How to Create a Canvas App From Excel in Power Apps? [With Data from Scratch]

Are you starting Power Apps and want to know the easiest way to create a canvas app from Excel in PowerApps? Here is the step-by-step article for you; I have explained how to create a canvas app from Excel in Power Apps.

Microsoft allows us to create a canvas app in Power Apps from various data sources like Excel, SharePoint, SQL, etc. You can also check out “How to create a canvas app in PowerApps from a SharePoint list“.

Create a Canvas App from Excel in Power Apps

To create a canvas app from Excel in Power Apps, follow the five simple and easy steps below:

  1. Format your Excel file as a Table
  2. Upload your Excel file to a cloud location like OneDrive for Business or to a SharePoint document library
  3. Sign in to Power Apps
  4. Click on Create and Choose Excel
  5. Save and Publish the Power Apps app

I have created an Excel file as “Ask a Question” and added some records to it here. We will use the same Excel to create a Power Apps canvas app. You can download the Excel file and practice with me.

1. Format the Excel as Table

This is one of the important things when creating a Power Apps canvas app from Excel. You need to format the Excel file as Table. Otherwise, it will show you an error: “There are no tables in this file“.

create a canvas app from excel in powerapps

To do this:

  • Open the Excel file, Select all the records you want, then click on Format as Table from the Ribbon on the Home tab. Then select a Table option like the screenshot below:
create a canvas app from excel in powerapps
  • Then, in the next dialog box, select the “My table has headers” option, as I want the first row to be my header columns.
create a canvas app from excel in power apps
  • Finally, click on the Table Design tab from the ribbon and provide a Table name like below. If you do not provide a proper table name, it will come as Table 1 like this while creating the app in Power Apps.
create a canvas app from excel with data in powerapps

Finally, the Excel file should look like the above image.

2. Upload your Excel file to a cloud location

Now, upload the Excel file to a cloud location like OneDrive for Business or a SharePoint Online document library. I saved the file to my OneDrive for Business in the My files folder.

create a canvas app from excel with data in power apps
Note: Later if you want to share the App with other users in the organization to use it, then you need to provide permissions to this file along with sharing the Power Apps app.

Now, it is time to create the canvas app.

3. Sign in to Power Apps studio

Ensure you have the license assigned to you if you want to create an app in Power Apps. You can check out my video on the Power Apps licensing guide.

Open https://make.powerapps.com. If you have not signed in, it will ask you to log in with your credentials. Here, I have logged in with my Microsoft 365 developer tenant. If you are a developer and want to use Power Apps for development, you can also sign up for a Microsoft 365 developer account.

4. Create Power Apps Canvas App from Excel File

  • On the Power Apps home page, click the + Create button and choose Excel from the Start from section.
power apps create an app from excel
  • Then, it will show you all the existing connections you have. Here, since I need to connect to my OneDrive for Business, I need to create a connection to OneDrive for Business. For this
    • Click on + New connections and Choose OneDrive for Business like the below screenshot.
power apps create an app from excel file
  • Then the connection will be available, then click on the OneDrive for Business connection from the list of Connections. Then, it will show you all your Excel files from the My files folder. You can also choose any folder and choose your required file.
create a canvas app in powerapps
  • Then, it will show you all the tables in the particular Excel file. In this case, I have just one table; select the table and click on Connect.
create a canvas app in powerapps from excel
  • Once you click the Connect button, it will create an app in Power Apps for you. This is a fully working app where you can do all the operations.

You can see what the Power Apps canvas app looks like below:

how to create a canvas app from excel in powerapps

Here, you can see it creates 3 screens:

  1. BrowseScreen
  2. DetailScreen
  3. EditScreen

You can click on the Preview icon in the top right corner to preview the screen.

1. Browse Screen

In the Browse screen, you can see all the items from the Excel file using a Gallery control in Power Apps.

create a canvas app from excel in power apps

It also contains the below controls; you can see the details with functionality.

ControlsDescription
Reload iconRefresh the Power Apps canvas app.
Sort iconSort the items in ascending order or descending order.
Add iconAdd new item screen will open
Search boxSearch items using this search box.
Next arrowOpen the Details screen for the particular item.

2. Detail Screen

It will display details about a particular item. You can see below:

create a canvas app from excel in power apps
ControlDescription
Back arrowRedirect back to the browse screen.
Trash iconDelete the item
Edit iconNavigate to the Edit item screen.

3. Edit Screen

This is the Edit screen page, where you can edit a particular item. The same screen will also be used to insert a new item in the Power Apps canvas app.

create a canvas app from excel with data in powerapps
ControlDescription
Accept iconAccept the changes and Saved the item.
Cancel iconCancel the changes you have done in the screen.

This is how to create a canvas app in Power Apps from Excel. Now, it is the time to Save, Publish, and use the App.

4. Save and Publish the Canvas Power Apps app

Now, it is the time to Save and Publish the app to use it. In the top right corner, you can see the Save and Publish icon.

Save and Publish the canvas app

Click on the Publish icon and then Provide a name for the App. In the next dialog box, provide a name for the App and click on Save. If the app is not saved before, it will display the Save as dialog box.

Publish Power Apps canvas app

If the app is saved before, it will show the Publish dialog box like below. Here, you can change the app icon, and also provide a description for the app, then click on the Publish button.

Publish canvas app in Power apps

Once the canvas app published successfully, when you navigate to the Power Apps home page, you can see the App.

how to create a canvas app in powerapps

This is how to create a canvas app from an excel file in Power Apps. Next, you can share the Power Apps canvas app with other users.

I have also added a video tutorial on the same, check out the YouTube video.

Conclusion

I hope now you got a complete idea on how to create a canvas app from excel file in Power Apps.

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