Can I use a Writer Document as Data for Base?

Hello, I have LibreOffice suite and I am attempting to create a data base using Base. The thing is that the data that I want to enter into the DB is on a writer doc and it is huge (1400 pages) Basically it is a catalog and I would like to put it in Base to make it more usable and searchable by key phrases and stats. Each of the entries has massive amounts of text and I would prefer to not to have to retype it all in varcha fields for several reasons. Is there a way I can link the individual pages to specific entries in base?

Please do not post questions as Wiki. It helps no one.

The solution most likely involves parsing the catalog with a script and inserting the data into appropriate fields. A massive amount of text can be inserted into a single database field for searching. Please edit the question to give a simplified example catalog entry. See guidelines for asking.

@jimk You are correct about large amounts of data as long as you are not dealing with HSQL embedded (this is disaster waiting to happen). If I would have to guess, this is a person new to DB’s.

What would you like to know? One of the entries has a word count of 3181 words. The document is in odt format (writer). I am going through the document to minimize the formatting right now. I have built databases before using access, but this is my first time using base and attempting something this big or complex. The text that I want to enter is not meant for searching, I have other fields set up for that, the text is just information.

Sorry about the wiki thing, first time using this service, guess I missed a step.

“What would you like to know?” Unless you provide an example such as a simplified catalog entry, we may not be able to offer specific help.


First, you cannot ‘link’ pages to entries. You can have a link to a document but size can be a problem.

As for using the data within the document to create a database, it is possible but most likely in your case not practical. You can in Base use .txt or .csv files as the basis for tables although most of these have limited abilities. Also to be usable the fields must be consistent (same location - FieldA separator FieldB separator FieldC) and separated from each other with a common separator - , or ; or {TAB} or (space). If you had (or can create) a file in this format from your document, then you would be able to create a table from it.

If this answers your question please tick the :heavy_check_mark: (upper left area of answer). It helps others to know there was an accepted answer.

Any suggestions on what I can do to achieve what I am attempting? I.E. programs, method or resource? I am well versed in most office style suites and Adobe.

Can’t make any suggestions as I don’t have any idea what your data looks like. I would first look for stability in would be fields such as first five characters = field1; last 12 = field2. It is difficult without some more input on the existing data structure.

Text is just a plain ODT writer doc. I am minimizing the formatting (removing bold, underlined, coloured txt etc) largest entry is around 3100 words. The text doesn’t need to be searchable, just available to the user. I have other fields set up for searching.

It is understood it is a text document. You also state you have built databases before. HSQLDB embedded is the database used by default in Base which is not for large amounts of data.

So you must know that a database consists of records and records consist of fields. So, in your document, what determines a record? How, in the document, is one record distinguished from another? What in that record is a field? How is field separation determined? Consistent throughout? Just some questions.