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Creating a DataSource

Learn to create a new DataSource with these easy steps and best practices.

Updated over a week ago

To create a new DataSource, you must first prepare a CSV file containing your data. We use the CSV format because it is simple and most applications can export data in this format. The one requirement for the CSV is that the key column must be the first column in the CSV. See here for more on DataSources and key columns.

Suppose you want to create a DataSource called “Customers”, which contains the name, address, city, state, and zip code for each of your customers. A typical workflow for generating a CSV might go something like this:

  • Export the desired information from wherever it resides. In this example, you will likely have the customer information in one of your existing business systems, like Quickbooks.

  • Open the exported file in a spreadsheet program like Excel, and make your key column the first column. In this example, that would be the customer name.

  • Save your spreadsheet in the CSV format.

It is good practice to include your column names in the CSV header. Most applications will have the option to do this.

Once you have your CSV file ready, do the following to import it into GoFormz and create a DataSource:

1. Expand the More dropdown in the web app header, and select Manage DataSources.

2. Click the Create button. The Create Datasource dialog appears.

3. Drag-and-drop your file from your computer into the upload box or click anywhere within the upload box to launch the file chooser, then select your CSV file.

4. In the DataSource Name field, enter the name for your new DataSource. This field will also automatically populate with the name of your CSV file if nothing is entered.

5. Check the box for Make Available for Public Forms if you would like this DataSource to be usable by forms created from Public Form links. If not checked, this DataSource will not show on a Database field when the form is created using a Public Form link.

6. Click Next to continue to the Preview of your new DataSource.

7. The DataSource preview step will show the first 10 rows of your DataSource. By default, GoFormz will not designate your first row as a header row (as seen above). If your first row is a Header Row, select the checkbox at the top next to This CSV has a header row.

This will automatically replace the top row of your preview with the contents of your first row on the CSV.

Key Column Duplicate Rows: If your CSV contains duplicate rows in the Key Column, the preview step will highlight these duplicates and not allow you to upload this CSV (even if those duplicates do not fall within the top 10 rows of your CSV).

To fix this, open your CSV in Excel or Numbers and update the Key Column Rows to not be duplicates of each other.

6. Finally, once you are satisfied with your DataSource and there are no duplicate errors found, click Create.

The data from the CSV file will be uploaded into GoFormz, and your new DataSource will appear in the DataSources list. See here for details on editing your new DataSource.

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