Announcing the Flow Preview Program
What is the Flow Preview Program?
Microsoft Flow updates every few days or weeks. The Flow Preview program is a way to get early access to those upcoming functionalities and updates, prior to, them being available in rest of the world (where your flows are normally deployed).
With this, you can:
- Try out, learn, and dogfood upcoming functionality. Much of our functionality will be rolled out first in preview, for a minimum of a few days, to get feedback. By participating in Preview program, you can learn about new capabilities sooner, and as well provide feedback on it. Also, you will be ready to quickly take advantage of new functionalities as soon as they reach regions where the remainder of their flows are created.
- Enable business continuity by ensuring their current flows will continue to work with the upcoming updates (vNext) of Microsoft Flow.
To access the preview functionalities across Microsoft Flow and PowerApps, you need to be in context of a preview environment (More details on the preview environment are given in the next section). In a preview environment you can:
- Create and edit flows
- Run your flows from the portal or from the Flow app for iOS or Android
- Administrating Flow: Admin experiences are available for preview using the preview version of Flow admin center
How to get early access to the upcoming updates?
For Microsoft Flow, all the flows and related resources (such as PowerApps and Custom Connectors) are stored in an environment. So, early access to all the preview functionality is available with an environment created in a region where the vNext (preview) bits are deployed. For now, there is only one region, which is called Preview (United States), as shown in the image below:
On selecting the region for the environment as Preview (United States) and accepting the consent for joining the Preview Program, you can create the environment to get access to the next version (vNext) of Microsoft Flow. All the flows and other resources created in this environment are on vNext version of platform.
You can learn about new functionality available for preview in the Microsoft Business Application Release notes.
Key scenarios with the preview program
1. Validate your production flows with the upcoming Flow updates (vNext)
You might like to verify your production flows, to work with the next upcoming updates on Flow. You can copy the flows from a production environment to an environment in Preview to test out the scenarios by using the Import/Export feature. Please note, all the other necessary resources like Custom Connectors, PowerApps, etc. will also need to be moved along with it. This should just create another copy of these flows and required resources, and you can start testing out the newer updates not just for running the flow, but also while editing and managing the flow.
2. Try out the new functionality available in preview
We will be launching many new functionalities initially in the Preview (United States) region. You can try out the new functionalities prior to it being available in rest of the regions (which might impact your production environment).
What are the known issues and limitations?
- Currently, you cannot create a database with Common Data Service for Apps in an environment in Preview (United States) region. This means features that dependent on the Common Data Service, such as Flow Approvals and Business process flows, will not be usable in a preview environment. We plan on adding this in the near future.
- The Flow mobile app only has one version at a time. The mobile app can connect to a preview environment, but there is no way to test out new versions of the mobile app at this time.