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Power Apps Code Review Tool

Back in January, we announced Source code files for Canvas apps. https://powerapps.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/source-code-files-for-canvas-apps. Generating source code files from a canvas app is today possible thanks to the Power Apps Language Tooling library which is an open source-code library available here: https://github.com/microsoft/PowerApps-Language-Tooling.  The power of this library goes beyond source code packing and unpacking. As an example, I am happy to share the Power Apps Code Review tool which uses the Power Apps Language Library to process a canvas app and extract insightful information used during an app review.

Power Apps Code Review Tool

With the Power Apps review tool, you can conduct app reviews more efficiently thanks to a customizable checklist of best practices, a 360 view of your app through app checker results, app settings and a free search code/formula viewer.

The Checklist

The checklist represents a series of patterns to check in your application. You can pass or fail each pattern, add comment for the app maker to consider or view additional details related to the pattern.  When you start a review, you will notice that certain items are already in pass or fail state. This is because we can automatically detect certain patterns we process an app when you first create a review.

App Checker Results

The app checker screen shows the results from the  app checker result run for the app when it was last published. These results are available in the Power Apps studio as your build your app but they are included in this tool for convenience. A quick glance at the app checker result will often show serious issues with the app such as inefficient loading or delegation issues.

App Analysis

The app analysis section allows us to quickly check if certain important app setting flags are on. The flags have an impact on performance. The screen info section gives us a quick count of the number of controls used for each screen to ensure that it is below the recommended max of 300 control per screen. The media files sections list all medias embedded with the app as well as their size. Finally, the network trace section helps identify slow network requests within the app.

Code Viewer

The code viewer section lists all screens, controls and properties with a search and filter function allowing you to quickly find formulas within your app. You can search by control name, property or simply by any text that can be present in power apps formula.

You can link formulas to a particular pattern by selecting the “+” button.  This is useful when providing feedback to the app developer as they can where exactly in code certain best practices were not followed.

Expanding the data source icon will present a list of all data sources and collection used in the app. Selecting a source in the list will show all of the reference across all the control’s properties in all screens.


Creating a Review

When launching the Power Apps Review app, you will be presented with  a list of existing reviews and the option of creating a new review

Simply add the app name, msapp file and other optional fields. Including a Power Apps Monitor trace event files will give addition insight into slow queries within the app under review.

Deploying the Code Review tool

Download the solution file here: https://github.com/microsoft/powerapps-tools/tree/master/Tools/Apps/Microsoft.PowerApps.CodeReview
Import the solution and follow the steps to configure Connection References.

Overview Video 

Check out a full code review using the code review tool