Dropbox Data Source

 

About

The Dropbox Data Source retrieves  data from a file in a Dropbox account. 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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Dropbox is a popular cloud-based storage service that makes files available from anywhere, on any device.  Files can be accessed with the file sync desktop app, a web browser, or any mobile devices with the Dropbox mobile app. Any changes made are immediately synced to all other platforms.

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Set Up the Data Source

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  1. Create the data source as described here.
  2. Select DropBox Data Source 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 Dropbox 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 Dropbox, 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 Dropbox.

 

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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Dropbox Connection

Connection Configuration 

Set up a Dropbox Connection or use an existing connection. 

Note: When creating a Dropbox Data Source, allow ProntoForms to create the Apps folder. Do not do so manually, as this will cause connection failure. If you have created the folder manually:

  1. Delete the Apps folder on Dropbox.
  2. Clear the Dropbox connection on ProntoForms.
  3. Follow the steps to create the connection again.

 

File Path

Enter the path to the file containing the data.

  • ProntoForms can only access data in the Apps/ProntoForms folder that is automatically created after connecting through the application. Files must be stored here.
  • Enter the path and file name of WITHOUT Apps/ProntoForms.
  • Examples:
    • If the "datasource.csv" file is in Dropbox at Apps/Prontoforms, enter "datasource.csv"
    • If the file "datasource.csv" is in Dropbox at Apps/ProntoForms/Data Sources, then the file path is "/Data Sources/datasource.csv".
    • If the file "datasource.csv" is not in the Apps/ProntoForms folder, the data fetch will fail.
    • For example, in the below image, the file path for R1 Customer List is, "Data Sources/R1 Customer List.xlsx".

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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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