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Databases lacking these three critical features.

Ryan Pfeffer February 23, 2024

Databases are not quite ready for primetime (thus beta), but it looks very promising! 

Based on what I saw after days of extensive testing, there are 3 critical gaps missing:

  1. Audit Logging. I see no way of tracking who added/deleted/modified records.
  2. Version Management. I cannot go back in time to a previous point if a mistake was made.
  3. Robust Aggregation and Charting (a la the stiltsoft "Tables in confluence" plugin)

I'd, of course, love it if I was wrong/missed these features. But I don't think I have.

1 and 2 are table stakes IMO, and we already effectively have everything that Databases offers via PageProperties reports and the aforementioned plugin (which is very cheap btw). Of course, the PageProperties approach is somewhat slow, but not that slow, and for the price we've gotten some amazing results without a ton of legwork.

What would be amazing would be allowing charts and plugins like "Tables in confluence" to be able to work off Database tables just like they do everywhere else. That would give us all the aggregation/charting power alongside a more robust data management tool.

Without these, the extra UX enhancements and other features on the roadmap don't really get it over the line for me, because at the end of the day, we need to be able to recover our data, and we need to analyze it. Apart from the 3 I mentioned above, the existing functionality is more than far enough along IMO to get  us switching everything over from page properties reports.



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Nadia Spira February 23, 2024

I'll second points 1 and 2 as absolutely critical. For context: I've been developing a proof of concept for my client to try to sell them on a switch to Confluence for technical documentation, and they are very interested after reviewing mock db / pages I've prototyped.

However an audit/history system for the databases would be a required feature -- I don't see a path where my client ultimately agrees to use databases without built in change history and version management. Is this planned once we are out of the beta period?

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Ryan Pfeffer February 23, 2024

I'll go further and say that I think this should be a pre-requisite for exiting beta. I can't see teams using this for mission critical stuff until that happens.

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Ryan Pfeffer February 23, 2024

One thing I wanted to throw out. We may be able to get a lot of the way there by having a detailed audit log, combined with a way to view and restore deleted rows. Having these two, gives us a way to recover data in many of the cases we'd be worried about (largely errant clicks, and human error). It won't be fool proof, but definitely workable. 

This combined with the reporting support I mentioned above could get us to be 💯 in on the Databases feature.

Sebastian Schiegl February 23, 2024

Not having an audit log is what's really keeping us from fully going into Databases and shifting away from SharePoint Lists.

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Liz Burns February 26, 2024

Agree with you on all counts - sadly the biggest problem I'm experiencing from the (still great) Page Properties component is that according to Atlassian, nesting it within the Table Filter, Charts & Spreadsheets for Confluence Cloud container isn't supported - and you can see that when a simple attempt to sort a date in a Page Properties Report table is made. 

I'm not getting the warm fuzzies about the fate of Page Properties - if it's eventually being replaced by Databases, then the latter should be able to handle not only your sensible suggestions, but also be able to work successfully wit - or accurately mimic - third-party application functionality. 

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