Looker 6.18 Extended Support Release Notes

  • 28 August 2019
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Anticipated Deployment Dates

ESR Staging: September 4, 2019

ESR Production Release: October 2, 2019 - December 1, 2019

Please note that comments on this thread are not formally tracked. For help requests and issue reports please open a separate conversation or reach out via the Looker Help Center to start a specific conversation.

Release Highlights

In addition to general tweaks and enhancements, this release comes with new and improved features in the following categories. Read on for more detail.

Preparing for Release

Please take notice of items marked with a ⚡ as they indicate changes to existing functionality and may require your attention. For more information see the Legacy Feature Updates and Features by Section below.

System Configuration Notices

Self-hosted customers should take note of items marked with a 🛠 as they indicate changes to system configurations that may impact your ability to run the new release.

Beta and Experimental Labs Features

The following new and improved experimental and beta features are marked with a ⚗:

Notable Features

  • IDE Folders

    Allows significantly better organization in LookML projects. The feature is meaningful to Git and therefore changes requires commit/merge. In addition, Include statements need to capture the file’s path. Opt-in via project settings for existing projects! Learn more

  • Internal Help Resources

    Admins will now have the ability to use a markdown file to configure a list of Looker help resources that are available at their company. Once configured, users will be able to access that list for the Help dropdown menu in the platform. Learn more.

  • ⚗ Content Curation Beta (Boards)

    Available in the Labs section of Looker, this solution allows people to easily organize dashboards and Looks for a team or initiative and provide guidance with markdown links. This solution works in tandem with folders (Spaces). It allows users to organize content for a temporary or permanent team or initiative without moving the underlying content, which is stored in folders. Learn more

  • ⚗ Alerts Labs Beta

    Create alerts directly from a dashboard tile. Ability to set up threshold-based conditions (greater than, less than, changes by, increases, etc) and receive notifications via email when a condition is met. Learn more


Features by Section

Dashboards, Visualizations, and Explore

  • Table-Next (Labs Beta).

    • Ability to control global text formatting. Including row font size, header font size, header text color, header background color, and header alignment. Learn more.

    • Ability to wrap or truncate text. Learn more.

    • Conditional formatting. Learn more.

    • Ability to transpose tables. Learn more.

    • Ability to display visualizations within the cells of a table. Learn more.

  • Alerts (Labs Beta).

    • Ability to give an alert a custom title. Learn more.

    • Ability to use table calculations when creating an alert.

    • Ability to subscribe to another user’s alert. Note the alert must be Public and the user must have the follow_alerts permission. Learn more.

  • Completely removed the “Legacy Rendering” Legacy Feature.

Platform and Administration

  • Localization of Number Formatting. Ability to implement number formatting by setting the user attribute, number_format of a user to one of the available number formats. The formatting is not respected on the x-axis of some visualizations. Learn more.

  • Embed events.

    • Added look:ready and explore:ready events to indicate when both the explore and query have loaded. Learn more.

    • Added a status result to dashboard embed events to indicate whether a tile produces an error.

  • 🛠 Dependencies JAR. Certain Java class files are now distributed separately; resulting in two distinct JAR files that will need to be downloaded and installed to update your Looker instances. Learn more.

  • Content curation Improvements (Labs beta).

    • Ability to view, scroll and sort all boards within a user’s organization.

    • User personal folders now appear both in the Browse menu and on the left sidebar.

    • Folders previously set as a ‘default folder’ will continue to appear in the left sidebar.

    • Developers can set LookML dashboards to appear in the Browse menu and left sidebar.

  • New user email configuration option: Allows admins to customize the body content via HTML of the welcome email new users receive to activate their Looker account. Learn more.

  • Inactivity Logout Session Setting. Session settings can be modified to force users to be logged out of a session after 15 minutes of inactivity. Activity is defined as a user clicking anywhere in Looker or touching the screen in the case of touchscreens, or typing anything into Looker. Learn more

  • Timeout session. The session timeout warning will now be displayed two minutes before timing out.

LookML and Development

  • Render Liquid HTML in the description parameter. Developers have the ability to implement Liquid HTML in the description parameter of fields. Learn more.

  • Importing remote projects is no longer in Labs.

    • The generalized “Project Import” feature is no longer in Labs.

    • Importing locally maintained projects is still in Labs under “Local Project Import”.

  • Introduced a method to preserve number formatting, regardless of what locale-based settings a user may have. Learn more.

Scheduling and Downloads

  • Run Schedule as Recipient is out of Labs Beta. This feature is now fully available on all instances.

  • Easy to Read Email Images is out of Labs Beta. This feature is now fully available on all instances.


  • Snowflake. Added support for External Table database objects to be scanned for database metadata information. This will surface external tables in SQL Runner and in LookML View generation.

  • Qubole Dialect. Qubole Quantum. The Qubole Presto dialect Qubole Presto Service has been rebranded and is now available as a separate dialect in the dropdown menu as Qubole Quantum.

