SOLVED

Possible problems with periodic sync aproach?

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Occasional Contributor

We would like to sync CSV-files periodically. Before the start of each period we would only list courses (sections) starting that period + teachers & students attending these courses on the CSV-files. Will the students and teachers from the classes (sections) of previous periods stay unchanged so that students are not removes from previous courses (sections) etc.?

14 Replies

Hi Jarkko,

If I understand your question correctly, you want to make sure the groups that SDS creates from the CSV file from your student information system will not go away when you do a new sync.

One of the designs of School Data Sync is to make sure it does not over-write or delete anything.   While a group may change (for example, if a student leaves a school or gets added mid-term), SDS will not delete the group.  However, if you remove any or all users from a group in your SIS, then that change will be reflected the next time SDS Sync runs.  

So the answer to your question depends on the data that is in the new CSV file you sync. 

for example:

If you create a section in September called "Science 101", the members of that section (teachers and students) will be added to the group in Office 365 called "Science 101".  (The actual group will have a unique SIS ID).  If a student gets added in October, the group will be automatically updated with the new student next time SDS sync runs.  If a student leaves the class, they will be removed.  

Now it is January, the start of a new term.  There is a new group of students in Science 101.  The most common scenario is your SIS ID for that section is unique, and a new group will be created for science 101.  The old group will remain until you, as the tenant global administrator, take action to remove it.  

If you re-use the exact same SIS ID for Science 101 in January that you used in September, then I expect all the old group members would be removed.  This is something I would need to test/verify since the more common scenario is the SIS uses a different SIS ID.  

The disadvantage to SDS not removing groups is that in some cases you may want them to be gone.  

If you want to remove users or sections, here is some more information on that:

I hope this helps, 

Matt McGinnis

Best Response confirmed by Deleted
Solution

Thanks for the quick answer. I know that the sections stay intact but what about the students if in the new CSV-files there is no mention of the section listed in previous CSV-files. Here is the scenario:

 

Sync 1 with CSV files batch 1: Section A (SIS ID 11111) with students

 

Sync 2 with CSV files batch 2 (same sync profile as Sync 1): Section B (SIS ID 2222) with students . In the batch 2 there is no mention of Section A in the section CSV file nor the student enrollment or teacher roster CSV files!

 

What will happen to Section A after Sync 2 is run?

  1. Section A will be gone and students too (I beleive this will not be the case)
  2. Section A will be there but with no students
  3. Section A will be there with the students

So, I want to find out how does the comparison actually work between different CSV-files :)

 

My sincere apologies for the inexcusably late response.  For some reason I'm no longer getting the notifications for responses on the forum- I need to fix that.

In your scenario, you have control over what happens.

your "option 1" will not happen- SDS will not remove the group if the group no longer exists in the CSV file.

If your "section" CSV file for 11111 is updated in the new CSV and the teachers and students are removed, they will be removed from the group.

If you "section" CSV file makes no reference to section 11111 at all, then it will be retained with all members still there.

 

We are working on additional end of term functionality and will have more information and details in the coming months.  Stay tuned!

 

thanks,

 

Matt McGinnis

 

Hi!

 

"If you "section" CSV file makes no reference to section 11111 at all, then it will be retained with all members still there."

 

I have to disagree about that one. If there is no reference to section 11111 at all, then students are removed. I have tested this.

 

So I would say, that the correct answer is: "2. Section A will be there but with no students"

 

If that is not way you wan't it, you have to change your query so that also archived (Primus?) sections are still in the csv file.

 

br Tapio Aalto

Tapio- thanks so much for your community involvement.

Jarrko-

Tapio is correct.  Even though you were clear, I missed the point you made about using the same sync profile and had assumed incorrectly that you were creating a new sync profile.  I re-read and saw that you specifically said  "using the same sync profile"  so I need to amend my answer.

In the case of using the same sync profile, the users would be replaced/removed from the group.

However, if you create a new sync profile and make no reference to the old section ID, then the group would remain untouched.

 

I hope this clarifies.  If not, I'll watch the forum closely for any follow-up questions.

 

Thanks,

 

Matt

 

 

Thanks for the info. I was afraid this was the case. This is not so good news. It increases the risk of accidently deleting members (students) from existing teams from previous periods. All it takes is one mistake when transferring student data from SIS… So, this means we must include all the members (students) of all the teams of previous sections with every new SDS file transfer. I wonder what this end of term functionality that Matt mentioned will do? Hopefully pause sync of the sections of previous school year :)

We will try to be smart about the end-of-term functionality that is coming, and I will make sure the engineers see your feedback.  Thanks!

Hello.

Despite of all answers, here are my 2 cents.

 

When you archive a section (it is not included anymore in the SDS data), the O365 Group and the attached Team in the cloud will remain at the state, where they are left at that point. You do not have to include those groups in further sync data. 

 

SDS will not delete Groups/Teams.

 

This is not only tested, but running in production (several tenants/ > 100k Students) and actually, overall concept is based on the fact that "archived" sections will stay in the cloud until deleted by some other measures than SDS.

 

Best Regards

Marko

 

We have also done archiving at the end of the term. And it works just like you describe it. But we are looking for a "mid-term" solution to secure courses of previous periods. I guess we use a different sync profile for each period or build a database of some sort inbetween SIS and SDS as a "safety measure".

Hi!

 

"When you archive a section (it is not included anymore in the SDS data)"

 

That depends how you define your query.

 

"Group and the attached Team in the cloud will remain at the state, where they are left at that point."


Thats interesting. If I understand you correctly, you mean that also members will remain in those groups?

 

"SDS will not delete Groups/Teams."

 

No it don't.

 

br Tapio

Hi.

I don't understand your first point, of course depends on query, but as stated, if course/class data is not included anymore, the state will be left were it was when last synced.

 

"Group and the attached Team in the cloud will remain at the state, where they are left at that point."


Thats interesting. If I understand you correctly, you mean that also members will remain in those groups?

 

Yes.

 

MF

hi.

Pls define "secure courses". Do you mean from teacher accidental deletion? Probably not possible, as teacher being owner of O365 group, thus capable of deletion. As stated in my other posts, data will remain, if not synced anymore, until deleted in cloud, SDS is not helping you there. And members will stay in group until group or member removed from group or cloud entirely.

 

But I'm interested in your additional sync profile idea, as I still struggle to understand, what cause there would be for me to use more than one, please elaborate, if possible?

 

MF

Hi!

 

I mean, that students and teacher are removed from group/Teams.

 

Group/Team are not deleted and data is left intact, you propably mean that.

 

The origal questions was "Will the students and teachers from the classes (sections) of previous periods stay unchanged so that students are not removes from previous courses (sections) etc.?"

When i wrote "secure courses", I meant "secure" them from SDS removing the students from the courses of previous periods. When using only one sync profile you need to make sure that also the students from previous, not-retired sections are listed in CSV-files, otherwise the students will be removed.


@Marko Franken wrote:

hi.

Pls define "secure courses". Do you mean from teacher accidental deletion? Probably not possible, as teacher being owner of O365 group, thus capable of deletion. As stated in my other posts, data will remain, if not synced anymore, until deleted in cloud, SDS is not helping you there. And members will stay in group until group or member removed from group or cloud entirely.

 

But I'm interested in your additional sync profile idea, as I still struggle to understand, what cause there would be for me to use more than one, please elaborate, if possible?

 

MF