Advanced Techniques: How Dashboard Prompts and Analysis Prompts Interact

You can combine and wire prompts in various ways to create dashboards that enable users to quickly and easily request precise, meaningful data. Most people don’t need to perform this task.

Combining and wiring prompts enables you to specify how dashboard prompts interact with analysis prompts. Variable prompts can’t be combined or wired.

For example, you can create analysis A that contains information about the amount of product that is sold by region. To the Region column, add the Is protected option and then add a Region prompt. You can then create analysis B that contains information about sales person by region. You can also create analysis C that contains information about city by region. You then create and save a dashboard prompt for Region. You create a dashboard and add analyses A, B, and C and the Region dashboard prompt. When you run the dashboard, the dashboard prompt input drives only what is displayed in analyses B and C. In this scenario, analysis A doesn’t use the Region value that is specified in the dashboard prompt. This is because you set analysis A's Region column filter value to Is protected. The only way that analysis A accepts a prompt value is if the user specifies a prompt value in Region A's prompt fields.

There are various ways that you can combine and wire prompts, as described in the following table.

Wiring Method Description

Auto wiring

Auto wiring assumes that you intended to create a functioning prompt for the column and, therefore, activates and applies the prompt. Auto wiring is applied when you create an analysis and add a column prompt. This method doesn’t require the is prompted filter operator. Any unprotected filter can be used.

Setting the filter operator to is prompted provides a more precise level of control between prompts and filters than the auto wiring method. See the "Filter operator is set to is prompted" row in this table.

Constrained prompts

Use this method with several columns in a prompt to constrain the user's prompt choice based on subsequent choices. Constrained prompts can be set up on the Prompt options dialog to specify which prompt narrows the choices. For example, suppose one column filters on region and the next column filters on city. Then, the city column can be constrained to show only cities in the selected region.

Filter operator is set to is Prompted.

Use this method to build complex prompts that interact with filters. When you use this method, you have full control over how the dashboard prompts, inline prompts, and filters apply to the embedded analysis. See About Prompted Filters.

Selection Steps Override with Prompts Option

Use this method to use an analysis or dashboard column prompt to provide the data choices for a specific member selection step. Because you can’t use filters with hierarchical columns, selection steps are the only way that you can use prompts with hierarchical columns. Only one selection step per column selection step set can be overridden with a prompt. All selection steps before and after the overridden step are processed as specified. See Refining Selections of Data and Overriding a Selection Step with a Prompt.

Protected versus Unprotected filters

Use this method to determine whether the dashboard prompt can supply the inline prompt's value when the corresponding column's filter value is set to something other than Is prompted. The unprotected and protected filter settings can be used when a dashboard prompt and inline prompt reside on the same dashboard. Also, both prompts must have been created for the same column.

When the column's filter value is unprotected, the dashboard prompt value determines the analysis' results. Suppose the filter value is set to something other than Is prompted (for example, Is equal to/is in) and the filter is set to protected filter. Then, the dashboard prompt can’t determine the report results.