Importing delimiter-separated files

Wizard can import delimiter-separated files, for example, CSV and tab-delimited files exported by spreadsheet programs and database programs. However, unlike binary files, delimiter-separated files do not indicate which columns contain numeric data and which contain text data. Some care is required when importing them.

To ensure that your delimiter-separated file is successfully imported:

  1. Ensure that the first row of the file contains variable names (for example, price)
  2. Ensure that the first non-blank entry in each column reflects that column’s data type. For example, numeric columns should have a numeric value in this row, and text columns should have a non-numeric value in this row. It may be necessary to rearrange rows in the file to achieve this.
  3. Ensure that date columns conform to one the supported formats; see Importing a text column as a date column
  4. When you are ready to import, choose File > Import Tab-Delimited File (or Imported Comma-Separated Values, or Import Text File With Other Delimiter)
  5. Select your file
  6. Finally, inspect the imported data for errors, and treat appropriate columns as categories

Because of the potential for error, if your data is available in a supported binary format, it is usually better to import that instead.

See also:

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