Data entered, appears in data view but empty in excel export

Hello, I entered data on assets (14 categories in total). I just realised that for one category there is no data on the Excel file for the 742 surveys. When I check on the overview DATA, it appears that there are 329 entries that do not appear on the extract. I am assuming it is the one I am after since it’s the only one missing even though it is not named like I did (group_xf2we36_row_column instead of Zebuspigssheeps). Can someone please help me recovering this data? Thanks a lot
Link to the survey:
Entries missing are ISA1 - ZebusKobotoolbox issue - 1128.xlsx (291.5 KB)

Hi @agathetiana,

Welcome back to the community! Would you mind checking your download xls dataset once again. Generally, when you have a dataset that is seen in the server; you should be able to download them to your device.

Please let us know if you are still having issues!


Hello Agathe,
just an idea: Could it be possible, that you have a duplicate name for the variable (or in the choices list?) Or invalid characters in the name, like “,”.?
In your form item “15. Autre” shows up on a strange place (position 8).

Also, Excel might treat the comma as delimiter.
So, you might first look at the naming in the xls form (which you can easily export). But, if the comma creates a problem, you should have a similar problem for item ISA 14.

Kind regards

Hello, the data only appears in its summary form (Mean, median, mode, Std deviation). The excel column is empty and it is the only one to be empty (out of 15 of this category). How can I retrieve the entries? Thanks
329 out of 742 respondents answered this question. (413 were without data.) INTEGER

Hello, yes I know I never managed to fix this 15.Autre for some reason. But as you can see on the survey for 11. there is no added characters or punctuation but the code appears twice on the xls form only for 11 (zebus etc). Do you know what it means (highlighted in yellow)?aceX49mMXZrvi22Q8yujCR (1).xls (146.5 KB)

Dear Agathe,
I would suggest to have a look at your naming (variables and choices).
I think the problem comes from commas in the name
list_name / name / label:

matrix_pd8ro49 11._Zebus,porcs,moutons 11. Zebus,porcs,moutons

You have a mixture of manual and automatically generated names (& name styles):
In survey & choices sheet::

  • some names with invalid characters, like comma, blank
    which result in automatic name changes (see system column given_name)
    In choices sheet
  • names automatically generated (based on label), with or without later label change
  • names manually set
  • few strange names, like “row”,

The 15. Autre (label) issue comes because it’s on (wrong?) position 8 and has “row” as name.

You may have a similar problem at … where name = 4, but position is different.

I marked some issues in the attached file, hoping this helps.
wro aceX49mMXZrvi22Q8yujCR.xls (161.5 KB)
The name column specifies the unique variable name for that entry. … Names have to start with a letter or an underscore. Names can only contain letters, digits, hyphens, underscores, and periods . Names are case-sensitive.
Kind regards

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Thanks for the time you spent on this. But the survey is closed now, 742 were entered and only the entries for 11. zebus, moutons and cochons are missing. Are you suggesting that because of my naming issues the data can be found in another column on the excel spreadsheet? Where can I find it/How can I retrieve it? Thanks!

I think the data are in KoBo. You may look at in the data table.
I am not sure, but maybe you could fix the name in a new deployed form version and than export the data in Excel. Or you might try to edit manually the first/header line in the excel export.
In any case, I suggest to carefully check the Excel data sequence against the original KoBo data (e.g. with table or report), as the comma may mix up in Excel.
Kind regards

Joining the party a bit late, So I will try responding on the entire trail.
Looking at your XLS screenshot below, you seem to have named the integer question appropriately.

However based on the screenshot you shared it seems the name changed. Could you confirm which is the most recent version of the form that you have on the system. Ideally your form downloads will be based on the most recent structure of the form unless you choose to download data from all the previous versions of the form.

To answer some additional queries from the responses see below

No this is not the case the form would not have deployed.

I highly suspect that your current form structure does not have the question as is which is messing this up. Could you download all data collected from previous versions of the form.

Even though the order is visually disturbing, this has no bearing on the errors raised.

Did you ever change your form at some point? Check if you deleted the question and replaced it with something else.


Dear @stephanealoo,

I am sorry, this is not reality. The system will - without any error - internally correct the question name duplicates and invalid characters and allows duplicates in choices names. (The latter might even make sense in a rare context, if you want to code two GUI labels to the same code).
Here is an example with duplicates and , (invalid) in name and the XLS export after deployment, sowing the automatically corrected naming (questions only).
dup_names01.xlsx (63.6 KB)
ExportXLS_Deployed01.xlsx (10.2 KB)
Kind regards

On the choice list that you are right however not on the variable as you had hinted


Dear Stephane,
you may try the XLS example given, please. It can be imported with duplicate name for variables in the original Excel file and deployed, without any error.
The system internally corrects the duplicates from the original XLS survey sheet. (So, you are right that the system finally will make all variable names unique…)
Kind regards

1 Like