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List rows present in a table locks Excel file after flow completes

I have a flow that reads rows in an Excel file stored in SharePoint and updates SharePoint items based on the Excel data found. It doesn't update the Excel file at any point.

 

I use the "List rows present in a table locks Excel" Excel Online (Business) action.

 

I want to be able to delete the Excel file soon after the Flow has completed, but currently in the SharePoint UI I get a message that "The file is currently checked out or locked for editing by another user.". This prevents me from deleting the file, even if I am the person listed as the user that has the file checked out.

 

Is there an easy way (not powershell) for the end user to unlock the file?

6 REPLIES 6
Community Support
Community Support

Hi @DavidG,

 

I have made a test on my side and the issue is confirmed on my side.

I would post this issue to my product team, if the issue is solved, I will reply here.

 

Best regards,

Alice

 

Community Support
Community Support

Hi @DavidG,

 

I get the feedback that it is an known limitations for Excel Online (Business) and Excel Online (Onedrive) connector that an Excel file may be locked for an update or delete up to 1 hour since the last use of the connector.

 

Please refer to link below:

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/connectors/excelonlinebusiness/

 

Please mark your post as solved if your question is answered.

 

 

Best regards,

Alice

 

I'm sorry but the above is simply not correct.  The file can, and often is, locked for WELL OVER an hour.  In many cases it appears that 24 hours is more the norm.  Why is this issue, that was brought up over a year ago, still not being dealt with?  As an example, I've built a flow that needs to create a table out of existing data (an existing range) in a specific worksheet (a fresh nightmare that I won't get into here).  Then the flow needs to List those rows so that I can filter the resulting array to include in an email.  Setting "Configure Run After" and "Asynchronous Pattern" to off does nothing.  It always fails to even update the initial resource because a lock gets placed on the file.  Somehow, this even prevents me from creating an ENTIRELY new file and then using that as my base document.  It's like Flow (PowerAutomate) decides you are now blacklisted from running any and all flows.  It's insane.  Something that should make life easier and only take a few mins/hours to put in place - ends up taking days or weeks depending on how lucky you are with the lock/unlock sequence.  I work for a medium sized privately owned company that relies on the ability to automate adhoc tasks that fall outside the scope of our enterprise programs and apps.  I thought Flow could be a go-to.  But it just isn't. 

 Tried to include image of failed flow - but even the ms flow forum post is unfriendly....apparently my imgur link is not valid HTML....

 

I am experiencing this same issue.. I can use the list rows actions with no errors, but later in the Flow, I use update file properties to update a column associated with two different files.  At that point the Flow files showing the file is locked by me (the Excel Business connector is using my credentials).  From what I am seeing, people have developed very complicated workarounds, but I have not seen a real solution (despite a bunch of posts marked as being solved).

Helper IV
Helper IV

An update to my previous message is that I added a delay step of 7 minutes in my Flow (another user had suggested 6 minutes), between the List rows action (first time the Excel file is accessed by Flow), and then a later update file properties action.  This 7 minute delay seems to work, although I suspect it would not give consistent results for all users and all SharePoint platforms.

This worked for me, but the problem is I could complete the flow by hand in a few minutes, so it's basically worthless at that point.

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