XML Values in Table are displayed

Hello Kal_am …

I already tried and it keeps showing the same …

Furthermore, this form is filled out by other users and they also view it in the same way in the table.

It seems like you are using the HHI server. Could you share with us your username and project name (through a private message) so that we could have a closer look at it.

I am using this: "Researchers, Aid Workers
& Everyone Else "

Of course I can send it to you …

How do I send you the private message, to an email?

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You could send private message as outlined in the previous post:

Kal please validate if you received the private message?

Thank you

Could you provide the 2 used choices lists here? (Excel choices sheet extract, incl. column headers)

Did you change these choices in form versions?

Wross good afternoon

I don’t understand what you mean by “Excerpt from Excel options sheet, including column headings”

Explain to me please.

If you download your (empty) form as xls you get an excel file/workbook with the choices lists as second sheet.
You can reduce this to the 2 lists from your screenshot example (assets, …) and post the sheet here to provide more help.

Thank you for sharing the details @braulioangulo! Am on it. Will reach you soon!

@braulioangulo, while going through your survey project i observed that you had redeployed your survey project 37 different times. I made some quick scanning of the redeployments and observed the following:

Followed this question that had display issues (and expecting the same has happened with the other issues as well):

Your question in the survey xlsform:

Image 0

Note: This question was only added to the survey project from the second re-deployment.

Choices for the question outlined above: (redeployment V7)

Image 1 (V7)

Choices for the question outlined above: (redeployment V10)

Image 2 (V10)

Choices for the question outlined above: (redeployment V11)

Image 3 (V11)

Choices for the question outlined above: (redeployment V13)

Choices for the question outlined above: (redeployment V14)

Choices for the question outlined above: (redeployment V18)

Image 6 (V18)

Choices for the question outlined above: (redeployment V32)

Choices for the question outlined above: (redeployment V37)

Image 8 (V37)


While downloading the data, i observed that the data could be downloaded without any issue (i.e. there was no issue as seen in DATA>Table). However, when comparing the xlsform, the choices set till V32 seems OK (for this particular question). But once it was redeployed to 37 i could observe a totally different name used when compared between V32 and V37.

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Might the Á letter (non basic ascii) create a problem? But when I tested it with a simple form, all went ok.

@Kal_Lam, could you explain, please.
How, in general, choices names and corresponding labels are stored with different form versions? e.g.
-What happens if a former choice item was deleted?
-What happens if a different former choice item has got a new label?

What is the result for table view?
Same for report?
What for Excel export (last versus all versions)?

Also, are there any constraints for letters in choices names?

Thanks in advance and kind regards.

Kal_am good afternoon.

I did that change that you see in the Name column for V37 because the problem was already present in DATA> table. I was hoping I could fix it by doing that update, but there was still no change.

I just made a modification that can be seen on the V40 but still I don’t see any changes

My question remains the same: Why are the XML values displayed and not the tags that I have configured?

Hi @braulioangulo,

I once again confirm that you are seeing this issue as you accidentally did this (which i could reproduce at my end):

  • Created a survey project with choices name as number i.e. 1, 2, 3 etc.
  • Deployed your survey project.
  • Collection of data and submitting them to the KoBoToolbox server.
  • Amended the choices name as AUTOMATIC.
  • Deployed your survey project.
  • Then again, collected data and submitted them to the KoBoToolbox server.

Doing so i too had the same issue you are reporting:

Note: The good part is that your data still holds the label correct. FYI, please see the data that i see when i download them:

Image 2

This applies for your case too!

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Hi @wroos,

For your queries, i have created a dummy project and with a question Fruits? and it’s choices as Fruit 1 coded as 1, Fruit 2 coded as 2, Fruit 3 coded as 3 and Fruit 4 coded as 4. Made a dummy entry and entered a total of 4 submissions (with Fruit 1, Fruit 2, Fruit 3 and Fruit 4).

Regarding your query 1:

So, to answer this query i simply deleted Fruit 4 that was coded as 4.

The result in the table view is as follows:

The result in the custom report:

The result with data export:


Regarding your query 2:

So, to answer this query i simply renamed the label of Fruit 3 that was coded as 3 to Fruit 3 (Changed).

The result in the table view is as follows:

The result in the custom report:

The result with data export:


An issue here.

Regarding your query 3:

Could you kindly explain this further as i could not get it correctly.

Thank you once again for bringing this to our attention. It seems that there is an issue here.



Data that had the deleted choice item as selected in them will appear as the values they had without a label to the value.

The most recent label i.e. new one would be the one applied for all data that has the value corresponding to the label.

These being a representation of the data, which are dependent on values and labels, the most recent mapping based on the last deployed form will take precedence as evidenced by what @Kal_Lam had just shown. Omitted (deleted) labels will not appear except for their values, Changed labels will take the form of the new labels.

Summary: Changing labels and values within select questions should be done carefully since the potential of value and label mix-ups are quite high.

On the last point

If by constraints, you meant restrictions on what letters can or cannot be used on the choice names. Beyond the instructions of the general XLS forms, we have not tested what restrictions should or should not be used. However, from the screenshot below, when one has a space on a select_one and they convert it to select_mutiple, there is bound to be an issue.



I consider this a very good learning lesson and an excellent improvement opportunity for displaying information in Data-tables.

Thank you all for the provision and clarifications.


Hello KoBo experts,
Thank you very much for this deeper digging! Maybe could enhance the KoBo documentation too?

This can also explain the mixture of names and labels brauliongulo experienced.
Kind regards

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Dear @Kal_Lam,
After looking again at your screenshots, there seem to be some inconsistencies:

  • Ad Query 1: Label(?) is different between Table (4) and Report (Fruit 4), same as Export (Fruit 4)?
  • Ad Query 2: Same as for Query 1. And additionally: Label(?) is different between Table/Report ( Fruit 3 (changed) ) and Export (Fruit 3).

So, Report, Table and Export show different data!
Do we see different things here: labels <> names?
I would aspect, that the label is the same in all three views: table, report, export (“being a representation of the data”, as stephane said). Same for name.
Kind regards

More time for systematic pre-testing and avoiding form changes during field work, might be the overall recommendation.

@wroos, I have created a GitHub issue. You could follow the same here:

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Hello @Kal_Lam,
What about the other inconsistency, please, see above Ad query 1? Report <> Table.
Kind regards

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