Issue 52635 - TAB-delimited text files with .xls extension should open in Spreadsheet application
Summary: TAB-delimited text files with .xls extension should open in Spreadsheet appli...
Status: CLOSED DUPLICATE of issue 23078
Alias: None
Product: Calc
Classification: Application
Component: open-import (show other issues)
Version: OOo 1.1.3
Hardware: All All
: P3 Trivial (vote)
Target Milestone: ---
Assignee: spreadsheet
QA Contact: issues@sc
Keywords: oooqa
Depends on:
Reported: 2005-07-29 18:49 UTC by philippe_rigault
Modified: 2005-08-08 11:08 UTC (History)
2 users (show)

See Also:
Issue Type: DEFECT
Latest Confirmation in: ---
Developer Difficulty: ---


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Description philippe_rigault 2005-07-29 18:49:09 UTC
TAB-delimited text files with .xls extension have always been loadable    
directly in MS Excel as a regular Workbook.     
This is a _great_ thing, for it has been the favored way by many to   
interchange unformatted spreadsheets across operating systems (avoiding in   
particular the horrible inconsistencies with csv across different   
language/countries).   behaviour with such files is to force opening them in the word 
processor (OOo-writer), even if one does an Open/Import from the Spreadsheet 
application (OOo-calc). This is very wrong because it is both useless (no 
longer considered a table/spreadsheet) and incompatible with standard MS Excel 
behaviour with its _own_ file formats. 
Correct behaviour is to open _directly_ TAB-delimited text files with .xls 
extension in the spreadsheet application. Directly means bypassing the 
separator-recognition step (it must be tab if the file is text and the 
extension is xls).
Comment 1 Regina Henschel 2005-07-29 23:41:44 UTC
Please read the discussion in issue 11802 and issue 45469. This issue is not a
defect and as enhancement, I guess, it will be set to "wontfix" by the developers.
Comment 2 philippe_rigault 2005-07-30 00:22:10 UTC
Here, we are not in the case of 11802 and 45469. We are talking about more 
than just a tab-delimited text file, but one that has the exact same extension 
(or mimetype) as a MS-Excel file. Such a file _IS_ an Excel file for all 
intents and purposes. 
The default behaviour of OOo with regards to _all_ MS Excel files (which Excel 
opens directly of course) is to open them directly in OOo-calc. The user 
should not have to tweak _any_ preference for that, it should be the default 
So this really is a bug. 
Please also note that the suggestion in 11802 and 45469to use CSV rather than 
tab-delimited .xls files is _bogus_ because Excel behaves horribly across 
locales (In French, for example, CSV means semicolon-separated-values, so 
opening a french CSV in a en_US locale makes a complete mess). Excel is the 
real the culprit there, but the point is that CSV is a _bad_ idea to exchange 
unformatted spreadsheets if one wants to be interoperable with Excel.  
Comment 3 Regina Henschel 2005-07-30 13:19:18 UTC
Faking the extension will not change the file type. For example, you cannot open
such a file in "Microsoft Excel 97 Viewer" and also the excel import filter of
OOo will fail. You can set the extension to what you want, the file type will
remain "text". To be an excel-file it needs a specific header and coding in a
specific way.
The file type detection of OOo is designed not to use the extension but the real
file type. So it works as designed and therefore is no defect. You can force OOo
to open it in Calc, when you select the correct filter in the file open dialog.
But be aware the correct filter is not "Excel" but "Text csv".
If you don't like this behavior (as other people who use SAP), you have to write
an enhancement. There are already two enhancements which concern with this
problem, issue 8967 and issue 23078. 

*** This issue has been marked as a duplicate of 23078 ***
Comment 4 frank 2005-08-08 11:08:36 UTC
and closed