Thursday, July 7, 2022
HomeBig DataIdeas and methods for high-performant dashboards in Amazon QuickSight

Ideas and methods for high-performant dashboards in Amazon QuickSight

Amazon QuickSight is cloud-native enterprise intelligence (BI) service. QuickSight routinely optimizes queries and execution to assist dashboards load shortly, however you may make your dashboard hundreds even sooner and be sure you’re getting the absolute best efficiency by following the guidelines and methods outlined on this put up.

Knowledge circulation and execution of QuickSight dashboard hundreds

The info circulation in QuickSight begins from the consumer browser to the online server after which flows to the QuickSight engine, which in some circumstances executes queries in opposition to SPICE—a Tremendous-fast, Parallel, In-memory Calculation Engine—or in different circumstances instantly in opposition to the database. SPICE makes use of a mixture of columnar storage, in-memory applied sciences enabled via the newest {hardware} improvements, and machine code era to run interactive queries on giant datasets and get speedy responses.

The online server, QuickSight engine, and SPICE are auto scaled by QuickSight. It is a absolutely managed service—you don’t want to fret about provisioning or managing infrastructure once you need to scale up a selected dashboard from tens to hundreds of customers on SPICE. Dashboards constructed in opposition to direct question knowledge sources could require provisioning or managing infrastructure on the shopper aspect.

The next diagram illustrates the info circulation:

Let’s have a look at the overall execution course of to grasp the implications:

  • A request is triggered within the browser, resulting in a number of static belongings similar to JavaScript, fonts, and pictures being downloaded.
  • All of the metadata (similar to visible configurations and structure) is fetched for the dashboard.
  • Queries are carried out, which can embody establishing row-level and column-level safety, or fetching dynamic management values, default parameters, and all values of drop-downs in filter controls.
  • As much as your concurrency restrict, the queries to render your visuals run in a particular sequence (described later on this put up). Should you’re utilizing SPICE, the concurrency of queries is way larger. Pagination inside visuals could result in extra queries.

The precise execution is extra complicated and is dependent upon how dashboards are configured and different elements similar to the info supply varieties, Direct Question vs. SPICE, cardinality of fields and the way typically knowledge is getting refreshed and so forth.  Many operations run in parallel and all visual-related queries are run through WebSocket, as proven within the following screenshot. Lots of the steps run within the end-user’s browser, subsequently there are limitations such because the variety of sequences and workloads that may be pushed onto the browser. Efficiency can also be barely totally different primarily based on the browser sort as a result of every browser handles competition in a different way.

Now let’s have a look at many nice ideas that may enhance your dashboard’s efficiency!


Using the capabilities of SPICE when doable is an effective way to spice up general efficiency as a result of SPICE manages scaling in addition to caching outcomes for you. We advocate utilizing SPICE at any time when doable.


As seen within the previous execution sequence, QuickSight fetches metadata up entrance for a given dashboard through the preliminary load. We advocate the next actions concerning metadata.

Take away unused datasets from evaluation

Datasets which will have been used up to now however don’t have any visible related to the dashboard anymore add to the metadata payload unnecessarily. It’s prone to impression to dashboard efficiency.

Ensure your row-level and column-level safety is performant

Row-Degree safety, column-level safety and dynamic default parameters every require lookups to happen earlier than the visible queries are issued. When doable, attempt to restrict the quantity and the complexity of your guidelines datasets to assist these lookups execute sooner. Use SPICE in your guidelines dataset when doable. Should you should use a direct question, make it possible for the queries are optimum and that the info supply you’re querying is scaled appropriately up entrance.

For embedded dashboards, an effective way to optimize row-level safety lookups is by using session tags for row-level safety paired with an nameless identification. Equally, dynamic default parameters, if used, will be evaluated within the host utility up entrance and handed utilizing the embedding SDK.

Calculated features

On this part, we provide ideas concerning calculated features.

Transfer calculations to the info prep stage

QuickSight means that you can add calculated fields within the knowledge prep or evaluation experiences. We strongly encourage you to maneuver as many calculations as doable to the info prep stage which is able to permit QuickSight to materialize calculations which don’t comprise aggregation or parameters into the SPICE dataset. Materializing calculated fields within the dataset helps you cut back the runtime calculations, which improves question efficiency. Even in case you are utilizing aggregation or parameters in your calculation, it’d nonetheless be doable to maneuver elements of the calculations to knowledge prep. As an illustration, in case you have a formulation like the next:

You’ll be able to take away the sum() and simply hold the ifelse(), which is able to permit QuickSight to materialize (precompute) it and reserve it as an actual discipline in your SPICE dataset. Then you may both add one other calculation which sums it up, or simply use sum aggregation when you add it to your visuals.

