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csv files issue

asked 2018-01-21 16:56:35 +0100

Pollik gravatar image

updated 2018-01-22 21:44:16 +0100

erAck gravatar image

On Win 10, I have Calc set as the default app to open csv files...which works as expected.

If I save the csv from Calc, then the document appears in File/Recent Documents...again, as expected.

But now, something rather odd happens. If I now open Writer to a blank page, and click on the csv in Recent Documents, it now loads the csv file into Writer, rather than Calc. It used to be case that LO would open an instance of Calc to load the csv file. (I have Writer on my Start Menu because it is the app I mostly use and it is a one click entry point...I don't really want to clutter my Start Menu with Calc as well)

Is this change of behaviour intentional? If it is intentional, it is irritating, because it now means I now either have to open a blank Calc file and then go to Recent Documents or use File Explorer to find and double click the file.

Reading this back to myself, I sound a bit peevish over an additional click, but a lot these actions are taken without conscious thought, through muscle memory and it jolts when it behaves "wrongly"

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answered 2018-01-22 21:58:59 +0100

erAck gravatar image

A csv file is primarily an ordinary text file that happens to have some (by end points contract) agreed upon structure which is not indicated by the file content. The default is to open .csv with the Calc spreadsheet application (i.e. when no document is open or a spreadsheet is open or when opening via command line), but if opening from a Writer instance then the csv is loaded into Writer. This is on purpose as otherwise there would be no means to open a text file that happens to be named .csv in Writer ...

If it is because of number of clicks and flexibility, I'd put the plain LibreOffice StartCenter into the Start Menu, and from there use either Alt+W for Writer or Alt+C for Calc document, and the default assignment of opening Recent Files works as well.

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answered 2018-01-22 18:32:15 +0100

petermau gravatar image

An interesting question. A .csv file stores tabular data (numbers and text) in plain text. Each line of the file is a data record. However, the CSV file format is not standardised. If you display a list of ,csv files with a file manager, there will be a default set by you or the operating system method of viewing this file. On my system the default is LibO-Calc-6.0.0. The other suggested options are Writer-6.0.0 and Calc and Writer 5.4.4.

When you process the file with LibO-Calc, the file is imported with a number of processing options, like character set, language, delimiters etc. as the file itself contains none of this processing information. If you export the files as .csv, the same information must be provided.

Note, I said import / export not open / save. .csv files are not a format used by LibO. If you import a .csv file whilst you are using writer, LibO rightly assumes this is what you wish to do and uses writer to display the file. As you say, this is not what you want.

I assume you are using .csv files to exchange data with another system, and not trying to use .csv to store Calc spreadsheets. You should use .ods Calc files for this.

I hope this helps a little, although not the answer you wish.

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answered 2018-01-23 11:16:48 +0100

Pollik gravatar image

Thank you to both who have replied.

The circumstances of use are bank statements. So...I will download a csv file to my downloads folder and double click to in File Explorer to open it. I may (or may not) make alterations to it before (saving it in csv) and) closing it. I don't have any particular reason for saving it as csv rather than ods.

The reason I posted the question is because, unless I have gone doolally, in Writer, I used to be able to click on a recent csv file and it would open an instance of Calc. And that this has now changed. Which probably means that a decision was taken to change the behaviour of the app. I guess I was curioius about why.

I totally accept the point about being able to open a csv in Writer and, standing back from my particular preferences or expectations, accept that it is probably the more rational behaviour.

Thank you, again. :)

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Asked: 2018-01-21 16:56:35 +0100

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Last updated: Jan 23 '18