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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 Microsoft CDS provides formulas that can edit, save, and delete Microsoft CDS data.The following three steps show how you can automate the following task: Search Microsoft CDS 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 Microsoft CDS data records you want to retrieve or the modifications to be made, written in standard SQL.
  • Connection: Either the connection name, such as CDSConnection1, or a connection string. The connection string consists of the required properties for connecting to Microsoft CDS data, separated by semicolons.

    You can connect without setting any connection properties for your user credentials. Below are the minimum connection properties required to connect.

    • InitiateOAuth: Set this to GETANDREFRESH. You can use InitiateOAuth to avoid repeating the OAuth exchange and manually setting the OAuthAccessToken.
    • OrganizationUrl: Set this to the organization URL you are connecting to, such as https://myorganization.crm.dynamics.com.
    • Tenant (optional): Set this if you wish to authenticate to a different tenant than your default. This is required to work with an organization not on your default Tenant.

    When you connect the Common Data Service OAuth endpoint opens in your default browser. Log in and grant permissions. The OAuth process completes automatically.

  • 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 Microsoft CDS data, such as Name.
  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 Accounts WHERE Name = '"&B2&"'","OrganizationUrl="&B1&";Provider=CDS",B3)
  4. Change the filter to change the data.