Usually materializing calculations that use complicated ifelse logic or do string manipulation/lookups will end result within the biggest enhancements in dashboard efficiency.

Implement the simplified ifelse syntax

The ifelse perform helps simplified statements. For instance, you would possibly begin with the next assertion:

The next simplified assertion is extra performant:

Use the toString() perform judiciously

The toString() perform has a a lot decrease efficiency and is way heavier on the database engine than a easy integer or number-based arithmatic calculations. Subsequently, you must use it sparingly.

Know when nulls are returned by the system and use null worth customization

Most authors make it possible for null situations on calculated fields are dealt with gracefully. QuickSight typically handles nulls gracefully for you. You need to use that to your benefit and make the calculations easier. Within the following instance, the division by 0 is already dealt with by QuickSight:

You’ll be able to write the previous code as the next:

If it’s essential signify nulls on visuals with a static string, QuickSight means that you can set customized values when a null worth is returned in a visible configuration. Within the previous instance, you possibly can simply set a customized worth of 0 within the formatting choice. Eradicating such dealing with from the calculated fields can considerably assist question efficiency.

On-sheet filters vs. parameters

Parameters are seemingly a quite simple assemble however they will shortly get difficult, particularly when utilized in nested calculation features or when utilized in controls. Parameters are all evaluated on the fly, forcing all of the dependencies to be dealt with actual time. Ask your self if every parameter is basically required. In some circumstances, you could possibly substitute them with easy dropdown management, as proven within the following instance for $market.

As a substitute of making a management parameter to make use of in a calculated discipline, you would possibly be capable to use the sphere with a dropdown filter management.

Textual content discipline vs. Dropdown (or Checklist) filter controls

If you find yourself designing an evaluation, you may add a filter management for the visuals you need to filter. if the info sort of the sphere is string, you might have a number of selections for the kind of management filter. Textual content discipline which shows a textual content field the place you may enter a single entry or a number of entries is usually recommended for the higher efficiency, moderately than Dropdown (or Checklist) which requires to fetch the values to populate a listing you can choose a single or a number of values.

On-sheet controls

The management panel on the high of the dashboard is collapsible by default, however this setting means that you can have an expanded state whereas publishing the dashboard. If this setting is enabled, QuickSight prioritizes the calls in an effort to fetch the controls’ values earlier than the visible hundreds. If any of the controls have excessive cardinality, it might impression the efficiency of loading the dashboard. Consider this want in opposition to the truth that QuickSight persists last-used management values and the reader may not really need to regulate controls as a primary step.

Visible varieties: Charts

On this part, we offer recommendation when utilizing Charts.

Use ‘Conceal the “different” class’ when your dimension has lower than the cutoff restrict

You’ll be able to select to restrict what number of knowledge factors you need to show in your visible, earlier than they’re added to the different class. This class accommodates the aggregated knowledge for all the info past the cutoff restrict for the visible sort you might be utilizing – both the one you impose or the one primarily based on show limits. If you already know your dimension has lower than the cutoff restrict, use this selection. This can enhance your dashboard efficiency.

The different class doesn’t present on scatter plots, warmth maps, maps, tables (tabular reviews), or key efficiency indicators (KPIs). It additionally doesn’t present on line charts when the x-axis is a date.

Visible varieties: Tables and pivot tables

On this part, we offer recommendation when utilizing tables and pivot tables.

Use the Values discipline properly when displaying a uncooked desk view

If you wish to output all of the uncooked knowledge into desk, you should utilize Group by fields, Values fields, or a mixture of them. Probably the most performant method is about each discipline into Values. When utilizing Group by, a question is first run underneath the hood adopted by the Group by perform, subsequently all the info is pulled from the database, which is dear.

Deploy a minimal set of rows, columns, metrics, and desk calculations

Should you embody too many mixtures of rows, columns, metrics, and desk calculations in a single pivot desk, you threat overwhelming the viewer. You can too run into the computational limitations of the underlying database. To cut back the extent of complexity and potential errors, you may take the next actions:

  • Apply filters to cut back the info included in for the visible
  • Use fewer fields within the Row and Column discipline wells
  • Use as few fields as doable within the Values discipline properly
  • Create extra pivot tables so that every shows fewer metrics
  • Scale back subtotals, totals and conditional formatting when doable

Uncollapsed columns are all the time the only case and can doubtless stay extra performant outdoors of some circumstances.

