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David8
Resolver I
Resolver I

SharePoint Multiline Text Input Control with Appended Text

I have a multiline text box in SharePoint to capture general comments from Power Apps using SharePoint's appended text feature, and it works as I want it to. However, when I retrieve the information using a Lookup in PowerApps, my form only picks up the last entry submitted to SharePoint. The other appended text items aren't visible. Is there a way I can call all of the text items in a multiline text box?

 

I did notice that each item of text is assigned a version number when it is entered in SharePoint. Here is a screenshot of a test. PowerApps only retrieves version 3072.

 

David8_0-1628276911594.png

This is appended text.

David8_3-1628277079551.png

 

This is for Appending Text

David8_2-1628277038472.png

 

This is for Test.

David8_1-1628276958702.png

 

 

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Accepted Solutions
Pstork1
Most Valuable Professional
Most Valuable Professional

The append to Text functionality in SharePoint is special.  It stores each comment in the field as a specific comment for that version.  Then at runtime it retrieves all the back versions and combines the output.  Power apps doesn't know how to do that so you only get the most recent comment.  I have used an HTTP REST call in a flow to retrieve all the versions and get the comments to return to Power apps, but its pretty labor intensive.



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Thank you for your feedback. This information was helpful.

 

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Pstork1
Most Valuable Professional
Most Valuable Professional

The append to Text functionality in SharePoint is special.  It stores each comment in the field as a specific comment for that version.  Then at runtime it retrieves all the back versions and combines the output.  Power apps doesn't know how to do that so you only get the most recent comment.  I have used an HTTP REST call in a flow to retrieve all the versions and get the comments to return to Power apps, but its pretty labor intensive.



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ahlavertySOC
Frequent Visitor

@Pstork1 - Can you show the steps for this?

Pstork1
Most Valuable Professional
Most Valuable Professional

Here's screenshots of the basic process

image.png

1) I call the flow from a Power App and pass in the name of the column, the list, and the item ID

2) I create a variable with some base HTML to hold the comments

3) I use a REST call to retrieve all the previous versions of the item.

image.png

4) I Parse the output of the REST call to access the individual versions and columns in the versions

5) I loop through the versions and append the results of the specific column to the string variable.  I include the date/time when it was made and the author with the comment

6) I return the string variable to the Power App where it is displayed in a Rich Text field.

 

I hope that helps.

 

One thing I learned since I made this example is that inside the loop you should check to make sure this revision contains something in the column. If people edit other things in the item it will create a new revision, but there won't be appended text.  That check isn't in this demo.



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ahlavertySOC
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@Pstork1 Thanks I got it to work, but it still shows when the column is null. How do I not show that when it's null.

Pstork1
Most Valuable Professional
Most Valuable Professional

In the loop you need to check to see if that column is null in that version before appending anything to the variable for that particular loop.  Or you can do a filter array on the versions that are returned before entering the loop. But that normally requires a second parse JSON to get access to the fields in the filtered results.



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ahlavertySOC
Frequent Visitor

@Pstork1 - I tried the condition

items('Apply to Each')[variables('ColumnName')]

is equal to 'null', but I'm getting an error: 

Flow save failed with code 'InvalidTemplate' and message 'The template validation failed: 'The repetition action(s) 'Apply to Each' referenced by 'inputs' in action 'Condition' are not defined in the template.'.'
 
Pstork1
Most Valuable Professional
Most Valuable Professional

It would be 

items('Apply to Each')?['ColumnName']

for whatever the Column name actually is.



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