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Vertica QuickStart for Looker

Note The Vertica QuickStart apps are being migrated to a new page. They will be available again soon.

To view this document in PDF format, click here

What is a QuickStart Application?

The Vertica QuickStarts are sample applications that show how complementary technologies can work together to deliver outstanding benefits to end users. Each QuickStart uses Vertica Analytic Database with a different BI or ETL tool from a Vertica technology partner.

The QuickStarts are available for download free of charge.

About this Document

This document explains how to deploy and use the Vertica QuickStart for Looker. The document includes the setup information that you need to get up and running, and it provides an overview of the Looker dashboards and the Vertica data source.

Vertica QuickStart for Looker Overview

The Vertica QuickStart for Looker is a sample application implemented as a set of Looker dashboards powered by Vertica Analytic Database. The dashboards present sample retail data for analysis. The QuickStart shows how retail companies could use Vertica and Looker to quickly explore, visualize, and gain insight into their data stored in Vertica.

For a quick introduction to the Vertica QuickStart for Looker, see this short video: 


The Vertica QuickStart for Looker requires Vertica database server with a standard installation of the VMart example database, Vertica client, and a Looker instance.

Install the Software

To install the software that is required for running the QuickStart, follow these steps:

Install the Vertica Database Server

The Vertica database server runs on Linux platforms. If you do not have Vertica, you can download the RPMs or a virtual machine free of charge from the Vertica Community Portal at

To download and install Vertica Community Edition:

  1. On myVertica, under Vertica Community Edition, click Signup Now to register for a Community Edition account.
  2. Provide your information and click Signup.
  3. Follow the on-screen instructions to download and install Vertica Community Edition.

Install the VMart Example Database

The Vertica QuickStart for Looker assumes a default installation of the Vertica VMart example database. Follow the tutorial in the Vertica Getting Started Guide to install VMart.

In the tutorial:

The VMart example database includes three schemas: Public, Online Sales, and Store. The schemas are interrelated and share many dimensions. For details, see VMart Example Database Schema, Tables, and Scripts.

Install Looker

Looker is a web-based application that runs on Linux platforms. A Looker instance can be deployed for either on-premise or cloud-based access.

If you do not have Looker, you can download and install it as follows:

  1. Go to the Looker website.
  2. Click Get Started.
  3. Provide your contact information and click Request a Trial to request a free trial of Looker.

Install the JDBC Client Driver

Before you can connect to Vertica using Looker you must download and install a Vertica client package. This package includes the Vertica JDBC driver that Looker uses to connect to Vertica.

To download and install Vertica Client:

  1. Go to the Vertica Client Drivers page on the myVertica portal.
  2. Download the Vertica client package that matches your operating system and the version of Vertica that you are using.
  3. Follow the steps for installing the Vertica client as described in the Vertica documentation.

Note Vertica drivers are forward compatible, so you can connect to the Vertica server using previous versions of the client. For more information, see Client Driver and Server Version Compatibility in the Vertica documentation.

Deploy the QuickStart

Follow these instructions to access the Vertica VMart LookML project that is shared publicly on GitHub, move a copy of the project into your own GitHub repositorym, and load it into your Looker instance.


  • A GitHub account
  • A Looker account with developer or administrative privileges

To deploy the HP Vertica QuickStart for Looker, use the following instructions.

Copy the GitHub SSL Clone URL

In GitHub, you need to generate an SSL clone URL that Looker uses to import the VMart_Quick_Start files:

  1. In a browser, navigate to the GitHub page for the VMart QuickStart:
  1. Create a fork of this directory in your own repository. In the upper right-hand corner, click Fork.


  1. In the left-hand pane, to generate the SSH clone URL, click SSH. Copy the SSH clone URL to your clipboard. 


Create a New Looker Project

Open Looker and create a new project.

  1. Log in to Looker and select LookML > Manage Projects.


  1. To create a new LookML project, click New LookML Project.


  1. Name your project and disable Generate Model & Views.


  1. Click Create Project.  
  2. Click Configure Git.


  1. Paste the SSL clone URL for your repository that you copied to the clipboard and click Continue.


  1. Copy the deploy key that Looker creates to your clipboard.


Return to GitHub and Add the Deploy Key

Reopen GitHub to add the deploy key that Looker generated.

  1. Return to your GitHub repository page.
  2. On the right-hand pane, click Settings.


  1. On the Settings page, click Deploy keys.


  1. Click Add deploy key.


  1. Paste the deploy key that Looker provides and check Allow write access.


  1. Click Add key.
  2. If prompted, enter your GitHub password and press Enter.

      GitHub added the deploy key successfully:


 Return to Looker and Import Project Files from GitHub

 Now you can import the VMart_Quick_Start files into Looker:

  1. Return to Looker and click Continue Setup.
  2. To import the project model files from GitHub into your Looker instance, click Sync Developer Mode.


  1. When Looker completes the sync operation, you can see the contents of the VMart_Quick_Start project in Looker.


  1. The database connection name in Looker and in the model file must be the same. To view the database connection name, click Admin and then Connections.


  1. If this value does not match the database connection name in the model file, double-click the model file, make the change, and click Save.


  1. To view one of the VMart dashboards, double-click the dashboard name. When the code opens, next to the dashboard name, select View Dashboard from the drop-down list.

About the QuickStart Dashboards

The QuickStart dashboards present sample business and operational data that a large retail chain might track over time. The chain operates brick-and-mortar stores and an online marketplace. It sells a wide variety of products that it purchases from different vendors.

Note The data in your dashboards will not match the data in the screen shots in this document. This is because the VMart data generator generates data randomly. 

Executive Dashboard

The Executive Dashboard presents a high-level view of the business data that is shown in greater detail in the other dashboards. You can use this dashboard to analyze the overall functioning of the business over time.


Online Sales Dashboard

This dashboard presents information that you can use to analyze the performance of the chain’s online sales over time.


Store Sales Dashboard

This dashboard presents information that you can use to analyze the performance of the chain’s store sales over time.


Customer Dashboard

This dashboard presents information that you can use to discover patterns of customer behavior over time.


Call Center and Employee Dashboard

This dashboard presents information that you can use to analyze the performance of the chain’s sales personnel, both in stores and in online call centers.


Product Dashboard

This dashboard presents information that you can use to analyze products sold online and in stores over time.


Vendor Dashboard

This dashboard presents information that you can use to analyze the chain’s interaction with different vendors over time.


Inventory Dashboard

This dashboard presents information that you can use to analyze the chain’s inventory over time.


Find More Information

Topic Link


Looker QuickStart on GitHub

VMart Example Database

Introducing the VMart Example Database

VMart Example Database Schema, Tables, and Scripts


Vertica Knowledge Base

Vertica documentation

Big Data Marketplace

Contact Us

The Vertica QuickStart for Looker is intended as an example of complementary technologies: Looker with Vertica Analytic Database. As such, it is freely available for demonstration and educational purposes to anyone wishing to explore these technologies. The QuickStart is not a product, and is not governed by any license or support agreement.

We welcome your feedback. If you have questions, comments, or suggestions, please contact us by clicking the Contact developer button on the Big Data Marketplace download page for the QuickStart.

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