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Excel Spreadsheet Automation with the QUERY Formula

Pull data, automate spreadsheets, and more with the QUERY formula.

The CData Excel Add-In for provides formulas that can edit, save, and delete data. The following three steps show how you can automate the following task: Search data for a user-specified value and then organize the results into an Excel spreadsheet.

The syntax of the CDATAQUERY formula is the following: =CDATAQUERY(Query, [Connection], [Parameters], [ResultLocation]);

This formula requires three inputs:

  • Query: The declaration of the data records you want to retrieve or the modifications to be made, written in standard SQL.
  • Connection: Either the connection name, such as AvalaraAvataxConnection1, or a connection string. The connection string consists of the required properties for connecting to data, separated by semicolons.

    The primary method for performing basic authentication is to provide your login credentials, as follows:

    • User: Set this to your username.
    • Password: Set this to your password.

    Optionally, if you are making use of a sandbox environment, set the following:

    • UseSandbox: Set this to true if you are authenticating with a sandbox account.

    Authenticating Using Account Number and License Key

    Alternatively, you can authenticate using your account number and license key. Connect to data using the following:

    • AccountId: Set this to your Account Id. The Account Id is listed in the upper right hand corner of the admin console.
    • LicenseKey: Set this to your Avalara Avatax license key. You can generate a license key by logging into Avalara Avatax as an account adminstrator and navigating to Settings -> Reset License Key.
  • ResultLocation: The cell that the output of results should start from.

Pass Spreadsheet Cells as Inputs to the Query

The procedure below results in a spreadsheet that organizes all the formula inputs in the first column.

  1. Define cells for the formula inputs. In addition to the connection inputs, add another input to define a criterion for a filter to be used to search data, such as Code.
  2. In another cell, write the formula, referencing the cell values from the user input cells defined above. Single quotes are used to enclose values such as addresses that may contain spaces.
  3. =CDATAQUERY("SELECT * FROM Transactions WHERE Code = '"&B3&"'","User="&B1&";Password="&B2&";Provider=AvalaraAvatax",B4)
  4. Change the filter to change the data.