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Turning off Flow and turning back on still create new instances of Flow

 

Currently we are working on a bunch of flow automation logic with SharePoint connectors. The issue we have is that flow queues SharePoint list item changes even when the flow is turned off. Since we have many SharePoint metadata that are updated in bulk while testing, there are many flows that are triggered on error data after turned on. We don't want this to happen. When we turn off the flow, we want it to not run later.

When we turn off the flow, we want it to not run later.

Status: Under Review

Thank you for the suggestion. As is covered in the comments this is not a bug but an important feature to avoid data loss -- this allows you to temporarily disable a flow, make corrections, and then enable the flow, running it over all of the events that happened in the interim. Without this functionality all of those business critical events would be lost.

 

That being said, there may be scenarios where you want to explicitly discard your business data -- to support that case we'll look at adding an option to delete the trigger data so you can start again from scratch.

Comments
ihanz
Frequent Visitor

Very bothersome 'feature' PA team! We now need to bend in all impossible ways to avoid unwanted processing of the 'interim items'. If you really want to help then give us the option to choose between "off" and "hold and queue"! Should not take you over two years! Not impressed

 

So, now I've added a dedicated trigger condition to my flows that trigger on item/file modified. This to ensure that a flow only runs when the date/time modified is max 1 hour ago. Older, queued updates are now supposed to fail:

@greater(formatDateTime(triggerBody()?['Modified'],'yyyy-MM-ddThh:mm'), formatDateTime(addHours(utcNow(), -1,'yyyy-MM-ddThh:mm')))

 

so much for a so called no-code solution

better ideas are welcome

KrishnanP
Frequent Visitor

We had a make a bulk update to a SharePoint List, but didn't want to trigger flows tied to it. So, all we did was to turn off those flows before doing the bulk edit and turned them back on after finishing the bulk edit.

Our presumption, based on SharePoint 2013 workflows, was wrong and the flows got triggered soon after we turned them back on. 

This is a basic requirement and I am not sure why Microsoft has kept this under review for almost three years now. If there is a design complication, MS can at least warn users with a workaround when turning off the flows.

cdn4lf
Resolver I

To me, off means off.  If I wanted to pause the flow while I edited something, I would assume there is a pause button. 

 

At no time should off mean pause.  While the devs may say this is an important feature, the wording is the source of the bug.  Change the term to pause in the interim. so that people don't assume the flow is off and not going to resume where it left off (pause).

chiguypaul
Helper I

I was burned by this today. Received over 100 approval notifications I had to go through after importing in data to a SharePoint list while the Flow was turned off. Off means off.

MP_Squared
Helper I

I've run into the same issue as well, I thought off meant off! Boy was I wrong.  For my particular scenario, I had 3 complex flows attached to a sharepoint list. Instead of saving them as a copy, I found that pointing the automated triggers to another sharepoint list, migrating data and then pointing the 3 triggers back to the list worked for me. 

 

Hope this can help others. 

ellix
Regular Visitor

Anticipating.

adhuy
New Member

Yes. We had a poor customer experience due to this functionality. We crafted a Flow that sends notifications when new items are added to a SharePoint list. When the solution was deployed we (1) turned off the Flow and (2) migrated old data into the solution because notifications were not necessary. When the Flow was turned back on for future additions, it sent notifications specific to the several hundred items we had migrated into the solution. This caused confusion and frustration.

chiguypaul
Helper I

This could easily be communicated to users by Microsoft popping up an alert upon turning a rule off to let people know that any activity while the rule is turned off will be processed again if it is turned on. 

stephen_dapt
Regular Visitor

This is absolutely needed. What happens if you need to import old data into a list but don't want it to run on the historic data. Seems illogical that this was never an option. Surely it should have been designed to run against all items since being turned off rather than just assuming you want it to run against all data.

UserofPowerAuto
New Member

Can we please get an update on this issue? I too have turned off a flow only to turn it back "on". Then my customers are getting alerts that are very old causing LOTS of confusion. Can we please get an update on this @Stephen . This has been going on way way too long.