Not correct character encoding when importing csv-file into Windows Vista Contacts

Posted on 2009-04-07
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-06-27
I have saved an Excel-file containing contact information into a csv-file. But when I try to import the file using Import in Windows Contacts, the Swedish characters å, ä, ö, are not imported in the correct way. Instead I get a "box" in the place where å, ä or ö should have been. This is strange as my default system language is set to Swedish. I am running a Swedish Vista, Swedish Micrososft Office 2007... Is there a workaround for this problem?
Question by:DWOLTERS
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Expert Comment

ID: 24100750
did you update the language packs?? do that and tell me if it works. you will need the update for both vista and office

Author Comment

ID: 24121530
As I have Windows Update running all the time, including Office updates, and I do have Language Pack for Microsoft .Net Framework 3.5, SP 1 Swedish installed, I am not sure what else I can update? It seems that the contacts wants textfiles in Unicode (UTF-8) when importing contacts, BUT the default option from within MS Word and Excel is Westerneuropean (Windows) when exporting csv-files, it gets kind of clumsy!!!
LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 24121680
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Author Comment

ID: 24121728
Thanks Stellan! Unfortunately my knowledge of VBA is not quiet at that level yet! My solution to this problem (so far) is to export the data from within Excel 2007 to a csv-file. Import the csv-file into Word 2007. Export the file again as a text-file BUT using the encoding that Windows contacts require (UTF-8)!! And then finally,  import the file into Windows Contacts! So if someone has a quicker way to do this, e.g. changing some hidden option in MS Excel 2007 Swedish version, I would be most grateful, even if this solution I found out myself only takes a minute or so longer to do!
LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 24121752
Can you provide a sample excel file that should be saved with UTF-8 encoding?


Author Comment

ID: 24121816
Sure! Here it is! And the same file after having been imported into Word and then exported using the option UTF-8 text encoding!
LVL 13

Accepted Solution

StellanRosengren earned 1500 total points
ID: 24122830
Ok, I used the method from the link above in a macro that I would like you to test.
If you do not know how to implement the code you can download a workbook and save it in a folder that I suggest you set as a trusted location. To do that, you can go to Excel options via the Office button (top left) and then select Trust Center->Trust Center Settings->Trusted Locations.

I have assumed that you have 17 columns to save, and that your contact info starts in column A.

If the file is opened from a trusted location the macros are allowed to be executed.

Here is the link to the sample macro file:

In the sample workbook there is a UserForm where you select which worksheet to convert. In the code snippet below the worksheet to convert must be the active sheet.

Kind regards,

PS. I am living in Gothenburg. And you?

Sub ConvertAndSaveAsCSV()
    Dim wksC As Worksheet
    Dim oStream As Object
    Dim i As Integer
    Const iNUMCOLS As Integer = 17
    Dim sOut As String
    Dim lRow As Long
    Dim sName As String
    Dim iPos As Integer
    set wksC = ActiveSheet
    iPos = InStrRev(wksC.Parent.FullName, ".")
    sName = Left(wksC.Parent.FullName, iPos - 1) & Format(Now, "yymmdd-hhmmss")
    lRow = 1
    Do Until lRow > wksC.UsedRange.Rows.Count + wksC.UsedRange.Cells(1).Row - 1
        'First cell in row
        sOut = sOut & wksC.Cells(lRow, 1).Value
        'The rest of the row
        For i = 2 To iNUMCOLS
            sOut = sOut & ";" & wksC.Cells(lRow, i).Value
        Next i
        'linefeed at the end of the row
        sOut = sOut & vbCrLf
        'Increment row number
        lRow = lRow + 1
    'Remove last linefeed
    sOut = Left(sOut, Len(sOut) - 2)
    Set oStream = CreateObject("ADODB.Stream")
    oStream.Type = 2
    oStream.Charset = "utf-8"
    oStream.writetext sOut
    oStream.savetofile sName & ".csv", 2
    Set oStream = Nothing
End Sub

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LVL 13

Assisted Solution

StellanRosengren earned 1500 total points
ID: 24122848

Author Closing Comment

ID: 31567881
Well as I do not know enough VBA, it is impossible for me to evaluate the solution!
LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 24123285
I suppose that the macro worked to convert the xlsx file. Thanks for the points. But I
would like to know why it is only worth a grade B. What is missing in the solution?

From EE-help:
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Grading at Experts Exchange is not like school. It's more like the "10-point Must" system in professional boxing; in other words, an answer is worth an A, unless it doesn't resolve your issue. If it requires you to do a little more research, or figure out one more piece of code, then it's worth a B. If you think it's not worth a B, the custom is to offer the Experts an opportunity to earn a better grade.

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Kind regards,

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