XML Reader

Hi all,

I was trying to use the XML Reader node to read a Tableau workbook (.twb). When writting again the file with XML Writer, I found that Tableau was unable to open it and it was not working, even with no modification between the read and the writing. Exploring the XML code processed by the XML Reader node I realized it was slightly different from the raw version I see when I open the twb file with the notepad. The only discrepancy I noticed is that the XML Reader node was changing the empty tags by a start-tag and an end-tag. For example, “<WindowsPersistSimpleIdentifiers />” is replaced by “<WindowsPersistSimpleIdentifiers> </WindowsPersistSimpleIdentifiers>”. I assume this may be causing the problem when trying to open again with Tableau.

It would be great if someone that has faced this could help me, or if someone knows if the settings for the XML Reader can be somehow changed to not automatically manipulate these tags, as I haven’t been able to find the way.

Thanks in advance

Hi @Jordi_Montane -

Welcome to the forum and thanks for posting. I can reproduce your issue, although it’s not clear to me why it’s happening. I’ve tried several different approaches for reading in the Tableau file and parsing the XML, and all of them produce the same result you describe above.

Let me ask internally and see if I can find out more.

Hi @Jordi_Montane -

Can you elaborate a little bit more on what you’re trying to do here?

Are you by chance trying to publish .twb files directly to a Tableau server using KNIME to orchestrate? (If that’s your use case, we may already have a workflow that could help.)

But even if it’s not that, a bit more information might help to come up with a workaround while our developers investigate the issue.

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A bit more info on this after checking with the developers…

KNIME is using a standard XML writer that comes as part of Java. It has the quote character for XML attributes hard-coded, and there apparently isn’t any option to change that. That said, KNIME writes valid XML documents, and it’s not clear to us why Tableau doesn’t accept this format. (Sorry, I know that’s not a very satisfying answer.)

In the future we will be updating the XML Reader node to address some other items, so if there’s a different Java library out there that supports both single and double quotes in export, we can see about integrating it.


Hi @ScottF,

Thanks for your efforts on this and sorry for my late response.

What we were trying was to apply some generic and pretty simple changes to a set of Tableau workbooks we may have in a project, e. g. changing some alias, only replacing some words without adding or removing lines in the XML. Our idea was to systematize the process with KNIME, not necessarily publishing the workbooks after the changes, as we may need to do other “manual” modifications on some of those Tableau workbooks.

If there isn’t any option to change the XML attributes I don’t think we have a way to complete what we had in mind, at least by now as our processed workbooks keep to break down. We searched for more differences that may cause the .xwb files not to work, this is what we catched:

  • Single quotes are been transformed in doble quotes along all the XML
  • Some characters are been translated by the node. “&apos;” is been translated to single quotes, that added to the previous point, makes some lines to have both single and double quotes, and these lines are aimed by Tableau as the wrong ones.
  • Some other characters as “&#13;” or “&#10;” are translated as well

Maybe this can help to discover why the Tableau workbooks are not valid -in our case- after being processed by the XML Reader node.



Hello everyone,

I was trying to export an XML to a TWB (Tableau Desktop) using KNIME today and couldn’t manage to do it, and happened to find this forum topic. That’s a bummer this is not possible to do, even by just reading the XML and exporting right away. Tableau had no issue reading files exported from Alteryx in the past (doing the same thing, light editing of the XML then exporting).

Has anyone found a solution ? Is there any possibility we can add more options to the XML Writer to get rid of the double quotes etc. or to the Reader to keep the original formatting ?

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