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External Tool

KNIME External Tool Node version 4.0.0.v201905311239 by KNIME AG, Zurich, Switzerland

Allows running an external program on the data. It will write out the incoming datatable into a temporary file which can be used as an input to an external tool. After the tool finishes the node will read in an output file the tool has (hopefully) created.
NOTE: Running an external executable takes the control out of our hands. There will be no progress, no failure message, exceptions will not be caught, it may even cause the entire KNIME platform to fail and you loose any unsaved data, etc. Especially, if a shell script (or .bat file) creates sub processes (by calling other programs), these sub processes will continue living even if the node gets canceled. Furthermore, their output will not be fetched, causing them (possibly) to block (not finishing their job) and to exist until you kill them off manually.
Highlighting will not work across this node. Colors are lost (the Color Manager node must be inserted in the flow to re-generate colors).
The output of the external tool is caught and can be seen in the node's views (the last 500 lines only, full output is logged to KNIME's log file - if the log level is set to DEBUG, which is the default).


Input Data File
Enter a file path and name. Before calling the external tool the data from the input port will be written into this file - with the column separator specified and with or without column names and row IDs, depending on the corresponding checkmarks.
External Tool
Specify an existing and executable file that will be called with the specified command line arguments. Before executing this external tool, the current working directory is set to the specified directory. The input file is NOT automatically transfered into the external tool. You need to specify appropriate command line arguments to read this file with your external tool. The tool also needs to write its output into the specified location, in order for the node to pick it up from there.
Output Data File
Specify the file that is created by the external tool with its output data. The node reads the content of this file and provides it at its output port. Also specify the separation character used in the file and if the file contains column names and row IDs.

Input Ports

Input data for the external tool

Output Ports

Data read from the output file of the tool


Tool Output
The text sent to standard out during the execution of the external tool. (If it appears in gray, it's the output of a previously failing run which is preserved for your trouble shooting.)
NOTE: Keeping the view open may slow down the process significantly, if it produces a lot of output in a short amount of time.
Tool Error Output
The text sent to standard error output during the execution of the external tool. (If it appears in gray, it's the output of a previously failing run which is preserved for your trouble shooting.)

Best Friends (Incoming)

Best Friends (Outgoing)



To use this node in KNIME, install KNIME External Tool Node from the following update site:

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