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What is a Site?

You might be used to using the term site to mean "a collection of connected computers," or perhaps as the short form of "website." But in Tableau-speak, we use site to mean a collection of content (workbooks, data sources, users, etc) that's walled off from any other content on that instance of Tableau Server. (Another way to say this is that Tableau Server supports multitenancy by allowing server administrators to create multiple sites on the server for different sets of users and content.)

Each site has its own URL and its own set of users, and each site has completely segregated content, projects, and data sources. You can set permissions per user or group on a project, workbook, view, or data source. All server content is published, accessed, managed, and controlled on a per-site basis.

What is a site administrator?

A site administrator is in charge of creating and maintaining the framework on Tableau Server that enables Tableau Desktop users in the organization to publish, share, manage, and connect to data sources and workbooks. Their duties can include creating and managing users and groups, creating projects to organize content on the site, assigning permissions to allow users to access the content they need, scheduling extract refreshes, and a few other tasks.

Site administrators and server administrators

In addition to a site administrator, there's also a server administrator. The server administrator sets up Tableau Server—they install and upgrade it, configure the services that run on Tableau Server, back it up, and perform other tasks that pertain to running Tableau Server as a whole. Server administrators also create sites as needed. (Site administrators don't have permissions to create sites.)

In some organizations, the same person might be both a server administrator and the site administrator for one or more sites. Even so, the tasks performed by a site administrator and a server administrator are distinct.

About this guide

This guide tells you, a site administrator, how to plan, create, and manage sites on an instance of Tableau Server. Note the following:

  • We don't cover the duties of a server administrator. We have a separate guide that covers those tasks.

  • We don't discuss how to publish content to the server. Users do this from Tableau Desktop. However, we do discuss how to set up users on the site and give them permissions to publish and view the content that they need. For information about how to publish to Tableau Server, see Publish Data Sources and Workbooks in the Tableau Desktop documentation.