CSVed to the Rescue
If you work with large text input files in your BI process, a good CSV/Text editor is a must have addition in your toolkit. In my ETL workflow there are alway text/csv files to load, error files to view or one time files I need to modify. The biggest feature you need is the ability to page through large files as some will not fit into memory. This is especially important for quick turn around demos or projects where you cannot get revisions or corrected input files files.
I stumbled across CSVed, located here, after the tool I was using went to a yearly license fee. This may be a one of the best large file tools I have ever used. It is simply packed with great features, such as;
- Double click a row and a view/Edit form pops up making examining, even editing, long files a snap
- Once the file is loaded, you can change settings and refresh your view which saves the step of re-opening the file, great for finding a pipe delimited file that you thought was comma
- Full edit to add, insert or delete rows
- Great search and replace that can be specified by column
- Split and join columns and save as a new file
- Export to XML files
- If your file has column headings you can set the column number as a prefix that makes debugging far easier when looking at error files in SSIS or files that do not have the headers
My Use Case
I have an SSIS process that imports flat files from a source system which can be a couple of hundred meg. I have SSIS generate error files out of this process which are saved as text files. These are comma delimited text files that correspond to the input files that I am loading, however do not have headers. Being able to have both the error and source files open with column numbers makes debugging a lot easier. I have highlighted some of the key feature points listed above in this snapshot. (Click for larger image)
Where To Get It
The latest version is 2.3.2 published in April 2014
Check it out. Always glad to share out a new find. Let me know your opinion or any tools you use in your workflow down in the comments.