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SharePoint 2010 designer workflow and BCS (empty external data column) RRS feed

  • Question

  • I have two lists. Both with an external data column, with the same BCS source (for instance: customer). A list item is created in List A with the external data column set to the customer Contoso. A workflow start which will create a list item in List B and set the external content type to the same value as the external data column of the item in List A.

    The item in list B is created. When i open the display form of the item the value of the external data column is set to Contoso. So far so good. But when i edit the item, the external data column is empty!! ehhh?

    Has anybody encountered this issue?

    Friday, July 23, 2010 1:19 AM

All replies

  • Marc, I'm experiencing almost the same issue.

    After an item is changed in list A, a record is added to list B. List B has one external data column. I add data to that field and if you view the item you see the data. After editing it the data disappears and it's not matched to an item from the externa content.

    Is there a method where you can use a workflow to set the value of an externa data type column??

    Friday, July 30, 2010 2:45 PM
  • Hi,

    now we are three. I hve the same problems with the external data column.

    I have two lists, one is an external list which shows data from a SQL db and the other list is a document library which has an external data column to the first list. I created a webpart in VS2010 and programmatically create items in the document library. when i fill the external data column i can see the content when i view the element. but when i try to modify it it's emtpy.

    Has anybody a solution or workaround?

     

    Tuesday, August 3, 2010 10:47 AM
  • How is your BCS authentication set up for the external content type?

    By default workflow uses service account to access the external data, in which case if you haven't given access to the service account to access the external data, it will fail. You need to set up a Secure Store Service application ID and use either Impersonate Windows Identity or Impersonate Custom Identity based on how you connect to your external data source.

     


    Regards,
    Chakkaradeep || SharePoint Solutions Specialist - MCTS SharePoint Dev, WSS Dev, MCPD SharePoint Developer 2010
    http://www.intergen.co.nz || Twitter: http://twitter.com/chakkaradeep || http://www.chakkaradeep.com
    Monday, August 16, 2010 6:46 AM
  • Chakkaradeep,

    Thanks for your reply. I have the external content type set up with the SSS. The Secure Storce Service application uses Impersonate WIndows Identity. All domain users are specified as members in the Secure Storce Service application. Also all domain users have execute permissions on the BDC object. The service account (IIS app pool) is a domain user.

    I have created a test account (only member of the domain users). This test account can succesfully select an entity in the external data column.

    Have you got the workflow running succesfully?

    Marc

    Monday, August 16, 2010 9:12 AM
  • Hi Marc, I can replicate your problem and have send the feedback to the product team. I also have others who can replicate the same problem.

    So I think it is safe to assume it is a bug unless we are not doing it right :)

    If I get any updates, will reply here.


    Regards,
    Chakkaradeep || SharePoint Solutions Specialist - MCTS SharePoint Dev, WSS Dev, MCPD SharePoint Developer 2010
    http://www.intergen.co.nz || Twitter: http://twitter.com/chakkaradeep || http://www.chakkaradeep.com
    Tuesday, August 17, 2010 9:34 PM
  • Chakkaradeep,

    I have found a similiar issue with the same column (probably the same issue but without a workflow).

    When i

    1. create a calendar
    2. add an external data column
    3. create a new event with recurrence (and the external data column set to Contoso)
    4. Move a single event (from the reccuring event) directly in the calendar

    the external data column of the single event is empty.

    Marc

    Saturday, August 21, 2010 12:23 PM
  • Hi Marc, I can replicate your problem and have send the feedback to the product team. I also have others who can replicate the same problem.

    So I think it is safe to assume it is a bug unless we are not doing it right :)

    If I get any updates, will reply here.


    Regards,
    Chakkaradeep || SharePoint Solutions Specialist - MCTS SharePoint Dev, WSS Dev, MCPD SharePoint Developer 2010
    http://www.intergen.co.nz || Twitter: http://twitter.com/chakkaradeep || http://www.chakkaradeep.com

    Any updates? I have the same problem as this post still 6 months later...? My external list will populate the field, but it returns a null value instead of the data there. I can view the list without any problems, and i can view the individual item that i'm trying to pull into my list. The difference here is that the list I am using is not an external list, but the source of the data that will be populated into the local list is from an external content list. I have tried to setup the SSS with very little success. I'm just using a localhost connection to adventureworksDW for 2008 R2 with my own login credentials with no success here. 
    Thursday, February 3, 2011 5:14 PM
  • Same here. I'm having the exact same problem and was positive I was doing something wrong until I found this. How can something like this be overlooked and, after finding out about the problem, still not have a resolution 10 months later???

     

    Mike

    Thursday, May 12, 2011 10:03 PM
  • same problem here. It's been a year now since this was brought to product team.  What's up?

    Josh

    Friday, June 17, 2011 5:27 PM
  • Chak,

    Do you have any update on this problem?

    Tia,

    Josh

    Friday, July 15, 2011 2:00 PM
  • Has anyone worked around this issue?  Is there even anyway to set the value of an external field in workflow?
    Monday, August 22, 2011 8:27 PM
  • Same problem here...
    Friday, February 10, 2012 12:48 PM
  • Please let it not be so.

    Add me to the primal scream.

    Wednesday, March 14, 2012 11:04 PM
  • After many hours of head scratching I finally found a workaround.

    Like the original poster I had two lists. List A and List B both with a column to the same BCS data.

    If you tell SPD to populate the BCS data column in List B from the BCS data column in List B it won't work. (It does actually copy a name in the field but the link to the BCS data is not actually created). This is because it also needs to have an ID entered in the [yourBCSdataname]_id field.

    Annoyingly SPD will let you read from this id field but it won't let you write to it.

    My workaround therefore was to write the id field from List A into a temporary field in List B. To make things a bit easier for me I also copied the display name of the BCS item to a temporary field in List B. Upon item creation in List B I then fired a visual studio designed workflow to copy the data from the temporary field into the id field in List B. The code was relatively simple:

                SPListItem item = workflowProperties.Item;

                item["MyBCSData_ID"] = item["tempid"].ToString();

                item["MyBCSDataField"] = item["tempname"].ToString();

                item.Update();

    Note: If you have any additional BCS fields displayed these won't automatically be populated. You will need to refresh the BCS data for this to happen. There is code out there to do that, but it wasn't an issue for me I was purely concerned with getting the link created on that one field.

    Hope that helps someone!

    • Proposed as answer by maphisto Wednesday, July 11, 2012 3:52 PM
    Wednesday, July 11, 2012 3:46 PM