Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Importing Many Files Into Excel.

Importing Many Files Into Excel

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 1, 2012)

1

Andrew asked if there is a way to import many different files into Excel, all using the same import specifications. For instance, when you choose to import a comma-delimited text file, Excel's import filter asks you a series of questions about how the import should be done. If you are importing a single file, this is not a problem. If you have fifty or sixty files to import, answering the questions over and over again can get very tedious very quickly.

The short answer is that there is no way to do a "mass import" in Excel. Some questions asked by the import filter simply need to be asked for each file. The only way around this is to create your own "import" process using a macro. The macro can either open the source file itself, or it can answer the Import Wizard questions, as it sees fit.

Of course, writing such a macro can be a daunting exercise. It is beyond the scope of ExcelTips to attempt such a macro, particularly since the process to be followed during the import can vary so much from one type of input file to another.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2225) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Importing Many Files Into Excel.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Compiling a List of Students in a Course

Need to pull just a limited amount of information from a large list? Here are a few approaches you might be able to use with ...

Discover More

Showing Filter Criteria on a Printout

When you print out a filtered worksheet, you may want some sort of printed record as to what filtering was applied to the ...

Discover More

Intelligible Names for Macros

The names you use for macros can affect what you see when you add those macros to a toolbar. This tip explains how you can ...

Discover More

Professional Development Guidance! Four world-class developers offer start-to-finish guidance for building powerful, robust, and secure applications with Excel. The authors show how to consistently make the right design decisions and make the most of Excel's powerful features. Check out Professional Excel Development today!

MORE EXCELTIPS (MENU)

CSV File Opens with Data in a Single Column

When you import a CSV file into an Excel worksheet, you may be surprised at how the program allocates the information among ...

Discover More

Importing Huge Data Files

Sometimes, when importing data created by other programs, you may find that there is too much for Excel to handle. Here's how ...

Discover More

Comma-Delimited and MS-DOS CSV Variations

Excel provides different file formats you can use to export your worksheet information. One such file format is CSV, or comma ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments for this tip:

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is one more than 2?

2012-09-03 06:45:21

Rob Land

On the assumption the import file extensions allow you to import as a fixed width, the data allows you to discriminate between the source files adequately and all files will fit into a single workbook.
Import all the data from each file as a single column (fixed width with no column breaks).
You can then paste each file's worth into a single worksheet column and use the "Text to Columns" facility to Parse (split up the columns) and use filters to extract the individual file data as required.


Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.

Links and Sharing
Share