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Importing Text Files

You can import data from a text file into Microsoft Access even though, unlike the data in a spreadsheet, the data in a text file isn’t arranged in columns and rows in an orderly way. You make the data in a text file understandable to Access either by creating a delimited text file, in which special characters delimit the fields in each record, or by creating a fixed-width text file, in which each field occupies the same location in each record.

Preparing a Text File

You might be able to import some text files into Access without changing them, particularly if a text file was created by a program using standard field delimiters. However, in many cases, you’ll have to modify the contents of the file, define the file for Access with an import specification, or do both before you can import it. See the sidebar later in this chapter for details about creating an import specification.


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