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Re: Format Date to Use in Link Field

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Jason_F
6 - Interface Innovator
6 - Interface Innovator

I am having major problems all of the sudden with a link field automation that uses a date.

Let me start by saying if I copy and paste my date from one table into the link field it works fine.

If I try to do it via. Automation I keep getting an error that says this field can not accept that input.

Seems to be a recent problem. Any help? This is breaking a ton of stuff for me.

19 Replies 19
Jason_F
6 - Interface Innovator
6 - Interface Innovator

The basic question at the root of all of this is if Date is the only thing I have as a linking unique identifier how do I use that?

Dates should work, as I’m sure that you’re not the only user with a date in the primary field of a table used in a linking relationship. Whether or not that date works comes down to the specifics of your setup, and so far we’ve had your descriptions of parts of the setup, but not a look at the setup itself. The more details that you can share—specifically screenshots—the sooner we can hone in on the core of the issue.

I can’t share details as I have done way too many customizations at this point.

I was able to make it work by going back into my base and changing the first column from a date to single line text and then formatting the 2nd column to just make it a date for other purposes.

A huge pain as I now have to go through every view and formula to update but it did work.

ScottWorld
18 - Pluto
18 - Pluto

Okay, I just tested this, and it seems like this is a bug on Airtable’s end.

Automations will work properly if you try to paste the date into a normal date field, a normal text field, a select field, etc.

But if you try to paste a date into a linked record field, it will only work if you are pasting in a value that ALREADY PRE-EXISTS IN THE OTHER TABLE. If you try to paste in a new value that doesn’t already pre-exist in the other table, the automation will fail.

It seems like Airtable forgot to enable their very own “typecast” feature, which allows you to paste BRAND NEW VALUES into linked record fields. (Although “typecast” also applies to single-select fields and multiple-select fields as well, and those seem to work just fine.)

I would report this as a bug to Airtable.

Alternatively, just have the automation create the new record in the other table first, and link that new record back to the record in the master table. That would be the easiest solution. 

And you can always use Make's automations & integrations for Airtable to handle your automations. Just be sure to enable their “smart links” option, which enables Airtable’s “typecast” feature.

I’m also tagging @Adam_Minich and @Rose_K on this thread, so hopefully they can have their engineers fix this bug ASAP.

Thanks Scott. Mine wasn’t working even with already existing records, but either way great catch!

I was able to get around this by using a Create record action to create a new record with the desired date, and then link to it with an Update record action, but obviously for cases where the link needs to be made to an existing record, that’s not going to work.

Another option would be to use a script action to do the linking, which will work because it uses the record ID and not the field contents.

Nice workarounds, @Justin_Barrett! Thanks!

Adam_Minich
Airtable Employee
Airtable Employee

@Jason_F

Did you already submit a support ticket? If not, then I’ll file an escalation with our engineers to have them take a look at this.

Thanks for flagging @ScottWorld

I did already submit something to them.

Okay, I will check to see where that is at and step in if necessary. Cheers~~