Ref Causing "This Entry Is Invalid" with no explanation

I have a dashboard with two views. A slice view where a single column is referenced in the sheet table with a ValidIf expression that references the unique values in a column of that sheet table. That column should be used to filter data in the second table view below. However, when anything is selected in the first view, it just shows yellow triangles and red writing below that says “This Entry Is Invalid”. (Which is impossible because its pulling unique values from the same table used in the second view.) And also that able below remains unfiltered. Please help.

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This means that the specific data inside that column does not match what is expected;

  • you’ve indicated that that column is a reference to a table, yet the value that you’ve selected is NOT a [key] value from your ref table.

Most likely the Valid If formula you’re using is simply pulling from the wrong column.

  • Check that the column inside your valid if is the same column that’s marked as the KEY for the child table.

Thanks for that! Couple things though,

  1. Why make it the key? As I understood the Key, the ref column in the child table does not have completely unique values.

  2. When I mark it as the Key, the field disappears in the view. Which creates another hole in my understanding lol

But Im excited to untangle this. Thanks for your help!

It is critical you fully understand the following:


Steve, thanks again for responding! However, I fear we may not be on the same page. I feel Im pretty aware of what a Key is at this point. I don’t think I can make this column the Key without causing other problems down the line because the entries are not unique. Maybe some greater context would be helpful:

  1. The Parent sheet data I am filtering is called EVENTS and the column is “Department”- so (Sales, Marketing, Support, IT, etc) and as you might imagine, multiple people can be part of the same dept (haha) so I can’t make this the Key as all the values are not unique.

  2. I will likely have dozens of users customizing their views at the same time. So I decided to add a “Department” column on my USERS sheet. So when people filter and view the data from the EVENTS sheet, the documentation code (the “1” that appears in the sheet as a result of the filter) only affects a user’s row on the Users sheet (instead of overwriting anything on the EVENTS sheet).

  3. Lastly, the “Department” column on the Users sheet wont have completely unique values either. So I cant make it the Key at the child level either.

Maybe this helps, maybe it doesnt. This is all putting my brain in overdrive tbh lol

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An extremely wise move; otherwise you’d have all sorts of cross-talk and… man things get weird for the users quick.

This post might be of help:

This would give you your user record in the slice, then you can easily pull that and use it in your Dashboard Slices.

INDEX(Current_User[User_View_Dept], 1) = [DeptID]