9 Replies Latest reply on Nov 30, 2011 6:12 AM by John Hawkinson

    Issue with Data Import

    red_aussie Level 1

      I have an issue with data import in InDesign 5.5. I have an excel file with list of items and different colums with prices (eg cost, discounted, member's price) and the first time I saved it as csv needed for indesign. All went well until I realised that the prices didn't have the $ sign included. Went back to excel and changed the colums cells to 'currency' (that to include the $ sign to all cells). Re-saved as a csv and re-imported into indesign. In the Data Merge panel, all entries have a letter "A" on the right end side that I don't know what it mean - BUT the first entry of the price column of excel it has a different description: A,A,A,A,A... When I preview the merging the price of this first column repeats all over the pages and changes the formatting that I had assigned to only reflect the first price colums. Does anyone understand what is going on? I have a spreadsheet of hundreds of entries and each entry has 3 prices, so can't do it any other way but with data merge function. Is it InDesign or Excel? Any suggestion?

      Thanks greatly.

        • 1. Re: Issue with Data Import
          John Hawkinson Level 5

          Re-saved as a csv and re-imported into indesign. In the Data Merge panel, all entries have a letter "A" on the right end side that I don't know what it mean - BUT the first entry of the price column of excel it has a different description: A,A,A,A,A..

          Look at the CSV file in TextEdit. Do you have $ signs in the columns, or not?

          If not, go back to Excel, make a new column, copy the currency column, and Paste by Values. Re-export to CSV.

          • 2. Re: Issue with Data Import

            Why not use find and replace A > $ ?

            • 3. Re: Issue with Data Import
              Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

              Better to figure out why the merge is not correct to begin with...

              • 4. Re: Issue with Data Import
                red_aussie Level 1

                You're right Peter. The issue seem with InDesign not reading correctly the imported data: it thinks that the first data need to be repeated to all pages, which is not the case. I have assigned each text box with the correct data but InDesign is changing it. I have price 1 price 2 price 3 etc. The problem is with price 1 that gets repeated over and ove again by InDesign into the merged pages. I believe it is not reading correctly the csv data. To get in touch with adobe is a miracle to find an answer: they have disassociated wiht clients but happy to flog software for thousand of dollars.

                • 5. Re: Issue with Data Import
                  John Hawkinson Level 5
                  I believe it is not reading correctly the csv data.

                  This does not match my (or others') experiences with Data Merge. Can you please show us a screenshot of the first few lines of the CSV file, and a screenshot of ID misreading it?

                  • 6. Re: Issue with Data Import
                    Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                    Are you by chance using CS5 or CS5.5, doing a multiple records per page merge (set up correctly with only one set of placeholders) and pressing the preview button before merging? If so, try the merge again WITHOUT pressing preview and tell us waht happens.

                    • 7. Re: Issue with Data Import
                      red_aussie Level 1

                      Thanks John and Peter for your support. Unfortunately I cannot provide a screenshot of the issue since of the confidential material and has to re-do the work. I have re-done all the excel correction and re-created the Indesign merge document on a PC laptop. So far 'no' problems. I have a strong suspicion that the cause has been a macro used in excel to convert text or another one that I used to add values to the colum that InDesign found issue. Definetly InDesign should have reported a problem before merging the data. Yes, I am using CS5.5 with the latest update and Excel 2010 on a Mac. Still, I would like to find out what means the letter 'A' in the Data Merge Panel, since this may have directed me to find why the multiple 'AAA...' shown in the first line in the merge panel. Again thanks John and Peter: much appreciated.

                      • 8. Re: Issue with Data Import
                        Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                        ID just reads what's in the data fields in the text file. There's really no way for the program to know if that data is valid, and if Excel has done something strange that adds a control character or alters the number of apparent fields in a record, all bets would be off.

                        • 9. Re: Issue with Data Import
                          John Hawkinson Level 5

                          Unfortunately I cannot provide a screenshot of the issue since of the confidential material

                          Well, OK, you can do this analysis yourself, it's pretty easy.

                           

                          Do what I suggested in post#1:

                           

                          Look at the CSV file in TextEdit. Do you have $ signs in the columns, or not?

                           

                          This is really simple!