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Base: run query on connected spreadsheet?

asked 2017-09-29 02:11:58 +0200

DinoGuy gravatar image

updated 2020-08-10 00:26:50 +0200

Alex Kemp gravatar image


I created a a Base database that links to a huge .ods spreadsheet of weather data organized into date, time, and temperature fields. The link works fine and creates a properly formatted table in which I can see all the data.

The problem occurs when I try to run a query on the table. I want to display the maximum daily temperatures. So I add the date and temp fields to the query. But when I try to access the GROUP or MAXIMUM functions in the drop-down menu, I find the drop-down menu is empty. In fact, there are no functions available in queries at all.

Am I doing something wrong, or is this a limitation of connected databases in Base?

Is there a work-around?

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answered 2017-09-29 03:47:25 +0200

Ratslinger gravatar image

updated 2017-09-29 03:59:22 +0200

There are many limitations with Base tables which are linked from spreadsheets. One is that query functions are limited to COUNT(*) - that's it.

Turning Base into an actual database by creating a table with the sheet data (have to start with a new Base file) you get all the functions. You register the DB then you can access the data from a spreadsheet via Data Sources.


I should add, the table data in your Base file is basically a text file (internally specified as file-based-database). There is no real database associated with this process. The functions you are looking for are in the database which in the case of a default base file would be HSQLDB.

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answered 2017-09-29 04:34:04 +0200

DinoGuy gravatar image

Okay. Thanks for the answers.

I wanted to use a connected spreadsheet because the dataset is very large (10 fields, 268,000 records, 14Mb filesize) and Base becomes slow and very unstable when I try to bring the data into an HSQLDB embedded database.

I'm guessing by your reply then it is infeasible for me to work with this dataset in Base?

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An embedded DB is certainly not the way to go for something this size. And you are correct in its' instability. However a split DB would be a better solution. See this post to create a new empty split DB - click here. Also, this includes a newer version of HSQLDB providing better SQL functionality.

Ratslinger gravatar imageRatslinger ( 2017-09-29 05:23:59 +0200 )edit

@DinoGuy In the future, please reply to an answer with a comment to the answer you are replying to (can be multiple answers). If room is needed to further explain a question, edit your question.

Ratslinger gravatar imageRatslinger ( 2017-09-29 05:30:09 +0200 )edit
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Asked: 2017-09-29 02:11:58 +0200

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Last updated: Sep 29 '17