Enable the CARTO Data Warehouse

This documentation is for the CARTO Self-Hosted Legacy Version. Use only if you've installed this specific version. Explore our latest documentation for updated features.


The CARTO Data Warehouse is a default connection that will help you get started with our platform. It gives you access to some demo datasets in order to start using the platform from the very beginning in case you don't have your own data warehouse with spatial data yet. It will also allow using spatial datasets from CARTO’s Data Observatory without connecting your own data warehouse to get access to cloud resources.

Default Behavior

By default, the CARTO Data Warehouse in CARTO Self-Hosted is disabled. In this state, certain functionalities are limited compared to when it's enabled. Understanding these limitations is essential for optimal use of CARTO's capabilities.

Affected Functionality

Onboarding experience

The CARTO platform has some demo tables, maps, and workflows powered by the CARTO Data Warehouse that can't be used when it is not enabled. Once it's enabled, you'll be able to complete the onboarding experience using these demo resources.

Data Observatory

Without the CARTO Data Warehouse, you can still explore the Spatial Data Catalog, but you can’t subscribe or use the data it offers it in Workflows/Builder directly. Instead, you’ll need to contact our team, who can deploy a copy of the data in your Data Warehouse.

CARTO Data Warehouse connection

With the activation of the CARTO Data Warehouse, a dedicated connection is automatically established for every new created organization within your Self-Hosted installation. This seamlessly integrated connection allow users to import data and start using the platform's capabilities.

How to Enable It

To take full advantage of the CARTO Data Warehouse in your organization, follow these steps:

  1. Update the CARTO Data Warehouse flag value:

The CARTO Data Warehouse can be enabled updating the customer.env file. You'll have to add the edit the following environment variable:

  1. Update your CARTO Self-Hosted installation to apply the change

Once the update process has finished, every CARTO organization created in your Self-Hosted deployment will have access to the CARTO Data Warehouse by default. Consequently, you'll be able to complete the onboarding process and access the Data Observatory subscriptions.

Update Requirements

When enabling the CARTO Data Warehouse in a Self-Hosted installation, there are new requirements that should be accomplished as a new piece is added into the CARTO Self-Hosted architecture.

If you check the previous diagram, the CARTO Data Warehouse is a new external piece connected to your Self-Hosted installation. Consequently, your deployment should be able to perform requests to an external component that will be hosted on CARTO's side.

As it's explained in the deployment requirements, this data warehouse is powered by Google BigQuery, so you'll have to allow requests to BigQuery APIs in order to use this feature.

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