If I delete 300 fields in the xlsx, will the previously collected data still exist in ArcGIS Online?

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10-05-2021 09:17 AM
MollyBurton
New Contributor III

I'm working on cleaning up a survey that I created with roughly 700 lines in the xlsx file. I have found a way to remove approximately 300 lines from within the survey, however I want to know what happens to the previously collected data from those fields. Does the data disappear from ArcGIS online forever? Does it stay in ArcGIS online, but won't be added to anymore since the fields won't be available for input?

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jcarlson
MVP Notable Contributor

It will be the latter. If your survey no longer fills in the values on those removed fields, they will simply be null values in the layer. The fields, however, will still be there, along with any previously entered data, at least until you delete those fields yourself.

Survey123 Connect does sometimes prompt you to modify the existing schema if you're making changes to the "original" survey for the layer, so be aware of that. But again, it's entirely possible to have a survey that only references a handful of fields present in a layer.

Also, if any of those removed fields happen to be required, then you may run into issues submitting survey responses without values present.

- Josh Carlson
Kendall County GIS

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jcarlson
MVP Notable Contributor

It will be the latter. If your survey no longer fills in the values on those removed fields, they will simply be null values in the layer. The fields, however, will still be there, along with any previously entered data, at least until you delete those fields yourself.

Survey123 Connect does sometimes prompt you to modify the existing schema if you're making changes to the "original" survey for the layer, so be aware of that. But again, it's entirely possible to have a survey that only references a handful of fields present in a layer.

Also, if any of those removed fields happen to be required, then you may run into issues submitting survey responses without values present.

- Josh Carlson
Kendall County GIS
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