As we approach a new release (Winter is coming!), I’m finally getting around to writing about a new feature in the last release that is still plaguing my team…. Global Filters. Global filters are a great feature that, at least I, never used to their full potential until recently because you couldn’t customize the look and feel of them. With the Summer ’19, we got to update the filter style and also decide if a Global Filter should be a singular filter or we could also group them all together. AMAZING. But lots of other things changed too – you used to be able to set your defaults while you were creating the filter, and to add a new one, you would just click a plus button in the filter widget. That’s all gone, and even though the new method of adding and managing Global Filters is great, its a bit of a learning curve. Lettuce begin.
Adding Global Filters
When you drag the Global Filter widget onto your canvas, you get a singular looking empty filter. This comes with options! In our widget settings in the right sidebar, we can now select if we want to add a single Global Filter or group them all together. This is AWESOME because a big reason I never used them in the past was because I wanted to display some but not others, but the only choice I had was all or nothing. Now I have this option. There are other settings here like style, but we’ll get to that in another post. For now, let’s just add a Global Filter.
I can add a Global Filter to my widget in 1 of 2 ways: I can simply click into the widget like you would any other widget, or I can click the “Add Global Filter” button in the settings panel. Both options take you to the same place – a popup to select the dataset you want to use, and then another to select the field from that dataset.
I’ve added one Global Filter and now I want to add another one, but wait… where do I do that? This has been the cause of most of the confusion around here. To add more Global Filters, you can do 1 of 2 things: you can drag another Global Filter widget onto your canvas and repeat the steps you just took, or you can click the “Manage Global Filters” button in the settings panel. If you chose the 2nd option, there are a couple of things you can do. First, you’ll notice that the Global Filter you already created is organized under the Dataset it belongs to, similar to your list of Steps. Next to the Dataset name, there is a plus sign that you can click to add another Global Filter from that same Dataset. If you want to add a Global Filter from a different dataset, you will click the “Add Global Filter” button and then start the process of selecting which Dataset and field you want, just like before. Both options give you different results, but more on that after you look at this gif I made for you:
If you tried option 1: add the Global Filter by clicking into the new Global Filter widget, then your Global Filter is actually in your widget now. If you did Option 2: Add Global Filter from the Manage Global Filter settings…. it isn’t. This has also been a source of confusion in my office. If you added a filter by means of Option 2, you probably want to drag it to addit to your widget… but you can’t. There is no drag and drop functionality here. Instead, you would click into the Global Filter widget like you would have in Option 1, and you’ll notice across the top of the Add Global Filter window that there are 2 options: Add New or Choose Existing. Select Choose Existing, click the filter you want to add, and then voila! You’re done. Another option, of course, is to set your Global Filters to be “All Global Filters” and then they would all show up in one widget. Which brings us nicely to formatting.