Creating References Between Tables


A reference can be added to a table in two ways.

  • AppSheet automatically adds references when you generate or regenerate a table.
  • You can manually add references.


System Added References

When you initially create your app or when you regenerate a table's column structure, AppSheet will try to automatically infer references between tables. For example, if you have a Customers table with a Name column as its key, and if the Orders table has a column called "Customer Name", the "Customer Name" field is assumed to be a Ref column.


User Added References

You can add a reference as follows:

  1. Ensure your worksheet has a column to contain the reference.
  2. If you needed to add a new worksheet column to contain the reference, go to the Data > Column Structure pane and click the Regenerate button for the table. This will include the newly added worksheet column in the table.
  3. Go to the Data > Column Structure pane, show the table schema, and select the column you wish to make a reference.
  4. In the "Column Type" dropdown select "Ref".'
  5. In the "ReferencedTableName" dropdown select the referenced table.
  6. Click "OK"
  7. Save the changes.


System Added Reverse Reference

Whenever a Ref column is created, AppSheet automatically creates a "reverse reference" virtual column in the referenced table. This is true whether you add the reference or the system does.

The "reverse reference" virtual column is given a default name which you can change.

The "reverse reference" virtual column is assigned an app formula which uses the special function REF_ROWS(). REF_ROWS() is the name of a complex SELECT() function.



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