Visible queries sequence

The execution of the person visible sequence is left to proper, then high to backside. Understanding the sequence of execution will be useful: you may rearrange visuals in your dashboard with out dropping the context. Place heavier visuals additional down within the dashboard, and place light-weight KPI and perception visuals close to the highest to show “above-the-fold” content material sooner, which improves the dashboard efficiency’s notion in your readers.


Our remaining set of suggestions are with regard to embedding.

Take away person administration flows from the essential path

Most occasions, person administration and authentication flows (similar to DescribeUser and RegisterUser APIs) can run asynchronously on the host utility.

Contemplate registering the person upfront earlier than the precise embedding, in order that the overhead is faraway from each analytics web page go to.

Authenticate the person in your web site upfront, and purchase any Amazon Cognito or AWS Safety Token Service (Amazon STS) session tokens (if required) upfront (for instance, at person login time or residence web page go to). This reduces extra runtime latency overhead when a person visits an analytics web page.

Transfer workloads from shoppers to the online server or backend providers

If a QuickSight dashboard is embedded on a webpage on the host utility, which performs different actions too, play shut consideration to the sequence of API calls on the host. The QuickSight dashboard load is perhaps gated by different heavy API calls on the host utility. Transfer the logic to the online server or backend providers as a lot as doable to restrict competition on the browser.

Don’t tear down the embedding iFrame when the person navigates away from analytics part

When the person strikes briefly to a non-analytics web page of your net utility (particularly in single-page functions), as an alternative of eradicating the embedding iframe from DOM, you may conceal it from the person whereas protecting the iFrame within the web page DOM parts. This lets you resume the identical session when the person navigates again to analytics part of your utility, they usually don’t want to attend for reload.

Use navigateToDashboard() and navigateToSheet() at any time when doable

In case you have a number of dashboards in your host utility that don’t have to load concurrently, you may optimize the authentication circulation by using two APIs we expose, navigateToDashboard() or navigateToSheet(), in our JavaScript SDK. These APIs reuse the identical iFrame for every load, whereas reusing the authentication token.

This system has confirmed to be very efficient for a lot of of our embedding customers.

For extra details about these APIs, discuss with Amazon QuickSight Embedding SDK.


On this put up, we shared some ideas and methods for tuning the efficiency of your QuickSight dashboards. In 2021, we doubled our SPICE knowledge limits to 500 million rows of knowledge per dataset. As well as, incremental knowledge refresh is offered for SQL-based knowledge sources similar to Amazon Redshift, Amazon Athena, Amazon RDS, Amazon Aurora, PostgreSQL, MySQL, Oracle, SQL Server, MariaDB, Presto, Teradata or Snowflake as much as each quarter-hour, which cuts down time between knowledge updates by 75%. In 2022, we proceed to innovate in your behalf to make QuickSight dashboard hundreds much more performant.

We look ahead to your suggestions on how the following tips and methods helped your dashboards load sooner.

In regards to the Authors

Shekhar Kopuri is a Senior Software program Improvement Supervisor for Amazon QuickSight. He leads the entrance platform engineering workforce that focusses on varied points of entrance finish expertise together with web site efficiency. Earlier than becoming a member of AWS, Shekhar led improvement of a number of provisioning and activation community OSS functions for a big world telecommunications service supplier.

Blake Carroll is a Senior Frontend Engineer for Amazon QuickSight. He works with the frontend platform engineering workforce with a give attention to web site efficiency and has beforehand been the frontend lead for preliminary reporting and theming performance in QuickSight. Previous to becoming a member of Amazon, Blake was a co-founder within the digital interactive company house working with nationwide manufacturers to supply artistic net experiences.

Vijay Chaudhari is a Senior Software program Improvement Engineer for Amazon QuickSight, AWS’ cloud-native, absolutely managed BI service. Vijay began his profession with IBM, writing software program for the Info Administration group. At Amazon, he has constructed backend functions for retail programs, and close to real-time knowledge pre-computation, reporting and analytics programs at Amazon scale. He’s obsessed with studying and fixing new buyer issues, and serving to them undertake cloud native applied sciences.

Wakana Vilquin-Sakashita is Specialist Answer Architect for Amazon QuickSight. She works intently with prospects to assist making sense of the info via visualization. Beforehand Wakana labored for S&P World  helping prospects to entry knowledge, insights and researches related for his or her enterprise.



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