Why do I get "Synchronization with the data source failed" when trying to use an Excel spreadsheet as a data source?

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Problem:

Why do I get "Synchronization with the data source failed" when trying to use an Excel spreadsheet as a data source?

Resolution:

One reason for this problem arises when you enter numbers in a column where the cells are formatted either as General or Numeric and you then change the cell format to Text.

The behaviour of Excel with numbers in text columns is very inconsistent. Changing the cell format for existing numbers seems to result in a different behaviour than when entering a number into a cell that is already text formatted. In the second case you get the little green triangle in the left upper corner of the cell and the warning that "The number in this cell is formatted as text or preceded by an apostrophe". Those cells with the warning shown are imported as string values. The ones without the warning are regarded as numbers, although the cell format is text. Entering the values in already text formatted cells should fix the format issue i.e. make the numbers appear as strings.

A second solution is to pre-pend all data with an apostrophe, thus forcing both SilkCentral and Excel to treat the data as a string.


Old KB# 25107
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