Guidance hint stops Briefcase pull

I have just gone a bit more grey with a form that I developed and just added guidance hints to make more user friendly.
I used the online XLSform converter with a column called guidance_hint (as per the specification). The xlsx sheet uploads and converts to xml, the xml works on Collect (V1.19.0) and the data sits on my mobile.

However, when trying to get hold of it via Briefcase the form definition silently dies and is not added to my pull list. I also tried to upload the xml to Aggregate and got an "is this an XForm definition?" so felt a bit stumped... putting that error into the Forum search led me to this post Repeat within a repeat problem! and wondered if the problem was JavaRosa / Briefcase

So I went retro, downloaded an old version of the offline XLSform converter (v1.7) and tried to convert my xlsx file. I got an error -

org.javarosa.xform.parse.XFormParseException: '${Start}:hint': text is not localizable for default locale [default]!

So I removed the guidance_hint column, converted it to xml (it worked no problem) and swapped this xml for the one in my Collect Directory (i.e. the place I wanted Briefcase to look)... Hey Ho, it works!!! I've got my data, but my head hurts (especially as I need that data tomorrow!!!) I'm also 4 hours behind where I wanted to be.

Bizarrely, I manually added guidance hints to a previous version of my form (edited the xml) when the Guidance Hints were introduced and it works fine (both for Aggregate and Briefcase). So there might be more of a problem here - is it to do with translations (localization?)

Anyway, if anyone has the same problem, this is a work around - the form with guidance hints works perfectly on the mobile but breaks if you try to upload the xml or use briefcase - hence why I didn't pick up the problem until I had a full day's worth of data!!!!

What version of Briefcase are you using?

Hi @yanokwa ,
I tried with Briefcase v1.13.1, as well as 1.13.0 and 1.11.3 (the other two versions that I had lurking on my computer). No joy with any of these.
Thanks for your help, as always.

Can you share the form?

I can send you a copy if there's a way to do that directly, but I'd rather not put it on the forum :slight_smile:

I've just looked at the 1.14 beta release note and see that issue #699 applies - I had one question that had a guidance hint but no hint (if you see what I mean). When I get a chance I'll add a hint in that question and see if it works then. But maybe that was the actual cause - more specific and maybe a lucky guess on my part that 'fixed' my problem.

Hi @seewhy and @yanokwa,

This is an issue already discussed and linked to the old JR in Briefcase.

The problem occurs when you have guidance hints but no hints for a specific question. Adding any hint (even a simple ".") will solve the problem.
Anyway this bug should be fixed in version 1.14 of Briefcase in which there is the update to the latest 2.13.0 JR.

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Thanks @aurdipas
I found the GITHUB #699 after posting my issue - if it's not on the forum I tend not to find it (As I've already discussed). I think that's because I tend to assume I've done something dumb, rather than think that there's a bug. Past performance is quite a good guide!

So hopefully having this issue on the forum will help someone else who has the very specific combination of bad luck, using guidance without hints, not updating their version of Briefcase quickly enough and not thinking to look at GITHUB has well as the forum :slight_smile:

It's one of the problems of the OpenDataKit 'ecosystem' - there are multiple tools that are evolving at different rates. But the other way round, it's one of the strengths of the OpenDataKit 'ecoystem' - there are multiple tools that are evolving at different rates.

And testing my form on Aggregate has demonstrated that I'm in the late Palaeolithic using v1.6 and now see that I can move away from AppEngine in the near future (if I can work out a whole new thing with Central or Aggregate on a new provider!). BTW same guidance hint problem on this version of Aggregate, which is fixed by adding a hint.

Thanks for the ongoing support.

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@seewhy The issue has been fixed in ODK Briefcase v1.14. Can you try it and let me know if you run into more problems?