Copy lists and reports

You can copy lists and reports from Manager to use in word processing documents, text files, or spreadsheets. Rather than export in formats unique to any specific application, Manager makes data available in tab-separated-value (TSV) format for lists and reports. TSV-formatted data can be imported or pasted into virtually all word-processing, text-editing, and spreadsheet programs on the market.

Completed transaction forms, such as sales invoices, expense claims, journal entries, or purchase orders, cannot be copied. These forms are not data files, but presentations of data from files. Customer lists, cash account registers, or fixed asset ledgers, on the other hand, are data lists and can be copied.

Copy data from the screen display

Any list that can be copied has a Copy to clipboard button at the lower right corner below the list:

Any report that can be copied has a Copy to clipboard button near the top of the window:

The copy function copies only the data displayed on screen. It preserves any search or sort operations performed on the data prior to copying.

Northwind Traders wants to create a spreadsheet of expense claim information to support a monthly management review. The main listing of the Expense Claims tab can be copied. It is sorted according to claim amount by clicking on the Amount column heading.

The Copy to clipboard button is clicked:

Paste data into destination document

Open a word-processing, text-editing, or spreadsheet document and paste in the data. Depending on your purpose, TSV-formatted data is usually best pasted into a pre-formatted table in a word-processing document. It can usually be pasted into the first cell of a spreadsheet, where it will automatically be parsed into individual cells. (Exact behavior in the destination document depends on your operating system, application, and version.) TSV formatting is used by Manager because it is the most flexible. Functions available in the destination application can be applied to the exported data for analysis or presentation.

Northwind pastes the copied expense claims data into a spreadsheet and adjusts column widths for a suitable presentation:

If desired, Northwind could also create charts or graphs from the data using spreadsheet capabilities.

When pasting into a spreadsheet, date and number formatting in Manager and your spreadsheet program must be compatible to achieve common data interpretation. Typically, if number or date formats are not compatible, pasted content will be interpreted as text by the spreadsheet application. Text format may be acceptable if no calculations are required. But if number or date formats are needed, text to number or date format conversions are often available in the spreadsheet application. In some spreadsheet applications, regional settings must be modified to achieve compatibility. Pay particular attention to ambiguous date formats and decimal separators. Consult your spreadsheet documentation for further information.

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