CSV format

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CSV format

Easy Data Transform can input from and output to CSV format files. Default file extension ".csv".


CSV (Comma Separated Value) format is commonly used for exchanging tabular data between programs.


CSV is a type of delimited text file format. The column delimiter is usually a comma, but not always. Carriage return denotes the end of a row.


Easy Data Transform supports the following column delimiters:

Comma (,)

Semi-colon (;)

Colon (:)

Pipe (|)

Caret (^)

Tab (\t) (used for TSV format)


For space delimited files see Fixed width format.


To output to a CSV file you should typically set Delimiter to Comma (,) and Quoting to As needed in the Right pane.


For example:


convert to csv


Is output with Delimiter set to Comma (,) and Quoting set to As needed as:


CategoryID,CategoryName,Description,In stock

1,Beverages,"Soft drinks, coffees & teas",true

2,Condiments,Sweet and savory sauces,false

3,Confections,Candies and sweet breads,true 


Note that " quotes have been used to enclose values that contain delimiter characters.


Set Quoting to Always if you want to quote every value. Set Quoting to Never if you don't want to quote values (delimiters and carriage returns within values will be changed to spaces).


If you want to input a file with a different delimiter to those listed, then:

1.Input it with a delimiter unlikely to be in the text, e.g. caret (^), to input it as a single column

2.Use the Split Col transform to transform it into multiple columns using the appropriate delimiter.


Many CSV file are not well formed. For example, they have unescaped quotes. As the CSV format is not well-defined, badly formed CSV files can be interpreted in more than one way. Easy Data Transform will do the best it can in these circumstances.


See also TSV format.