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IMPORTING DATA IN EXCEL 2003 PROFESSIONAL IMPROPERLY DISPLAYS DATA IN GENERAL OR TEXT AS FORMULATED

Posted on 2011-02-17
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I have a text file that I am exporting from a Unix system to an ASCII text file and then opening the file or importing the text in an excel document and for some reason all my order numbers are coming up as dates. Some of them are accurate, but then it switches to date format. I have tried to export the data from Unix in CSV format and it does not matter how I do this, I still can not get the excel spreadsheet to display the cells accurately. I even tried to format the cells before I imported the data in the cell. I can't for the life of me figure out how to get this data to display accurately.
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Question by:SLGREZEL
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4 Comments
 
LVL 5

Expert Comment

by:skrga
ID: 34920352
Can you post that ASCII text file ?
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LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:bluepig
ID: 34920502
You may have to use the import wizard, and possibly create an import template to speed up the process next time. From the help file:

If the file is a text file (.txt), Excel starts the Import Text Wizard.
Follow the instructions in the Text Import Wizard. Click Help  for more information about using the Text Import Wizard or see Text Import Wizard. When you are done with the steps in the wizard, click Finish to complete the import operation.

If the file is a .csv file, Excel automatically opens the text file and displays the data in a new workbook.
 Note    When Excel opens a .csv file, it uses the current default data format settings to interpret how to import each column of data. If you want more flexibility in converting columns to different data formats, you can use the Import Text Wizard. For example, the format of a data column in the .csv file may be MDY, but Excel's default data format is YMD, or you want to convert a column of numbers that contains leading zeros to text so you can preserve the leading zeros. To run the Import Text Wizard, you can change the file name extension from .csv to .txt before you open it, or you can Import a text file by connecting to it.
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LVL 19

Accepted Solution

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Richard Daneke earned 2000 total points
ID: 34922295
As you import/convert a text file to Excel, the questions for each column(cell) are presented on one (JUST ONE) of the pages of this wizard.
You can select the column with your mouse, above the work area are radio control buttons to declare this data as General, Text, Number, Date (and format), and even a Do Not Import.
Please take a minute to select the correct value here.
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Author Closing Comment

by:SLGREZEL
ID: 34926815
Thank you I was able to change the column that was having issues to text and that worked. For some reason when the columns originally come thru they come thru in general format which causes the issue. All set
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