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Printing data to a CSV file

Posted on 2013-12-16
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Last Modified: 2013-12-17
Hello,

We are using an old program called "Patterson - Eaglesoft" and have recently switched to a newer program that uses SQL and C#; but we need some of the old data.

Eaglesoft has proprietary databases and the only way to export data is to print it.  In short we need a list of "Referrals" that has slowly been entered in one by one over many years.  This list is roughly 75 pages and each row has 5 columns of data (Name, Address, Specialty, Phone, Email)

I have tried to print the list (as there is no export function), and was able to create a PDF and an XPS document but I need to import this data into a SQL database.

The Database will have several more columns however.

Is there anyway to print to a CSV file or a way to print to a PDF and then convert to a CSV?

Please let me know I am lost in this legacy software!
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Question by:PDGPA
6 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:Daniel Wilson
ID: 39722319
If your legacy software doesn't offer an export to CSV, then we'll guess at some workarounds.

Do you know what the underlying DB is for Eaglesoft?  If it's something relatively standard, we might find you a way to directly export from the DB to CSV.

Alternatively, you might take another look at the PDF that it prints.  Is it pretty clean w/o extra stuff?  If so, you might use PDFBox to extract the text.  If that extracts pretty well into columns, you could them import the text in Excel and output a clean CSV from there.
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Expert Comment

by:Bill Bach
ID: 39722703
If it is a Windows application, then try printing to a text-only printer.  You probably don't have one yet, but go into Windows to create a new printer, select LPT1:, then select "Generic" Manufacturer, and then "Generic/Text Only" printer.  This will print text cleanly with no extra codes, and may just yield acceptable results.

Otherwise, I agree with DanielWilson -- try to find out what database it uses.  If you cannot tell, post a sample file (if you can) and we can look at it here.
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Expert Comment

by:Kutyi
ID: 39722775
Have you tried to run an OCR software on the PDF to get the text out of the PDF?
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Accepted Solution

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Kutyi earned 2000 total points
ID: 39722871
Not sure, but is this the same software and could you follow Patterson's solution? https://pattersonsupport.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/11259/kw/export%20data
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Author Closing Comment

by:PDGPA
ID: 39725100
Thanks everyone for your help - Who knew the only way to export data was to run a report and then right click!  

Very excited to update this data and upgrade to our new system!

Thanks again!
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Expert Comment

by:Kutyi
ID: 39725478
Glad to hear it worked!
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