Importing Excel files
To import data into Prism (Windows only) directly from an Excel XLS file:
Start from a data table and move insertion point to the cell that will become the upper-left corner of the imported data. Click on the Import button on the Prism toolbar. Whenever possible, transfer data from Excel using copy and paste.
Prism will show you the Import and Paste Special dialog, which will let you choose whether to embed or link to the original file, and also will let you filter and rearrange the data as you bring it into Prism.
Limitations to importing Excel files directly
If your Excel workbook (spreadsheet file) has several worksheets (tabs), Prism only reads one – the one that was selected when the file was saved. Any other worksheets are invisible to Prism.
When importing data from an Excel file, Prism launches Excel invisibly, and asks Excel to send the data to Prism. So Prism can only import an Excel file if Excel is available on the same computer as Prism. Because Excel has to be launched in the background, importing an Excel file can take much longer than importing a text file.
Importing an Excel file requires an OLE (Object Linking and Embedding) connection between Prism and Excel. This is a complicated process, requiring the coordination of Excel, Prism, and various Windows components. While it works fine on most computers, it simply doesn't work on some computers. Because Macintosh computers don't support OLE, importing Excel files directly isn't possible with Prism Mac.
You'll rarely want to import an entire Excel spreadsheet into Prism. While you can restrict rows and columns to import on Prism's Import dialog, in most cases it is easier to simply copy and paste the appropriate range.
Importing text files
All spreadsheet and statistics programs can export blocks of data as a text file, separating adjacent columns with commas, semicolons, or tabs. Text files commonly have extensions such as .TXT, .DAT, .CSV (comma separated value), or .PRN (printer). Some programs refer to these files as ASCII files rather than text files.
To import data into Prism from a text (ASCII) file:
Start from a data table and move insertion point to the cell in the data table that will become the upper-left corner of the imported data. Click on the Import button on the Prism toolbar.
Prism will show you the Import and Paste Special dialog, which will let you choose whether to embed or link to the original file (Windows only), and also will let you filter and rearrange the data as you bring it into Prism.
Note that it is not sufficient that a file have an extension (file type) such as txt or dat. The file has to be a plain text file. If a file is not a text file, renaming it to have a different extension won’t help.