Visualization in Databricks SQL

Databricks has built-in support for charts and visualizations in both Databricks SQL and in notebooks. This page describes how to work with visualizations in Databricks SQL. For information about using visualizations in notebooks, see Visualizations in Databricks notebooks.

To view the types of visualizations, see visualization types.


For information about a preview version of Databricks charts, see preview chart visualizations.

Create a visualization

  1. Run the following query in SQL editor.

       hour(tpep_dropoff_datetime) as dropoff_hour,
       COUNT(*) AS num
    FROM samples.nyctaxi.trips
    WHERE pickup_zip IN ({{pickupzip}})
    GROUP BY 1
    Add visualization
  2. After running a query, in the Results panel, click + and then select Visualization.

  3. In the Visualization Type drop-down, choose Bar.

  4. Enter a visualization name, such as Dropoff Rates.

  5. Review the visualization properties.

    Configure chart
  6. Click Save.

Visualization tools

If you hover over the top right of a chart in the visualization editor, a Plotly toolbar displays where you can perform operations such as select, zoom, and pan.

Plotly toolbar

If you do not see the toolbar, your administrator has disabled toolbar display for your Databricks SQL instance.

Temporarily hide or show only a series

To hide a series in a visualization, click the series in the legend. To show the series again, click it again in the legend.

To show only a single series, double-click the series in the legend. To show other series, click each one.

Clone a visualization

To clone a visualization:

  1. Open the visualization in the SQL editor.

  2. Click Kebab menu in the visualization’s tab (not Kebab menu next to Edit Visualization).

  3. Click Duplicate.

Enable aggregation in a visualization

For bar, line, area, pie and heatmap charts, you add aggregation directly in the visualization rather than modifying the query to add an aggregation column. This approach has the following advantages:

  • You don’t need to modify the underlying SQL.

  • You can quickly perform scenario-based data analysis on the fly by modifying the aggregation.

  • The aggregation applies to the entire data set, not just the first 64,000 rows displayed in a table.

Aggregation is available in the following visualizations:

  • Line

  • Bar

  • Area

  • Pie

  • Heatmap

  • Histogram

Aggregations do not support combination visualizations, such as displaying a line and bars in the same chart. To create a new combination chart, clone a legacy visualization.

Table visualizations display only the first 64,000 rows.

To aggregate Y-axis columns for a visualization:

  1. From the SQL editor, create a new visualization or edit an existing one.

    If you see the message This visualization uses an old configuration. New visualizations support aggregating data directly within the editor, you must re-create the visualization before you can use aggregation.

  2. Next to the Y-axis columns, select the aggregation type from the following for numeric types:

    • Sum (the default)

    • Average

    • Count

    • Count Distinct

    • Max

    • Min

    • Median

    Or from the following for string types:

    • Count

    • Count Distinct

    Your changes are applied to the preview of the visualization.

  3. Click Save.

  4. The visualization displays the number of rows that it aggregates.

In some cases, you may not want to use aggregation on Y-axis columns. To disable aggregation, click on the kebab menu Kebab menu next to Y columns and uncheck Use aggregation.

Customize colors for a visualization


By default, if a legacy dashboard uses a custom color palette, visualization color choices are ignored. To override this setting, see Use a different color palatte for a visualization.

You can customize a visualization’s colors when you create the visualization or by editing it.

  1. Create or edit a visualization.

  2. Click Colors.

  3. To modify a color, click the square and select the new color by doing one of the following:

    • Click it in the color selector.

    • Enter a hex value.

  4. Click anywhere outside the color selector to close it and save changes.

Add a visualization to a dashboard

  1. Click the kebab menu Kebab menu button beneath the visualization.

  2. Select + Add to Dashboard.

  3. Enter a dashboard name. A list of matching dashboards displays.

  4. Select a dashboard.

    Choose dashboard
  5. Click OK. A pop-up displays with a link to the dashboard.

    Added to dashboard

Download a visualization as a CSV, TSV, or Excel file

To download a visualization as a CSV, TSV, or Excel file, click the kebab menu Kebab menu button next to the visualization name and select the type of download desired. If the visualization uses aggregations, the downloaded results are also aggregated. The downloaded results are from the most recent execution of the query that created the visualization.

download tab delimited

Download a chart visualization as an image file

To download a local image file of a chart visualization, display the visualization tools and click the camera icon.

Download visualization as image

A png file is downloaded to your device.