and provide your name, company, phone number, and email address.

Follow the steps below to locate your product key so that you have it ready when you get to the activation step.

  1. Sign in to the Customer Portal page on the Tableau website using your email address and password.

  2. Click My Keys.

  3. Copy your product key from the Key Name column in the table. Keep this key ready and secure.

    After Tableau Desktop is installed and activated you can also view the product keys that are used on the computer from the toolbar menu under Help > Manage Product Keys.

Download and install Tableau Desktop

To install Tableau Desktop, complete the following steps.

  1. Download the installer from one of the following locations:

    • For the most current version of Tableau Desktop, go to the Customer Portal page. In the Product Downloads section, click to download the Tableau Desktop installer for the version you need (Windows 64-bit or Mac).

    • For all supported versions of Tableau Desktop, go to the Product Downloads and Release Notes page. Select the product version that you need and then click on the link for the installer (Windows 64-bit or Mac) to download the files.

      For Mac, the Tableau Desktop installer is downloaded to your Downloads folder.

  2. As an Administrator log in to the computer where you are installing Tableau Desktop.

  3. Depending on your operating system, do one of the following:

    • For Windows: Run the installer and follow the prompts.

    • For Mac: Mount and open the Disk Image file (.DMG), and double-click the installer package (.PKG) to start the installation.

      If you are installing Tableau Desktop version 10.1 and earlier on the Mac, you will be prompted to drag the Tableau Desktop icon to your Applications folder.

    Drivers for some data sources are installed automatically when you install Tableau Desktop. See the Database drivers installed with Tableau Desktop section in the Before You Install topic for specifics.

  4. To enable or disable usage reporting complete the following steps for your operating system.

    This option allows us to gather usage pattern data to improve the product. For more information about this option and how to turn it off after installation, see Turn off usage reporting.


    • Select or clear the Improve this product by sharing usage data with Tableau check box.


    • On the Installation Type step, in the bottom-left of the install wizard, click Customize. Then select or clear the Send product usage data check box.

      On the Mac you can also change the settings on this page to customize your install.

  5. (Optional) On Windows, to customize the install, on the Install welcome screen, click Customize and change any of the following options:

    • Install location: Specify a different location to install Tableau Desktop.

      Important: If you specify a custom directory for the install location and plan to install future releases to this same location, you need to specify a version specific sub-folder to install to. Otherwise you will need to uninstall the previous version first. Side-by-side installs of multiple versions in the same sub-directory is not supported.

    • Create a desktop shortcut: Clear the check box if you don't want to automatically create a desktop shortcut for Tableau.

    • Create a Start menu shortcut: Clear the check box if you don't want to automatically add a shortcut for Tableau to the Start menu.

    • Check for Tableau product updates: Clear the check box if you want to disable the product update feature. This feature checks for maintenance updates and installs them automatically. If you disable this option at install it also disables the menu option for users. For more information about the product update feature, see Control Product Updates.

    • Install database drivers: Clear the check box if you don't want to automatically install the database drivers. You can also disable one or more of the drivers from the command line. For more information about this option, see the "Installer properties" section in Deploy Tableau Desktop.

  6. When you're prompted by the setup process, activate Tableau Desktop using the product key that you saved earlier. For information about how to do this automatically from the command line, see the "Installer properties" section in Deploy Tableau Desktop.

    Note: If the computer on which you installed your product doesn't have internet access, or if your network firewall or proxy restricts access to the licensing.tableau.com site, you must use offline activation. See Activate Tableau Desktop in the section below.

If you run into any difficulties, see Troubleshoot Tableau Desktop Installation.

Activate Tableau Desktop

After the installation process is finished, the next step is to register and activate your product. If the computer where you're installing Tableau Desktop has internet access, the installation process walks you through activating the product.

If you're installing Tableau Desktop on a computer that doesn't have internet access, or if your company firewall or proxy restricts access to the licensing.tableau.com site, you must complete some additional steps to activate Tableau Desktop offline.

Important: The Tableau licensing service was moved to a new data center on October 6, 2018. This means that any environments that required special configuration (static IP safe listing for example) to access licensing.tableau.com or licensing.tableausoftware.com will need to be updated. For more information, see Tableau Community.

To complete online and offline activation, you need your Tableau product key which you can get from the Tableau Customer Portal, as described earlier in this article. If you're upgrading versions and you've paid your maintenance since the last time offline activation was completed, contact Tableau Customer Service via email to get an updated product key before continuing with the procedure below.

After you receive a product key from Tableau, do the following:

  1. After the Tableau Desktop installation process is finished, open Tableau. This launches the Tableau registration form where you can register and activate your product.

  2. Fill out the fields on the registration form and then click Activate Tableau.

  3. Delete any existing text in the Activation panel, copy your product key (from the location that you saved it to in the Locate your product key procedure) and paste it into the text box, then click Activate. A second screen appears to complete the activation process. Click Continue to finish the process.

    If Tableau can't connect to the site that authenticates that product key, it can't complete the activation and you must activate the product offline. Complete the remaining steps in this procedure to activate offline.

    Tableau prompts you to save a file that you can use for offline activation.


  4. Click Save.

    Note: If you're performing the offline activation process because of firewall or proxy restrictions, you might not be prompted to save the activation file. In that case, manually disconnect the computer from the network and then restart this procedure so that you can be prompted to save the activation file.

  5. Save the file to a location that you can reach from a computer that does have internet access. Use the default file name (offline.tlq).

  6. Click Exit.

  7. From a computer that has internet access, open a web browser and go to the Activation page on the Tableau website.

  8. Complete the instructions for Offline Activation to submit your offline.tlq file and create a activation.tlf file.

  9. Save the activation.tlf file and then copy it to the computer where you installed Tableau Desktop.

  10. On the offline computer, double-click the activation.tlf file to perform the offline activation.

(Back to top)