Create Excel-Connected Nintex Workflows

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CData Connect

Fully-integrated Microsoft Excel Add-Ins that connect Excel with live data.



Use CData Connect Cloud to connect to Excel from Nintex Workflow Cloud and build custom workflows using live Excel data.

Nintex Workflow Cloud is a cloud-based platform where you can design workflows to automate simple or complex processes using drag-and-drop interactions — without writing any code. When paired with CData Connect Cloud, you get instant, cloud-to-cloud access to Excel data for business applications. This article shows how to create a virtual database for Excel in Connect Cloud and build a simple workflow from Excel data in Nintex.

CData Connect Cloud provides a pure MySQL, cloud-to-cloud interface for Excel, allowing you to build workflows from live Excel data in Nintex Workflow Cloud — without replicating the data to a natively supported database. Nintex allows you to access data directly using SQL queries. Using optimized data processing out of the box, CData Connect Cloud pushes all supported SQL operations (filters, JOINs, etc.) directly to Excel, leveraging server-side processing to quickly return the requested Excel data.

Create a Virtual MySQL Database for Excel Data

CData Connect Cloud uses a straightforward, point-and-click interface to connect to data sources and generate APIs.

  1. Log into Connect Cloud and click Databases.
  2. Select "Excel" from Available Data Sources.
  3. Enter the necessary authentication properties to connect to Excel.

    The ExcelFile, under the Authentication section, must be set to a valid Excel File.

  4. Click Test Database.
  5. Click Privileges -> Add and add the new user (or an existing user) with the appropriate permissions.

With the virtual database created, you are ready to connect to Excel data from Nintex.

Connect to Excel in Nintex

The steps below outline creating a new connection for access to Excel CData Connect Cloud from Nintex to create a new Excel data source.

  1. Log into Nintex Workflow Cloud
  2. In the Connections tab, click "Add new"
  3. Select MySQL as the connector and click "Connect"
  4. In the MySQL connection wizard, set the following properties:
    • Connection Name: name the connection (e.g., CData Connect Cloud Excel Connection)
    • Username: your Connect Cloud username
    • Password: your Connect Cloud password
    • Database Host: your Connect Cloud MySQL endpoint (e.g., myinstance.cdatacloud.net)
    • Database Name: the virtual Excel database (e.g., Excel1)
  5. Click "Connect"
  6. Configure the connection permissions and click "Save permissions"

Create a Simple Excel Workflow

With the connection to CData Connect Cloud configured, we are ready to build a simple workflow to access Excel data. Start by clicking the "Create workflow" button.

Configure the Start Event Action

  1. Click the start event task and select the "Form" event
  2. Click "Design form"
  3. Drag a "Text - Long" element onto the Form and click the element to configure it
    • Set "Title" to "Enter SQL query"
    • Set "Required" to true
  4. Drag a "Text - Short" element onto the Form and click the element to configure it
    • Set "Title" to "Enter desired result column"
    • Set "Required" to true

Configure an "Execute a Query" Action

  1. Add an "Execute a query" action after the "Start event: Form" action and click to configure the action
  2. Set "SQL Script" to the "Enter SQL Query" variable from the "Start event" action
  3. Set "Column to retrieve" to the "Enter desired result column" variable from the "Start event" action
  4. Set "Retrieved column" to a new variable (e.g., "values")

Configure a "Send an Email" Action

  1. Add a "Send an email" action after the "Execute a query" action and click to configure the action
  2. Set the "Recipient email address"
  3. Set the "Subject"
  4. Set the "Message body" to the variable created for the retrieved column

Once you configure the actions, click "Save," name the Workflow, and click "Save" again. You now have a simple workflow that will query Excel using SQL and send an email with the results.

To learn more about SQL data access to 200+ SaaS, Big Data, and NoSQL sources directly from your cloud applications, check out the CData Connect Cloud. Sign up for a free trial and reach out to our Support Team if you have any questions.