Obtaining Data from External Sources

Data are commonly obtained from external sources such as from other files, either in a spreadsheet format or in delimited text format, from other applications using the mouse to copy and paste data or from external applications such as databases or internet data streams.

5.5.1. Obtaining Data from External Files

Data which already exist in an external file can be imported into a workbook first by opening the file into a separate instance of Gnumeric and then by copying the relevant data into the desired worksheet.

Data contained in external files in the formats of several other spreadsheet applications can be opened by Gnumeric. Gnumeric can open files in Applix (TM) format, GNU Oleo format, Lotus 123 (TM) format, Microsoft Excel (TM) format, Multiplan (TM) format, OpenOffice Calc or StarOffice Calc (TM) format, Plan Perfect (TM) format, Quattro Pro (TM) format, sc and XSpread format or in the Xbase format.

Data contained in external text files which are formatted in well defined ways can also be opened by Gnumeric. Gnumeric can open files formatted in Data Interchange Format, formatted as HTML tables, or formatted in text formats such as comma separated values or tab delimited records. The opening of text format files is configurable by the user so that text files which contain data formatted in a wide variety of schemes can be imported correctly into Gnumeric. Obtaining data from these files is explained in detail in the section titled Section 14.3 ― Opening Files.

Data which are opened into a separate instance of Gnumeric can be copied and pasted into the current worksheet with the copy and paste commands as explained in Section 5.7.2 ― Cut, Copy and Paste.

5.5.2. Obtaining Data by Cut and Paste

Data can be obtained from other Gnumeric workbooks or other applications using the mouse to copy data and paste them into a worksheet. This is explained below in the section titled Section 5.7.4 ― Cut and Paste Between Gnumeric and Other Applications.

5.5.3. Getting Data from a Database

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5.5.4. Getting Data from an Internet Data Stream

Gnumeric has been connected to external data sources such as stock quotation service data streams using an experimental plugin. This requires the ability to write programming code. Information on extending Gnumeric by developing plugins can be found in the section called Section 18.4 ― Writing New Plugins and the actual computer source code can be found in the directory gnumeric/plugins/sample_datasource/ of either a distribution of Gnumeric or in a code checkout from the revision control repository.