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Chapter 9. Entering Information > Bringing In Data from Outside Excel

Bringing In Data from Outside Excel

Typing in data isn't the only way to fill cells in Excel: You can connect to an external database and import data from it (the database administrator can help with that), and you can import data from a text file.

To import data from a text file:

1.
Choose Data > Get External Data > Import Text File (Figure 9.23).

Figure 9.23. Choose Data > Get External Data > ImportText File.


2.
Navigate to the file you want to import, select it, and click Get Data.

The Text Import Wizard opens.

3.
In Step 1 of the Wizard, in the Original data type area, tell Excel what separates the columns in your file and at which row you want the imported data to be inserted, and click Next (Figure 9.24).

Figure 9.24. Choose the file's structure.


A preview of your file in the lower section of the dialog box helps you answer the questions.

4.
In Step 2, Excel guesses how you want the columns to be interpreted. If it guesses incorrectly, you can make changes here (Figure 9.25), and click Next.

Figure 9.25. Confirm the column interpretation.


5.
In Step 3, you can format columns if you wish. Click each column you want to change, and choose the data format you want to assign (Figure 9.26). The Data Preview window shows the format name at the top of each column. Click Finish.

Figure 9.26. Choose column formatting.


6.
Finally, choose whether to have the imported data inserted in the current worksheet, beginning at a particular cell (the default is the currently selected cell), or to open a new worksheet to contain the data (Figure 9.27).

Figure 9.27. Choose the destination cell or worksheet.


7.
The data is imported as you directed, and the External Data toolbar appears.


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