Microsoft Sites Document Library Data Source

 

About

The Microsoft Sites Document Library Data Source retrieves data from a file in a Microsoft Sites Document Library. This data can then be used to populate a list of options in dropdown or radiobutton questions.

Data sources are usually set up to fetch data on a specified schedule.  This allows teams to maintain and update their data through the external service of their choice, minimizing the need to access the web portal.

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Microsoft Sites (also known as Sharepoint Online) is a part of the Office 365 suite of tools and services. Document Libraries are file repositories on users' collaborative Sites.

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Set Up the Data Source

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  1. Create the data source as described here.
  2. Select Microsoft Sites Document Library as the type.
  3. Select a Name and optionally enter a Description.
  4. Set up the data source using the information below. 

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Data Retrieval and Format

Push updates to device after a fetch

If turned on, users will get a notification from the ProntoForms app after a fetch. It will prompt users to reconcile (send/receive or refresh).   This setting is recommended if it is important that users have the most up-to-date data.    

  • With "push updates" and an automatic fetch set up, some data sources send a notification for each fetch, whether or not the data source has new data.
  • If the fetch schedule is hourly, users may get notifications hourly even if the data has not changed.
  • Some users may find these notifications annoying or confusing.  Consider the fetch frequency carefully if notifications are enabled.  

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Fetch Schedule

Automatically fetch new data on a schedule:

  • If checked, data will be retrieved from the Document Library at the Fetch Frequency interval.
    • Make sure that the team has a Problem Contact Email Address.  If a fetch is unsuccessful for any reason, this address will receive an  email with an error message and details.  Without this email, it may not be immediately clear that a fetch has failed.  
  • If unchecked, the data source will not be updated automatically.   To retrieve new data from the Document Library, the data source will need to be manually updated through the "Fetch New Data" button in the web portal.

 

Fetch Frequency: 

Choose Hourly, Daily, Weekly or Monthly.  This is how often the data source will fetch new data from the Document Library.

 

Fetch Timezone: 

This applies to all fetch frequency options except “Hourly.”  Data will be fetched at midnight in the chosen time zone.

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Input Configuration

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  • Choose a Data Format (CSV, XML, JSON, or Excel). CSV is most commonly used. 
  • UTF-8 Encoded:  If the file to upload is saved with UTF-8 encoding, check this option.  If you are not sure if it is, leave this unchecked.
  • Trim Whitespace: This option will remove any space, tab, or other "whitespace" characters that may be present at the beginning or end of a data value.  This is recommended.
  • CSV Delimiter: This option is relevant only when uploading a CSV file.  When saving to delimited format from a spreadsheet application, comma is generally used as the separating character, but semi-colon may be used by some applications in some regions.

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Connection 

Connection: Set up an Office 365 Connection or choose an existing connection.

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Site Prefix 

The site prefix is the part of your site path that tells us where the Document Library you're trying to send form submissions to is, relative to the main site. There are three types it could be:

  • / : The Sharepoint URL, e.g. https://companyname.sharepoint.com, aka the root site.
  • /sites/: A sub-site to the main company Sharepoint, e.g. https://companyname.sharepoint.com/sites/SubSiteName
  • /teams/: A team site created for a specific group of people on the main company Sharepoint, e.g. https://companyname.sharepoint.com/teams/TeamName

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File Path

The folder expression tells ProntoForms where to find your data source file. You can find the URL for your Document Library in your browser address bar, or in the Settings listing, as shown below. As there are multiple ways of finding the URL and multiple possible configurations for Sharepoint, this is only an example:

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The folder expression should be in this format:

<site/subsites>/<document library>/<folders>/<filename>.<extension>

Our example screenshot does not point to a direct filename, but the path would be:

engineering/Health and Safety Demo/Forms/<filename>.<extension>

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Fill the Source Data immediately:

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  •  If left unchecked, the data source will wait until the specified time and interval to retrieve data for the first time.
  •  If checked, the first data retrieval will occur immediately after creating the data source.

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