This documentation relates to CiviCRM version 3.3. It's not maintained anymore.
Current version of documentation.

Making Microsoft Excel give you clean data to import

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  • Some non-English characters such as European accent marks will turn into question marks, and many others will lose their accent (e.g. "Tőkés" becomes "T?kes") (cause: no UTF8 support)
  • Names beginning with an accented character will lose their first character when imported into CiviCRM (e.g. a sheet from Excel would import "Ždanoka" as "danoka") (cause: no option to enclose fields in quotes)
  • Errors, strange results and data appearing in the wrong place can happen where there are blanks in the last row (cause: unconventional line ending)
  • Sheets might not import at all in some international versions of Excel, e.g. French (cause: using semicolons or tabs instead of commas as delimiters)

To stop this happening, these steps show you how to make an Excel macro that you can use instead of 'Save as' to save a more conventional CSV file of the kind that CiviCRM expects. 

(for the techies: it creates a UTF-8 CSV file with quotes escaped, fields enclosed in double quotes, commas forced as a delimiter regardless of locale and a blank column at the end - but you don't need to know that!)

Creating the macro for beginners (Excel 2007)

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