Apache Superset Python Installation: 4 Easy Steps

on Apache Superset, Data Driven, Data Driven Strategies • June 10th, 2021 • Write for Hevo

Without a doubt, the age of data as a currency is here. It is the sole responsibility of business owners to make the switch or fall short of maximizing the advantages of the revolution. With this in mind, databases have become some of the most valued assets of any business. A database is a collection of information stored in a format that allows easy access, manipulation, and update of stored data. 

Apache Superset has established itself as a giant in the field of Data Visualization and Data Exploration. Python is a scripting language that has become a household name due to its widespread applications and its growing importance in the field of Data Science. This post will tackle Superset Python installation on different OS in great detail.

Table of Contents

Introduction to Apache Superset

Apache Superset Logo
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What makes databases so important? For starters, they help you visualize information directly related to your business. This includes marketing data, profits, client and product data, and many more. With such information at your fingertips, you can make business decisions based on facts. Without a functional database for your business, you are likely to make business decisions based on your assumptions, and this is rarely a profitable business model. 

Now that you have seen the importance of databases in the business world, numerous tools can make Data Visualization efficient. One of the most valuable tools in this niche is the Apache Superset, an open-source cloud-native application designed to handle large-scale Data Visualization and exploration purposes. With the software, users of all skillsets can interact with data using graphs, charts, and more. 

Apache Superset distinguishes itself as a lightweight, fast, intuitive Data Exploration and Visualization platform that can handle data at the petabyte scale (Big Data). Apache Superset is known in the marketplace for its cloud-native architecture designed from the ground up for scale. Apart from this it also offers a lightweight semantic layer that allows Data Analysts to quickly define custom metrics and dimensions along with seamless, in-memory queries and asynchronous caching.

Understanding the Key Features of Apache Superset

Superset Data Visualizations
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Below are some of the features of Apache Superset that make it ideal for Data Visualization:

  •  It has a user-friendly interface that makes it suitable for users of a basic skill set. 
  • You can create different dashboards and share them with the relevant parties. 
  • The software entails a rich set of Data Visualizations.
  • Integration capabilities with Druid.io
  • The software comes with a state-of-the-art security layer that lays out well-defined rules on who gets access to the system. 
  • It uses SQLAlchemy to integrate with numerous most SQL-speaking RDBMS, including PostgreSQL and MySQL.
  • It boasts an easy-to-use interface that gives complete access to the user with customization options as to what is displayed in the UI. 
Superset Dashboards
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By now, you should have a rough idea of what Apache superset is and what it is designed for. One question that hasn’t been sufficiently answered is what you stand to gain by using the software. Below is a list of some of the benefits of Apache Superset:

  • It is completely open-source. 
  • The user interface is attractive, allowing for maximum data exploration. 
  • SQL-LAB provides interactive querying capabilities.
  • Apache Superset offers integration with major authentication backends (OpenID, LDAP, OAuth, REMOTE_USER, and database to name a few).
  • The setup process is relatively quick and easy.
  • No coding experience is needed. (All you need is some basic SQL).
  • Out-of-the-box support for a majority of databases supporting SQL.
  • Apache Superset also provides the ability to add custom visualization plugins and APIs for programmatic customization.
Superset SQL Lab
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Introduction to Python

Python Logo
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Python is a high-level, interactive, interpreted, and object-oriented scripting language. Python was designed to be highly readable which is reflected in its frequent usage of English keywords. This is opposed to other languages that make use of punctuation. A few key characteristics of Python are as follows:

  • Python can be easily integrated with C++, C, COM, CORBA, Java, and ActiveX.
  • Python supports automatic garbage collection.
  • It supports structured and functional programming methods as well as Object-Oriented Programming.
  • Python can be compiled to byte-code for building large applications or be used as a scripting language.

Prerequisites

Before setting up Apache Superset, there are various factors you should keep in mind. They include: 

  • Apache only supports Python version 3.7 and above. Make sure to update your Python version before installing the software. 
  • Currently, Apache Superset does not have support for windows. Therefore the best option for such users is to install a virtual environment such as VirtualBox and then proceed and install Ubuntu or Linux software in the tool. 

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Understanding the Superset Python Installation Setup on Ubuntu

You can carry out the following steps to setup Superset Python Installation on Ubuntu:

Superset Python Installation: Installation of Dependencies

Since the software has some OS-level dependencies on Ubuntu, it’s a good idea to begin by installing these first. You can do the by running the following command.

sudo apt-get install build-essential libssl-dev libffi-dev python-dev python-pip libsasl2-dev libldap2-dev

Superset Python Installation: Upgrading Python Pip and Setup Tools

You need to upgrade to the latest version of pip for you to install superset without any hitches. You can do this by keying in the following command: 

pip install --upgrade setuptools pip

Superset Python Installation: Installation and Initialization of Apache Superset

Once everything is in check, you can now go on ahead and install Apache Superset by keying in the following commands, which will initialize the tool. 

# Install supersetpip install superset
# Create an admin user (you will be prompted to set username, first and last name before setting a password)fabmanager create-admin --app superset
# Initialize the databasesuperset db upgrade
# Load some data to play withsuperset load_examples
# Create default roles and permissionssuperset init
# To start a development web server on port 8088, use -p to bind to another portsuperset runserver -d

Superset Python Installation: Logging into Apache Superset

After following the instructions laid out above, the next step is to head on to your preferred browser and type in http://localhost:8088. You should log in using the credentials you used while creating the superset. 

That’s it! You have successfully installed Apache Superset in your OS!

Understanding the Superset Python Installation Setup on Windows

For windows users, the best option is to install a virtual environment such as Virtualbox and install Ubuntu Desktop here. Once this is done, you can follow the instructions laid out above and install and initialize Apache Superset.  You need to allocate enough space for both the OS and dependencies. This includes at least 8GB of RAM and 40GB of storage space.

Conclusion

From the instructions above, you have successfully installed Apache Superset using Python into your system-Ubuntu or Windows. You can now connect a database of your choosing and visualize your data in real-time.  There are many advantages to using the software other than the fact that it is free. For instance, as can be seen from the instructions above, the process is pretty straightforward.

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