Catwalk — The Alternative Data Model Viewer

Summary: I introduce “catwalk”, an alternative data model viewer for Qlik Sense from the Qlik oss team.  Don’t like reading?  Go to https://catwalk.core.qlik.com/ and give it a spin. 

I’ve been having a lot of fun with catwalk, a fairly new tool from the Qlik oss team.   I call catwalk an “alternative data model viewer” for Qlik Sense.

I’m going to start by showing a few screenshots and then tell you how to get started using catwalk.  It’s easy to try out.

After selecting an app to view, you’ll get a graphical table & field layout.  In addition to a visual depiction of linkage, you’ll get some rich information about cardinatility, relationships  and some nice explanations of subset ratios.

You can also make field selections and see how those selections impact the other tables.  A nice little tool in the lower right corner lets you build hypercubes (straight tables) on the fly to visualize aggregations.

I’m not going to tour all the features here because the first time you enter catwalk you’ll be offered a walkthrough guide.  I highly recommend you take this brief guide.  You can return to the guide at any time from the … menu in the upper right.  A tip on the guide: When it says “you can do X, try X” it won’t let you continue until you try actually try X.  Clever.

 

So how do you get access to all this goodness?  Go to the github page https://github.com/qlik-oss/catwalk for instructions.  Don’t like reading instructions?  Make sure your QS Desktop is started and go to the hosted version at  https://catwalk.core.qlik.com/.  Have fun.

The connection to your Qlik Sense server is from your local browser. No data is passed to the server hosting catwalk.

A really cool way to invoke catwalk is to set up a bookmark with the javascript shown here https://github.com/qlik-oss/catwalk/tree/master/bookmark.  Click the bookmark while in any app in the hub and you’ll open catwalk on that app.   Simple.

So while catwalk may have been conceived  as a data model explorer for Qlik Core (which has no built-in viewer) it’s just as valuable for Qlik Sense Enterprise or Desktop.

Have fun!

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13 thoughts on “Catwalk — The Alternative Data Model Viewer”

  1. Hey, thanks for the shoutout! We’re happy you enjoy catwalk 🙂 Feel free to join us on the Qlik Branch slack for discussions or file issues (bugs/feature requests) on GitHub if you’d like!

    Just a brief clarification:
    > If you don’t want to allow the external catwalk server to access your internal servers, it’s easy enough to download catwalk and run it on your own server.
    The hosted catwalk project will only access your data inside that browser session (i.e. your own computer directly connects to your Qlik Sense deployment). There is no data going through any external hosts. 🙂

  2. Thanks for a great write up!

    Just for clarification, NO data from your app is ever sent to the server hosting catwalk! It’s YOUR browser that is making the connection to the Sense server.

    1. Thanks for the clarification. I’ve updated the article to reflect that the connection is between the local browser and the server.

    1. Follow the instructions here https://github.com/qlik-oss/catwalk under the heading “Qlik Sense Enterprise”. Specifically, the need to whitelist catwalk.qlik.core.com and requirement that you be logged in on another browser tab.

      To get the doc list for selection, make sure your parameter has a trailing slash after app, whether the parameter is in the url or the input box. For example:
      http://catwalk.core.qlik.com/?engine_url=wss://myQSserver.com/app/

      I also note bug this morning that when selecting from the Enterprise app list the “/app” is missing from the generated url. You can work around it by adding “/app/” to the url before the appid.

      A great way to start is using the bookmark as it builds the correct url for you.

  3. Congratulations, amazing job Rob!!!

    I think you should do the similar for Tasks 🙂 QMC Task Management screen difficult to follow the relations between tasks, especially in complex structures.

    1. I’d like to make it clear that I had nothing to do with the development of catwalk. That credit goes to Qlik. I’m just a fan.

  4. Hi Rob,
    How would you compare this to NodeGraph? They have some data lineage capabilities as well.

    1. Hi John,
      Catwalk and NodeGraph are not comparable tools. Catwalk presents the data model of a single app and graphs the field and table relationahips. Nodegraph presents the data lineage of all apps and data sources together and does not examine relationships within an app.

  5. Stuck trying to get Enterprise to work!
    Tried 3 different servers, and 2 different web browsers… just get ‘Websocket connection failed. Please enter a valid websocket URL’ and a 403 error logged in the console “Firefox can’t establish a connection to the server at wss://*************.com.au/app/961770cb-f246-46aa-bcc6-9da1fecc1a4f.”
    The demo works fine though… any suggestions. Added the URL to whitelist as required

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