We want to import an excel/csv file from the file system in the same machine in which Appian runs. Do we need a plugin for that? We can use SFTP services or any other plugin but I wanted to know if Appian offers somethign out of the box. When I look at the excel tools that we have in place they expect that the file is already in the Appian internal DMS.
what I have seen so far is that we can use collab filesystem utilities or SFTP utilities. It seems that Appian does not offer something out of the box yet.
I am tempted to use the collab filesystem utilities because as far as I know the SFTP utilities require a SFTP client installed in the machine. Any recommendation?
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Thanks Mike and Chris for your comments. However, the fact that is not approved for the cloud could cause us a problem if we deploy the app in the cloud, which is something that could happen. Moreover, I think it is using the SMB library and that caused a problem in a client. I think now that using SFTP services is a safer solution. It requires a SFTP client to be installed on the machine though.
AFAIK it's not cloud approved because it's not usable on cloud servers, only on on-premise (local) environments. The biggest part of this is, Cloud environments don't give us any access to their local filesystems, and therefore such functionality would be useless even if you somehow got the plug-in onto your cloud site.
So if you would still need similar functionality after migrating to a Cloud server (a constraint you didn't mention originally(?)), then you would need to consider alternative options.
yes, you are right. However, it uses a very old version of the SMB library and that caused a problem in a client of us. The customer blocked any call used by SMB 1.0. Updating the version of the library to the next version was easy (from SMB v1.0 to SMB v1.1). However it might happen that we are forced to update again to SMB v2.0 one day and that will require significant changes inside the plugin.
The SFTP services seem to be better supported. However, if installing a SFTP client is a problem for our new client we will use the Move to Collab plugin.
If you're fairly sure you will be migrating to a Cloud environment in the foreseeable future, then I assume it will be worth the effort to look into a solution that avoids the use of the Collab/FS plugin. I've been on projects where we implemented an FTP solution with relative stability.
Another alternative I'd encourage you to look into (in the chance that this might be easier to setup on your client's side) would be exposing the necessary documents via Web API, which you could then have Appian access and store locally without needing to mess with the SFTP plug-in.
Just to add to the options here, if you are only importing raw CSV/Excel data and have access to work in your SQL server, we're moved toward a mechanism of utilizing DB scripts to import the data from the file system to SQL, then pulling it into Appian with a!queryEntity(). We have probably 10+ feeds, some that run on a 3x/day schedule with that type of setup.
I think a FTP solution is the best solution in the long term. The Web API idea is also good but I think in our case is not the best because we would be uploading documents from the file system that are produced by the customer, not the other way around.
Thanks for all your ideas, very useful, like always.
Thanks Chris, copying the data directly into the DB through a script is also a good idea. I never thought about it.
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