I have a bunch of desktop applications that do bulk uploads (they allow users to upload data from a spreadsheet into a database). The bulk upload programs do data validation, as incorrect data being uploaded would be costly to the business.

If there are any errors in the user's file, the program reports the errors and makes the user fix the errors before being able to proceed with the upload.

Question 1: Should the bulk upload program stop the user from proceeding until the errors are fixed, or should it automatically proceed with the upload but only with the valid rows?

Question 2: The users have asked for a new feature -- warnings. So these are things that shouldn't stop a user from proceeding but things that the user should be aware of before proceeding. Should I force the user to acknowledge the warnings before proceeding, or should I just show the warnings and allow the user to proceed without any friction?

Question 3: Should I display warnings and errors in the same grid, or should the warnings and errors be displayed in different grids?

1 Answer 1


Ans to Q1: It actually depends on business case to choose between all-or-none OR partial entry. If data is not interdependent, we can choose to save whatever is correct and as user to correct remaining.

Ans to Q2: As you are saying "...user should be aware of before proceeding..." it makes sense to have use acknowledge it first before proceeding. Just to avoid an scenario where user will never care to see warnings if data is uploaded

Ans to Q3: Depends on where user can take action. If user can ack warnings on UI, it makes sense to show it in same grid with filter for user to get warnings out of all rows. If keeping errors does not make sense for later viewing, its better to provide link to download xls with only errored records per uploaded file with "Reason" as additional columns against all such rows. This way user can correct and upload the file.

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