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About Import/Parse Templates

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About Importing and Parsing

Templates of import and parsing allow you to automate the process of retrieving information from different sources and importing it to the database. For example, with their help you can solve the following tasks:

  • Importing currency rates from the news web-sites to the database.
  • Checking incoming e-mails in Outlook and importing them to the database.
  • Importing data from a plain text file.

As you can see, the importing tasks can be divided into groups according to the type of source. You can use the following items as a source:

  • Web-page
  • Text file (txt, csv, etc)
  • Ms Word document (doc, rtf)
  • Mails from Outlook
  • Drag-and-drop data (any text dropped to the program window). Learn more....

The template itself describes the way the imported text should be parsed and what should be done with it after that. For example, if we import data on currency rates, the source text may look as follows:

12.01.2009, USD Rate=33.45
12.01.2009, EUR Rate=46.11
12.01.2009, GBP Rate=57.8

Correspondingly, the created template should:

  1. Get the text from the specified web-site with currency rates.
  2. Parse the text into lines. Then perform the following for each line:
  3. Retrieve date, name of currency and rate.
  4. Create a new record in the database.
  5. Insert the retrieved date, name of currency and rate into the record fields.

All this the parser will perform automatically. The only things we should define are the source of data, folder and type of records to which we want import text, as well as rules by which the text should be split over fields.

You can skip any of the 5 items or replace it with the script. For example, if we want to update data on currency rates and do not want to create new records, we can use the script instead of items 4 and 5:

  1. Select the record with data on a corresponding currency (using the query).
  2. Replace the value of the currency rate field with a new one.

All this can be specified in the Import/Parse Template Designer.

The created template can be selected from the "File->Import/Parse" menu or from any script, using the "Import/Parse Text" actions.

All topics in the "Import/Parse Templates" section: