'Convert XLS' FAQ

MS Excel Conversion and Sheet Manipulation Utility


Questions and Answers

Office has detected a problem with this file. To help protect your computer this file cannot be opened.

Trust Center Error Message. Opening an Excel file converted with the 'Convert XLS' method.

Excel files created with the  'Convert XLS' conversion method may exhibit this issue. If this is the case then: For Office 2007 and greater you must add a TRUSTED LOCATION for those input files you are using.

Add a trusted location - MS Excel

  1. Click the File tab.
  2. Under Help, click Options; the Options dialog box appears.
  3. Click Trust Center.
  4. Click Trust Center Settings.
  5. In the Trust Center, click Trusted Locations.
  6. Click the Add new location button; the Trusted Locations dialog box appears.
  7. Click Browse to find the folder; select a folder and then click OK.

Trust Center Add Trusted Location

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Microsoft Excel cannot open or save any more documents because there is not enough available memory or disk space...

The solution has nothing to do with the actual problem. Office now has some kind of "protected-mode" feature, which prevents office programs from doing certain things under certain conditions. - One of them is to stop excel from opening attachments coming from outlook. Go to Excel options, Trust Center, Settings, and uncheck all the options about "protected view".

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I'm getting an "Object Variable or With Block not set" error

'Convert XLS' is having difficulty opening the INPUT file. There may be several reasons for this. Try opening the input file from within MS Excel to see if it gives you an error. You may have to add a TRUSTED LOCATION if the INPUT file is not in a trusted folder.

MACROs have also been known to cause issues of this sort. Try disabling or deleting the MACROs in the INPUT file to see if that helps.

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Excel complains no printer is installed when converting to PDF

Within Windows: Just select any generic printer as a 'Default Printer' under Control Panel\Devices and Printers. Select a general text printer and install the driver.

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How Do I take the contents of a CSV file and place it into a pre-formatted Excel (XLS) file?

One of our online training videos illustrates how to do this. Briefly:

The secret is to have a 'master template Excel' file, let's call it Template.XLS.  Template.XLS will have all the formatting you want, even formula's if you so desire, but it will be empty of data.  You'll need to do the following steps: 

  1. Convert the CSV file to a simple Excel file with data only in it, call it Simple.XLS
  2. Copy the data from Simple.XLS to Template.XLS using special process 101

 You could optionally do it more elaborately:

  1. Convert the CSV file to a simple Excel file with data only in it, call it Simple.XLS
  2. Make a copy of Template.XLS and call it Target.XLS
  3. Copy the data from Simple.XLS to Target.XLS using special process 101

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When Converting an XLS/XLSX file with the MS Excel method, the data is not refreshed/updated

Beginning with version 6.03 (May 24th 2012) of 'Convert XLS': Conversion of XLS/XLSX files that require a significant amount of time load data content or to calculate now have a new entry in the programs ini file, CX_SearchHistory.INI.  To cause 'Convert XLS' to issue a RefreshAll() command and wait x number of milliseconds add this line immediately below the [frmMain] line:


For example, to delay 30 seconds (30000 milliseconds) it would look similar to this:


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 Can I get an ERRORLEVEL or ERRORCODE when using the command line?

Yes, you can. Use the /K switch to get an error code. Here is a sample batch file.

@Echo off
Set ConvertXLS="C:\Program Files\Softinterface, Inc\ConvertXLS\ConvertXLS.EXE"

%ConvertXLS% /S C:\in\simple.csv /T"C:\in\simple.xlsx" /F6 /C51 /M2 /D /K /N"^^59" /L"C:\IN\LOG-FILE.LOG"

ECHO. The current errorlevel is %ERRORLEVEL%

if ERRORLEVEL 3 GOTO Label_Missing_Invalid_Arguements
if ERRORLEVEL 2 GOTO Label_Error_occurred_during_conversion

ECHO The conversion was successful
Goto Label_CLEANUP

Goto Label_CLEANUP

ECHO An error occurred during conversion, Use /V or /L for more info
Goto Label_CLEANUP

ECHO Missing required or invalid command line argument(s)
Goto Label_CLEANUP



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When using the 'Convert XLS' conversion method, some characters (i.e. diacritic marks like in Czech, Polish, Swedish, Spanish, French, etc.) are not coming out properly.

Be certain you have the properly installed/setup language settings in the Control Panels\Regional Settings.

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Fixed Width Profiles: Backing them up? Where are they located?

1. Run 'Convert XLS'
2. Press F3
3. Click the EDIT button
4. From within the text editor go to the FILE\SAVE AS menu item and when the dialog box opens up, note the folder location of where your fixed width profiles are stored.
5. You may exist the editor at this point.
6. Optionally: Copy the Profiles from the old to the new system using Windows Explorer

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I get the following error when I run from the command line

"'ConvertXLS' is not recognized  as an internal or external command, operable program or batch file."

Important: To use the command line successfully you must do one of the following:

  • Set the path in your environment variables to the location of ConvertXLS.EXE

  • Use the full path in the command line (with double quotes) like so:

"C:\Program Files\Softinterface, Inc\Convert XLS\ConvertXLS.EXE" /S"C:\test\test.csv" /T "C:\test\test.xls" /C-4143 /F6 /M2 /V

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Converting to Excel when a file begins with "ID..."

If your original file begins with the letters "ID", your file will not convert to Excel.  You need to move the letters "ID" out of the position where it is the first thing in the file to another location in the file.

For example, if your CSV file looks like this:

ID1234, comma, delimited, data
more, comma, delimited, data...

removing the ID, or placing it after the 1234 will fix the problem.

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Can this application run on VMWare or other virtualization software?


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How do I convert an XLS file to a DOC file?

Convert the worksheet first to an HTML file, and give it a *.DOC extension.  For example the target file should be something like:


And the target file type should be HTML.

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Which versions of Excel can 'Convert XLS' read without using MS Excel?

The 'Convert XLS' conversion method supports the following file types.

Excel 5.0 BIFF5
Excel 7.0 (Excel 95) BIFF7
Excel 8.0 (Excel 97) BIFF8
Excel 9.0 (Excel 2000)
Excel 10.0 (Excel XP)
Excel 11.0 (Excel 2003)

XLS, XLSX files can be read for versions 2007 and higher.

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When converting to HTML (with the 'MS Excel' method) the encoding is not correct.

Check the Excel Options (within MS Excel). See the advanced\Web Options\Encoding tab as shown below.

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Any other known bugs or Issues?

No issues at this time.  See Revision History for version to version details.  Also, Please submit a bug if you find one.

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