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Before You Install

This article describes common information that you need to know before you install Tableau Desktop for yourself or for others in your organization.

In this article

Available versions of Tableau Desktop

Tableau Desktop is available for purchase in these editions:

  • Tableau Desktop Professional Edition connects to an extensive set of data sources and servers. This version supports publishing to Tableau Public, Tableau Server, and Tableau Online.

  • Tableau Desktop Personal Edition connects to a limited set of data sources. It supports publishing to your company's network and to Tableau Public.

When you purchase either of these editions of Tableau Desktop, you receive a welcome email that provides the information that you need to download and install the software.

There is also a third edition, Tableau Desktop Public Edition, that's offered free of charge. You can use this version to publish visualizations to Tableau Public, and then share them via social media, or embed them on a site or in a blog. You can download Tableau Desktop Public Edition from the Tableau Public download page.

System requirements

You can install Tableau Desktop on a Windows computer or a Mac computer. For information about which versions of Windows or Mac are supported, or about memory or disk space requirements, see the system requirements listed at the bottom of the Technical Specifications page for Tableau Desktop on the Tableau website.

Compatibility with Tableau Server and Tableau Online

You can run into file compatibility issues when you try to share files between different versions of Tableau Desktop and Tableau Server, Tableau Desktop and Tableau Online, or between different versions of Tableau Desktop. For the complete story on compatibility between versions of Tableau Desktop and with Tableau Server or Tableau Online, see the Make Workbooks Compatible Between Versions or Version Compatibility with Tableau Online in this guide.

Network access

To use features like maps and licensing, Tableau needs an internet connection. Your network administrator might need to configure firewall and proxy settings. For details, see Internet Access Requirements in this guide.

Database drivers

Tableau uses connectors to connect to different databases, and some connectors require drivers to talk to these databases. When it comes to drivers, the easiest approach is to install Tableau Desktop and then try connecting to the data. Tableau installs some drivers by default (details below), and some data sources don't require a driver. If you do need to install a driver for your connection, Tableau lets you know the first time you try to connect by displaying a dialog box like the following:

If this error appears, click the link in the error message to go to the Driver Download page on the Tableau website. Follow the instructions for your connector to get the driver you need.

For more information about the different connectors that Tableau Desktop supports, see Connector Examples in the online help.

Database drivers installed with Tableau Desktop

When you install Tableau Desktop on a Windows computer, drivers for the following data source types are automatically installed:

  • Amazon Redshift (version 1.3.7)

    Note: If this driver is already installed, the install process skips this driver.

  • Microsoft SQL Server (13.0.811.168 - ODBC Driver 13 for SQL Server)

  • PostgreSQL (version 9.6.2)

When you install Tableau Desktop on a Mac computer, drivers for the following data source types are installed by default:

  • Oracle (version 11.2.0.5)

  • PostgreSQL (version 9.5.3)

  • Simba Spark (version 1.2.5)

  • Simba SQL Server (version 1.3.14)

  • Amazon Redshift (version 1.3.7)

If you prefer that some or all of these drivers not be installed, you can customize the list from the Customize pane in the installation program for Tableau Desktop.

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