  • Aster Data. Partially deprecated Aster Data. It will no longer be selectable as a dialect in the Dialect dropdown in the Connection panel. Existing Aster Data connections will continue to work.

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2005. Removed support for MS SQL 2005.

  • XtremeData. Removed support for XtremeData.

  • Qubole Presto and Qubole Quantum. Upgraded the JDBC driver to version 2.0.2 to fix intermittent NullPointerException errors. Learn more.

  • Oracle and Oracle ADWC. Upgraded the Oracle JDBC Thin Driver to version 18.3.

  • ⚡ Only Oracle ADWC. Changed JDBC connection string format for Oracle ADWC connections to use the TNS alias as the hostname. In addition, the TNS_ADMIN JDBC parameter is used to connect with Oracle Wallets.

    • Example:


  • Druid. Updated the JDBC driver to version 1.15.0.

  • Upgraded Snowflake driver (v3.8.4). Addresses Snowflake issues caused by prior versions of the driver. Learn more

  • Upgraded Athena driver (v2.0.7). Allows defining Workgroup=WorkgroupName parameter in the Additional JDBC Parameters field of a database connection in order to utilize AWS Workgroups .

General Tweaks and Bug Fixes


  • Fixed an issue where a Look or dashboard tile’s default filter values could be applied instead of a send or schedule’s filter values. This could only occur if the filter values came from a view that has v_ as the first two characters in its name.

  • Fixed an issue that resulted in User Attribute values set to hidden were printed to server logs.

Scheduling and Downloads

  • All formatting types in streamed results were being ignored. Formats will now be respected. Note: JSON detail format will continue to ignore formats as it is its expected behavior.

  • Fixed a scheduler issue that prevented users from running a specific look both when in development mode and when that user did not have development permission to the model the content was based on.

  • Fixed an issue where schedules failed when a user was in development mode and did not have developer access to the model, even if data should return outside of development mode.

  • Fixed an issue where the schedule dispatcher would not run on the master node if it had scheduler threads set to zero, even if other nodes had scheduler threads.

  • Fixed an issue where Looker was starting with a default of three unlimited execute scheduler threads even though this should be one.

  • Looker now retries schedules and actions if one fails due to multiple events firing simultaneously.

  • Addressed an issue that was causing look and dashboards rendering to fail.

  • Improved rendering of tables with more than 100 rows.

  • Improved the rendering of inline visualizations in schedules.

Dashboards, Visualizations, and Explore

  • Addressed the ability for the x-axis to respect number localization.

  • Addressed number formats mismatching between different viz types.

  • Addressed an issue that was resulting in drills displaying no results when null values were set to a type of string.

LookML and Development

  • Addressed an issue where value_format_name or value_format parameters were not being respected in the field being extended. It was taking the parameter definition of the view the field was extended from.

  • Improved an issue where utilizing non-alphanumeric characters upon configuring a new model that led to a 500 error.

  • Modified how the datatype parameter of type date interacted with a measure within the project IDE.

  • Addressed the inconsistent alignment of git metadata displayed in the project settings page.

  • Addressed LookML Validation Error Uncaught TypeError: Cannot read property '1' of null

  • Addressed an issue in which a persisted explore with the parameter sql_always_where defined using user attributes was pulling incorrect data from the cache.

Platform and Administration

  • Added clarifying text to the Sessions admin panel. No behaviors changed.

  • Addressed an issue where editing the user attribute for a group did not allow them to enter a string. Instead, it only displayed a dropdown of options.

  • Improved the ability to filter out Looker Employees from the User Activity dashboard under System Activity.

  • Improved the tracking of user and sudo details in events.

  • Addressed an issue where a user could bypass the account lockout by using a capital letter in the email.


  • Addressed an issue where the all_lookml_models() and lookml_model(lookml_model_name) API endpoints would return an empty array with explores that required access grants.


  • Google Cloud Spanner. Fixed an issue where the JDBC driver hit a Java instantiation exception.

  • Netezza. SQL Runner will now populate database objects from INFORMATION_SCHEMA.VIEWS in addition to INFORMATION_SCHEMA.TABLES in the Schema and Tables sidebar.

  • Snowflake. Fixed an issue where the SQL Runner Describe command did not scope Snowflake tables to the schema, causing describe to fail for tables outside of the default schema.

  • Addressed a Snowflake JDBC driver version 3.8.3 issue that would return a NullPointerException message when a queried result set was larger than could be held in one result chunk. Queries returned a blank error message to Looker.

Embedded Analytics

  • Fixed an issue where updating a Look filter via an iFrame message failed with an error response.

  • Fixed an issue where failed schedules mentioned Looker despite settings being set to not reference Looker.

  • Fixed an issue where the whitelabel favicon was displaying the Looker icon when downloading a PNG in the browser.

  • Numeric filters can now be set on Looks via the embed messaging in an iframe.

  • Fixed an issue where clicking “Explore from Here” when editing an embedded dashboard did not open in a new tab.

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