Using a Database (Table)
The group owner (or moderators with the proper permissions) will decide if your group has the Database function enabled in the group settings. If it is, you’ll see the choice on the left menu (Note: The Admin selection is only shown to administrators and moderators of a group):
Once you click on that, you’ll be taken to the Database page:
There will be a list of any existing tables. Click on the Create Table button just below the title bar and you’ll be ready to start making one. The top of the screen will look like this:
1. The first thing you’ll want to do is give the Table a name. This can be changed later by editing, if needed.
2. In the Description box, enter the information that you want shown with the Name on the main Database page.
3. (No longer shown. It will be Plain Text, Markdown, or HTML for the Description, depending on your posting preference setting.)
4. The choices for View Table are ‘Members’ or ‘Moderators and the Table Owner’. You’ll probably want the other Members to be able to see it in most cases.
5. For Edit Tables,the choices are also ‘Members’ or ‘Moderators and the Table Owner’. This determines who can make changes to the Table structure. In most cases, this will probably be limited to ‘Moderators and the Table Owner’.
6. Add Rows can be ‘Members’ or ‘Moderators and the Table Owner’. Depending on the use of the Table, you may want ‘Members’ to be able to add information.
7. Edit Rows may be set to ‘Members’ or ‘Moderators, the Table Owner, and the Row Owner’. Use caution with this setting. If set to ‘Members”, anyone can edit any row, even if they didn’t add it. That could become a nightmare if someone made some changes accidentally (or on purpose.)
This will bring you down to the area where you set up columns to enter information:
There will be 3 Columns initially to start your Database. You can add more later.
8. You can enter the Name that you’d like to use for the first column. The default is Column 1. It will change what is displayed in the gray bar just above it as you type.
9. Type is where you choose what type of information will be entered in this field. The choices are:
Single Line Text: This will present a single line for information to be entered on. The information may actually cover several lines on the page when viewed. There doesn’t seem to be a limit to the amount of text entered, but it will all be run together. For better formatting,choose Type:
Paragraph: This is similar to the first choice, but allows separating parts of the text by using the Enter key. It will allow blank lines.
HTML Paragraph: Allows you to use HTML formatting for the contents of the column.
Checkbox: Simply adds a Checkbox when entering information on a new row. It might be used for something like “Check here if you would like to be a member of the development team.”
Single Select Multiple Choice: This will give you more boxes to enter a list of choices to be used when adding a row. It defaults to 2 choices, but more can be added. Only one choice from the selections is allowed. This would be an obvious choice for Yes or No entries. You might also use it for simple multiple choice things like Front, Rear, Neither, or Both. Much more than that would probably be better handled by Type:
Multiple Select Multiple Choice: This is similar to the above, but allows you to choose more than one item from the list when adding a row. For consecutive items, you use the Shift key while clicking on the first and last items that you want to choose. If they’re not consecutive, you’d need to use the Control key when clicking on each one.
Date: This will default to today’s date when entering a new row. It’s a pop-up calendar, so can take a few seconds (or longer) if the date you want to enter isn’t close to today.
Time: This will have a drop down box in 30 minute increments when adding a new row.
Address: This will have spaces for Address Line 1, Address Line 2, City, State/Province/Region, Postal/Zip Code, and Country. Country is a drop down box. When entering a new row, you can speed up your selection (over scrolling) by typing the first letter of the country that you need. That will put you at the first choice that begins with that letter. (This Type is of limited use when sorting as it uses the characters of Address Line 1 to do the sort. If you need to make a Table more searchable,you may want to create separate fields for Address, City, etc.)
Link: For a link to an internet address.
Image: To insert a picture. (Owners/moderators can determine maximum image size in the group Settings under the Max Image Size In Databases choice.)
10. Display width is how wide the column will be in pixels. A value of 0 here will allow the columns to adjust to fill the width of the screen, wrapping as needed. More information on this can be found at https://groups.io/g/GroupManagersForum/message/13388.
11. You may choose a color for this Column. Default is No Color.
12. If you check this box, the Column information will be required when entering a new row. A new row cannot be added without it.
13. You can use the X in the upper right corner of any Column section if you want to delete it. You’ll notice that there are also up and down arrows on the Column title bar. You can use these to rearrange the Columns in the database. This will come in handy when you add more Columns and want to change the order that they’re displayed.
After you’ve finished the first 3 Columns, you have the option to add more:
14. Clicking on the Add Column button will open a new box where you can enter the parameters for it.
15. Once you’re ready to test, you click on the Create Table button and it will be added to the Database page.