Allow_choice_duplicates Error Message - Cascade

Hi All,

I keep getting the below error when I try to view cascade for MENA countries, governorates, and cities. I made sure that there are no duplicate names and wrote the names in computer friendly formate, but not sure what the issue is. When I tried to use only some of the data I was able to view the data, the countries and governorates appeared but cities didn’t appear in the questionnaire after clicking on a governorate

“There does not seem to be a allow_choice_duplicates column header defined in your settings sheet. You must have set allow_choice_duplicates setting in your settings sheet to have duplicate choice list names in your choices sheet”.

I would highly appreciate your help with that!


Hi @hadil,

Welcome to the community! We have some sample workarounds that could help you solve your issue. Would you mind having a look and see if it helps you:

This workaround (is a bit complex) and should also be helpful:

Have a great day!

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Problem was discussed before.

Sometimes search feature of forum can help :expressionless:

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Actually, I think I figured what the issue is. I had long names that were cut by kobo. Then they becuase duplicates. Ex: Abectew_yenyesyn_1 Abectew_yenyesyn_2 would be cut to, Abectew_y. Now I don’t have duplicate names. But, I have another issue, with Administrative 3 (cities), the cities don’t show starting from the third country. I dowloaded the XLSForm and it turned out that the cities are only written for 2 countries. I added the additional cities and uploaded it as a new form but still had the same issue. What do you think the issue is? Is the amount of data larger that what KoBo can process? Please note that the cascading include all MENA region (attaching here the form for your information. taNnXnysahZidyodzwVCSYe.xlsx (116.2 KB) he edited XLS

Thanks alot!

Hi @hadil
Looking at your form, I notice the following

  • For countries on the choices sheet, I see all the countries have some Governorates within them as summarized below which sum up to 388 governorates.


  • On looking at the Governorates, each one seems to have a city with a total of 3129 cities listed across the Governorates.

  • On assessing your issue

I noticed your choices sheets seem to have only countries within them. So as it is, this seems to be a problem with your form. Please note that the system can hold quite a huge chunk of data.

Proposed Solution

  1. One of the easiest approaches to me would be that you structure your form differently i.e. fooling the form
  • Create Country as you have created
    -Create Governorate but not as a cascading question, but rather as 15 Governorate questions e.g. Governorate_Algeria, etc. This will minimize the selection list per Governorate.
    -Create cities as a cascading select from the country-specific Governorate list e.g. cities_algeria would cascade based on the governorate_algeria list.
  • If you are interested in analyzing the results governorate and city as one, you can create a text question for each which uses a calculation approach that will be the Governorate and the City to provide you this in one. e.g. for governorate you can use; **f(${Country}=“Algeria”,concat(${governorate_algeria},""),(if(${Country}=“XXX”,concat(${governorate_XXX},""),EXPAND FOR ALL COUNTRIES)
  1. The alternative approach would be to use select one from external as illustrated in the topic/s below