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Show SQL Server table inside Nintex Form

Workflow Hero
5 3 1,222

Ever wondered how to display SQL table inside your Nintex Form? Indeed, there is the “SQL Request” action, but it only allows you to show data from database as a dropdown, list of options, etc… and always – just a single column.

However there is an easy solution for that. The approach I am using includes usage of the “FOR XML” command in a SELECT statement (source). It is available in SQL Server starting from version 2008. It returns data from a query using an XML format, concatenated in a single row, in a single column. Perfect format to parse it!

Step by step

1. First prepare your SELECT query. Mine is for example:

  1. SELECT TOP(1) (SELECT name, lastname, email, role
  2. FROM users
  3. RIGHT JOIN roles ON roles.Id = users.roleId
  4. ORDER BY lastname ASC
  5. FOR XML) as datatable FROM users

With such statement I am sure, that I will receive just a single row and column, that will return the data in a proper XML format. Each row will be built using the following structure:

  1. <name>value</name><lastname>value</lastname><email>value</email><role>value</role><name>value</name><lastname>value</lastname><email>value</email><role>value</role>...

Put the query in the “SQL Request” control inside your form:

SQL Request action Nintex Forms

Set the field not to be visible. It is not going to be used directly.

2. Now add a “Calculated Value” control. It will be used to get the output from the “SQL Request” and parse it into a valid table. I am using the following formula to achieve it:

  1. '<table class="dataTable"><thead><tr><th>Name</th><th>Lastname</th><th>Email</th><th>Role</th></tr></thead><tbody>'+replace(replace(replace(replace(SQL REQUEST CONTROL NAME, '</role><name>', '</td></tr><tr><td>'),'\<\/(?!td|tr)[a-zA-Z]+\>\<(?!td|tr)[a-zA-Z]+\>','</td><td>'), '</role>', '</td></tr>'), '<name>', '<tr><td>')+'</tbody></table>'

It simply creates a ready to use HTML table. It replaces ending and starting XML tags to starting and ending <tr><td> tags (to mark start and end of each row).

3. Next define a CSS styles for your table. I used the following page to create a set of CSS: https://divtable.com/table-styler/ 

Done!

The table is ready to be shown:

HTML table out of SQL table

I hope this can be find useful for you.

3 Comments
Workflow Hero

Thank you Tomasz Poszytek for this excellent tip.

Workflow Hero

Nice! That surely will be useful.

Workflow Hero

You can go even further. Add DataTables script (https://DataTables.net) as custom includes, use proper classes and enjoy dynamic HTML tables, allowing sorting, searching and filtering  

About the Author
SharePoint and Office 365 expert with many years of experience, implementing business solutions following the low-code / no-code approach using Nintex, Microsoft Flow, PowerApps. A fan of automation of modern workplace processes and solutions.