This is the dumbest thing I've done in a while...
September 8, 2011 11:19 AM   Subscribe

I desperately need help importing a CSV file as EMAIL into Outlook 2010 inbox.

We use a ticket tracking system at my work. Long story short, I put in the wrong user info, the program wiped the inbox of a co-worker and exported all his emails as tickets.

It has the ability to export to CSV or PDF. I need to RE-import these emails to his Outlook inbox (luckily only about 300 as his folders were left untouched).

When I attempt to re-import these to Outlook I get an error message about the "CSV translator" not working when attempting to build a field map. Is there a program that auto-formats? If not, is there a resource for correctly formatting these?
posted by lattiboy to Computers & Internet (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
To add onto what odinsdream said: you should import a test record or two first, with just about every field that might be important filled with test data. For instance, (just making up the column titles, and using "+" as a tab character):

TestLine1+John Able+Jim Baker+1/2/2011+Business+Inbox+"This is a test."
TestLine2+John Charlie+Jim Delta+3/4/2010+Personal+Draft+"This is a 2nd test."

If you look, you'll see that I changed every field between the two examples, and no 2 fields share the same data. That will help assure you that it was imported correctly.
posted by IAmBroom at 12:35 PM on September 8, 2011

Also, the exported file should be in exactly the right format for import... if that's not obvious.

If it won't import, either there's a problem in the data (the exporter didn't balance the quotation marks around text, or output an "illegal" character somewhere...), or with the import engine itself - in which case, good luck. :(
posted by IAmBroom at 12:51 PM on September 8, 2011

Best answer: One more thing: I've had problems like this in the past, trying to import a text file into my Outlook Contacts & Appointments. I found that double-quotes (") could cause problems.

The exported data probably uses these to contain multi-line text, and does something like turning pre-existing quotes into a special sequence like """ or \". So,
Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower"
might become (in the exported CSV file):
"Dylan's """All Along the Watchtower""""

Your goal would be to replace all the double-quotes with single quotes, thus:
"Dylan's 'All Along the Watchtower' "
(space inserted before the final double-quote to make it clearer to read)
posted by IAmBroom at 12:56 PM on September 8, 2011

So just reload from backups, there ARE backups, right?

You'd need to better define what format has been created by the ticket software. Can you perhaps ask the developers for the least problematic way to correct this?

There's a lot to an e-mail message beyond to, from, subject and body. Just what fields or data is 'important'? It's often better/faster/easier to focus on only what's required not trying to make 'everything' come back.
posted by wkearney99 at 6:30 PM on September 10, 2011

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