REDCap upgrade Dec. 19, expect downtime 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Published: December 6th, 2017

Category: News, redcap

On the evening of Tuesday, Dec.19, 2017 the CTS-IT will upgrade REDCap from version 7.6.9 to 8.0.3.

You can expect a downtime for REDCap from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. while we complete the upgrade.

The new version of REDCap scheduled for release on Dec. 19, 2017, has some new features and several improvements to existing features including:

New feature

External modules

External Modules are individual packages of software that are downloaded and installed by your REDCap administrator and then configured by project users. Modules can extend REDCap’s current functionality, and can also provide customizations and enhancements for REDCap’s existing behavior and appearance at the system level or project level.

External Modules that will be available to our users on 12/19 are:

Save Survey PDF to a Field – This module generates a PDF of a survey upon completion and automatically saves it to a REDCap File Upload field type. It is configured at the project-level with source instrument/target field pairs. In the event of save errors, the PDF is sent to a backup email address. This was developed for eConsenting using REDCap but is not required if you choose to upload all the signed ICF PDFs manually into subjects’ records.  It can be used for other purposes as well.  To enable this module, contact the REDCap Support Team ( A fee of 1-4 hours of work will be billed to the project, depending on the complexity of the project’s needs and user support needs.

Form Render Skip Logic – This module hides (or reveals) instruments based on the value of a single field on a single form – i.e. a branching logic for entire instruments. For example, if you have gender-specific forms in your project, selecting ‘Female’ for gender will only show the female-specific forms and hide the male-specific forms.  If the instrument is not relevant to the selected data field, it will not appear on the Record Status Dashboard, the Record Home Page, or the Data Collection Instruments menu within a specific record. To enable this module, contact the REDCap Support Team ( A fee of 1-4 hours of work will be billed to the project, depending on the complexity of the project’s needs and user support needs.


REDCap::evaluateLogic() method

For a repeating instrument or an instrument on a repeating event, in which the instrument is enabled as a survey, if the current instance of the repeating instrument/event has not yet been saved, then it will now disable the Survey Options drop-down list at the top of the data entry form until the form has first been saved. If a user tries to click the drop-down before that repeating form/event has first been saved, it will tell them to click the “Save & Stay” button before they can access the Survey Options. This will prevent ghost/placeholder instances from appearing in the Participant List, which occurred in previous versions.

Survey Queue setup dialog display

When a data export takes longer than three minutes, it provides an extra notice in the progress popup (i.e., “Exporting data…”) that informs the user that the export process may possibly take longer than 30 minutes and recommends that they not stop then restart the process, as it may cause it to take longer than usual.

“Current instance” no longer displays instance number in fraction

When viewing a repeating instrument’s data entry form for a record in a project, the “current instance” drop-down displayed near the top of the page no longer displays the instance number in a fraction format where it shows the total instances following by a slash (e.g., 2/5). It now only displays the instance number (and the custom label, if defined). This was changed because it led to confusion in cases where some instances were deleted, thus leaving gaps in the middle but still showing the max instance as the total instances, which is not the same thing and is confusing.

PDF exports to de-identify data

For PDF exports of data entry forms with data, if a field that is normally removed from exports due to users having export rights of “De-Identified” or “Remove all tagged Identifier fields” is being piped into a label, field note, etc. in the PDF file, that field value will no longer be piped in the PDF file but will instead be redacted (i.e., replaced with the text “[*DATA REMOVED*]”). This change is made to increase security/privacy regarding de-identification of data in data exports.

Piping with @DEFAULT tag

When piping field values into an @DEFAULT action tag when the piped value is blank/non-existent, it now no longer replaces the [variable] with “______” but instead replaces it with “” (i.e., nothing), which is viewed as more preferable since the value is being input as a field value. This is only true for piping specifically within the @DEFAULT tag and not for piping in general.

Adding North American phone number

The field validation for North American phone numbers is now more permissible and allows a greater variety of numbers to be used, such as 8XX and 900 numbers.

“Edit survey responses” checkbox

When clicking the “No Access” option for an instrument in Data Entry Rights when adding/editing a user’s privileges on the User Rights page, it now automatically deselects the “Edit survey responses” checkbox if the instrument has been enabled as a survey.


Emails less likely to be flagged as spam

Emails sent from REDCap now follow a more standardized format by including both HTML text and plain text in each email, thus making emails a bit more likely to be received by their recipients without them getting flagged as spam.

“Open Public Survey + Logout” button has been added

On the Public Survey Link page in a project, a new button “Open Public Survey + Logout” has been added to increase security in case users want to open the public survey while ensuring that the participant cannot access their REDCap account in the other browser tab.

“Now” variable added as date/time parameter

The datediff() function can now utilize the “now” variable as one of the two date/time parameters (in a similar way as the “today” variable). This is not only true for calc fields, but also for ASI logic, DQ rules, report filters, etc. You may use a time, date, datetime, or datetime_seconds field with the “now” parameter in datediff. Note: If using a date field with “now”, it will assume midnight (00:00) for the time component for the date field.

Numbers with comma as decimal mark will now work in calculated fields

Fields whose values have numbers with a comma as the decimal mark (e.g., “3,14” – European number format) now work in calculated fields. In previous versions, using a number with a comma would result in a blank returned value for the calc field. Note: The calculated value that is returned from a calculation will still have a dot/period as the decimal mark (if it contains a decimal), so in this way, it will convert into all calc field input values into dot/period format when performing the calculation, thus still returning numbers in dot/period format as all previous versions have.

Contact us