I am still somewhat annoyed after reading this morning that the Access web apps are being retired. A critical application for my company is an Access Web App... But we will have to make the switch to PowerApps, no use in being annoyed i guess. But as i am a total newbie in the field of powerapps, i have a few questions before i start reading the "introduction to power apps for access web app developers":
Looking forward to your thoughts and answers!
I just started using PowerApps myself but I think I have some insight to your questions.
Powerapps can be run straight from the browser or used within the actual powerapps (windows 10 only?) so yes, you can definitely make it more for the desktop first. On my desktop the browser version is identical to the iPad app version.
From what I've seen the short answer is kind of. PowerApps allows you to build collections/tables similar to Access, but honestly I've been using SQL as the backend and it's considerably easier to work with to build proper relational databases. PowerApps isn't a database program at it's core, but it works with many data sources and I think you'll find it's very limited.
My suggestion is get some test data setup and play around in it to get some idea of PowerApps limitations (there are many!)
Yes, there are some options to link directly to Sharepoint stored excel sheets but not network shares. It would be worth trying it out yourself to again see what limitations it has but I've had success setting up an excel sheet as a data source but it has to reside in an acceptable location for PowerApps to link to (i.e. Sharepoint).
I would suggest looking at SQL since you can setup a "linked server" directly to a shared excel workbook and effortlessly pull data in from there.
I think you will find this won't work but you may find a solution to pulling data in but from what I've seen you cannot even print from PowerApps at this time.
Hope that helps a bit!
I second JRaasumaa's advice about setting up a SQL server. Our experience using the Common Data Service was horrendous with several catastrophic data losses (and the CDM offers no logs, transactional data, or tools to diagnose the problem)
A word of warning: All of our production apps have been down for almost 24 hours, so I would be cautious of developing within PowerApps. We will likely switch back to web apps soon because of the ongoing issues and poor documentation/communication from Microsoft when these issues arise.
Best of luck!
When you say "back to web apps", what do you mean?
I have been experimenting a lot with PowerApps as a solution to the demise of Access Web Apps, but am so frustrated by the lack of communication from Microsoft that I am looking for an alternative.
I guess we just have to hope that they get their act together at some point. Access Web Apps is out, InfoPath is out... it seems a bit premature without a reasonably stable alternative.
I'm in the same boat. My application had 7 related tables and the ability to quickly query and make changes. It was desktop-first (a must for our workgroup) and very easy to use. A lot of time was spent putting it together and sharing it with other work groups.
Now I'm literally back to the drawing board and trying to find a way to make PowerApps work. It seems that even following the "simple" creation steps from a SharePoint list, I'm not finding that all of the columns are populating.
Would be great if there were some 'office hours' once a week to allow people like us to get help getting started so we can sing praises of the platform and not just shouts of frustration.
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