Airtable Importer: Google Spreadsheets add-on

@Dmitry_Pliska I’m loving using this for a lot of my smaller bases. I’ve been able to set up some easy reporting for my team without the headaches I was getting from working with the api as a json object. So far, if I had one wish, I would modify either the manual refresh or automated resync.

Since the addon clears the contents of the sheet, I have another sheet running filters and other formulas on the import sheet. From my second sheet, I can’t seem to manually refresh the airtable data. Granted, I could just click over to the import sheet and manually hit the refresh; However, for other reasons, I keep the import sheet hidden. The rest of my team doesn’t know how to hide or unhide sheets much less install or use add-ons with sheets.

All that to say, I think it would be great to be able to be able to manually re-import from another sheet or set the auto sync timer to something shorter than an hour.

@Larry_Price thanks for detailed feedback!
Great to know it helps you to get rid of some headaches :slight_smile:

Yes, our intention was that original imported sheet is kept by itself and another sheet just imports data from it using spreadsheets referring (e.g. using importrange) and performs needed calculations on imported data.

Setting manual timer is something we consider for implementation as well but still hold it back for a while since validation of that field may complicate the flow.

Additionally, now sidebar shows current sheet title it imports data into. And “Add-ons” menu for Airtable Importer has an options “Re-Import this sheet” without opening the sidebar (if you have few imported sheets per spreadsheet, you can use “Re-Import all sheets” option).

Ah, I hadn’t noticed the re-import all. That will definitely work. “Re-Import this sheet” only works on the import sheet, which makes sense. Right now we have import all or import single active one. How difficult would it be to index all your import sheets so you can select which one to update instead of updating all at once? I’m just thinking that it is possible that I might have 10 to 15 import sheets in some cases.

@Larry_Price yes, we thought about this as well but your vote adds the count :slight_smile:

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@Larry_Price im glad to inform that v32 of Airtable Importer (released today) includes “Re-Import sheet” from imported sheets index in the nested menu. Just select “Add-ons > Airtable Importer by Railsware > Re-Import sheet > ${sheet_name}” and job will be done on background. Selected sheet should not be active at this moment.

Hope it helps :slight_smile:

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@Dmitry_Pliska That’s Brilliant!

Very useful extension to Airtable thank you, particularly the easy refresh. This beats having to re-download an Airtable csv.

It would be good if the auto refresh interval could be longer than one hour as I left my sheet open during the day while I was doing other things and when got back to my PC, there was a message that I had exceeded 12 (I think it was) refreshes and was blocked from doing any more.

@Dmitry_Pliska This add on is awesome, thanks for making it publicly available! I’m using it to add visualisation capabilities to Airtable, so now it’s possible to have dashboards connected to airtable data which is great. Also, I’ve been sending airtable data all the way to Google Data Studio via a google sheet, with the help of your add on :slight_smile:

I’ve got a specific use case which I wonder if you folks can help with. For spreadsheets which have multiple Airtable data sources coming in to different tabs, it seems that we hit errors on the automatic refresh function. In the sidebar, I see a message like: you have too many time-based triggers for this google account.

To get around this problem, is there a way we can refresh ALL the sheets by using a single time-based trigger? I had an idea of attaching my own script to the spreadsheet that triggers the ‘re-import all sheets’ menu item every day… but I can’t figure out if scripts can trigger menu items :frowning:

Hi everyone! I started using Airtable Importer this afternoon and I was totally excited when I saw it working. Now, when playing around with it at home I see strange behavior of the add-on: The menu suddenly only shows “help”. The sidebar seems gone, too. Maybe it’s because I have deleted my shared link in Airtable? Unfortunately I cannot reset Airtable Importer. What happened?

Looking forward to help.

Thanks & best regards,

Kai

Hi Kai,
Thank you for the good feedback.

In order to solve your issue, most likely you just need to make sure you did enable the add-on for the particular spreadsheet like shown here:

Hi Rupert,

As far as I know, this is not possible for the time-based triggers. If that makes it any easier, we do have “re-import all sheets” menu item within the add-on menu but its manual.

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Solved! Thanks a lot Dmitry. I don’t know why but I had to sign off from my Google account and re-login. All fine!

K

Fantastic! Thank you!

@Dmitry_Pliska I’m getting an issue with the add on. It gives me the following error:

Error: Request failed: https://airtable-proxy-server.herokuapp.com/?sharedUrl=https://airtable.com

It doesn’t matter what base I try to use it from, so I cut off the rest of the sharing link there, but I do give it a full valid link. Please advise.

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Hi Larry,
Sorry for inconvenience, sometimes server goes down. Just restarted it, should work fine.

Hi @Dmitry_Pliska!
Thanks for this awesome Add on.

Question, is it possible to have Airtable only update the columns that are actually in Airtable? Meaning, if Airtable only has 3 columns, and I have 7 columns in Sheets, whatever is in column 7 will still get erased upon update from the Add on, even though there is no 7th column in Airtable. Is there a way to protect data added in Sheets so that it doesn’t get erased when the update goes through?

Thanks!

Hi, no, add-on just re-imports Airtable data and overwrites the whole sheet.
As a solution, I would suggest you to follow approach we are using in the company:

  • all sheets that are filled with Airtable imports are left “as is”, so called “datasource”, with no formulas etc.
  • at another sheet use references like =datasource!A1:L38 and use this sheet as you want since it’ll never be overwritten by Airtable Importer

Hope it helps :slight_smile:

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google spreadsheets is able to export (export) airtable data with this application

Hi,

Just installed this today.

It pulled the data for the first time and since has show the following error.

Script Error - No item with the given ID or you dont have permission.

Jason…

Thank you, Jason for your interest in our add-on! We’re in touch in support tread. Hope you’ll get the issue resolved soon.
Pavel Pavlovsky
Product Manager at Railsware