Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Importing, Exporting, and Connecting to Data Sources
Excel makes its best guesses about the proper way to import your data. It’s not infallible,
however, so at each step of the process you can override its decisions. For example, if you’re
importing data that contains no delimiters but is arranged in a fixed grid where each field
occupies the same number of spaces, you can choose Fixed Width and try your luck.
The second step of the Text Import Wizard, shown here, allows you to specify a delimiter
character. Tab is selected by default. In this example, we had to select Comma before the
breaks between fields were recognized.
The Data Preview pane at the bottom of the dialog box shows the data as it will appear in
your worksheet. It’s worth scrolling through the preview to quickly verify that your data
will be imported correctly. If you see a potential problem, you can go back and correct the
import file in a text editor and try again.
The final step of the wizard allows you to assign cell formats to individual columns and to
skip columns you don’t want to import. Click to select a column from the list in the
preview pane (hold down the Ctrl key and click to select multiple columns), and then choose
a format for the selected columns. Click Do Not Import Column (Skip), if you want Excel to
ignore the contents of the selected columns.
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