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AOL Help: About Importing the CSV and Tab-Delimited Files Feature

This feature is designed to make it possible to import addresses into AOL Email on the Web from a comma-separated values (.CSV) or a tab-delimited (.TXT) file. Many email and contact database programs allow you to export contact information to these file formats, and most spreadsheet applications, such as Microsoft Excel, do so as well. Once you export the contacts from those programs, you can import them into AOL Email on the Web.

What are CSV and Tab-Delimited Files?

A CSV or tab-delimited file is simply a text file that contains information separated by commas or tabs. Each column represents a separate field and each row represents a separate contact record. The format evolved as a way to get information out of tables in spreadsheet or databases programs and into other similar programs.

A CSV or tab-delimited file does not have any unique or proprietary formatting. Typically, the first line has the field names (columns) for the actual entries or records that make up the rest of the file. Contact programs or email programs may use various field names but AOL Email on the Web automatically recognises the field names that are exported by Microsoft Outlook, Outlook Express, Yahoo, and Emailblocks Webmail. If your program uses different field names, you may have to rename them or edit the file's first line to match our requirements and allow the file to be imported. See the notes below for a list of some of the acceptable field names.

AOL Email on the Web recommends that you include at least the First Name, Last Name, and Email Address columns. It doesn't matter which order the columns are in, but the file must include the column headers on the first line, followed by one entry (record) per line, as in the samples below:

Example of CSV file:

First Name,Last Name,Email Address:
John, Doe, johndoe@myprovider.com
Harriet, Wong, hwong@myprovider.com
Mary Jo, Smith, mjsmith@myprovider.com

Example of Tab-delimited file:

First Name Last Name Company Email Address:
Johnathan Doe ABC Company johndoe@abccompany.com
Harriet Wong Company Inc. hwong@myprovider.com
Mary Jo Smith Any Corp. mjsmith@myprovider.com

Notes:

  • You are not limited to just the three or four fields shown above.
  • Field names are not case-sensitive.
  • Duplicate contacts are allowed, so only import the desired contacts.
  • Refer to your email program's documentation for information about exporting in the CSV or tab-delimited formats.

 

Import Addresses from a CSV or Tab-Delimited File
Importing Addresses Using the Address Book Import Assistant
Importing Addresses Using the Built-in File Import Feature
Export Contacts from Microsoft Outlook 2002 to a CSV file
Export Contacts from Microsoft Outlook Express 6 to a CSV File

 

Import Addresses from a CSV or Tab-Delimited File

There are two ways to import addresses into your address book. One is using a free program called the Address Book Import Assistant and the other way is to use the built-in file import feature. The Address Book Import Assistant will copy all of your Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Express contacts into your AOL Address Book. The built-in import feature can import CSV or tab-delimited data files.

 

Importing Addresses Using the Address Book Import Assistant

AOL provides an Address Book Import Assistant program that you can download and use for free to import your address book addresses from other applications to your AOL Address Book. This feature is only available when using AOL Email on the Web.

  1. Go to www.aol.co.uk and sign in to AOL Email on the Web using your AOL Screen Name.
  2. Click the Addresses tab on the Mailbox window.
  3. Click the Import button. This opens the Import Contacts window.
  4. Click the Get it Now! button to start downloading the free program. After downloading, the installation process will begin allowing you to start copying your addresses.

 

Importing Addresses Using the Built-in File Import Feature

If you have already saved your address book entries from other applications to your computer in either a CSV or tab-delimited format, you can import them quickly and easily using AOL Email on the Web.

  1. Go to www.aol.co.uk and sign in to AOL Email on the Web using your AOL Screen Name.
  2. Click the Addresses tab on the Mailbox window.
  3. Click the Import button. This opens the Import Contacts window.
  4. Click the Browse button and select the CSV or tab-delimited file that contains your data, or type a pathname to the file in the text field.
  5. Choose either the Comma separated (CSV) or Tab-delimited option by clicking it.
  6. Click the Import button and the contacts will be imported.
  7. All of the contacts that were imported will be displayed in a list.
  8. Click the Addresses tab to return to the Address list.

 

Export Contacts from Microsoft Outlook 2002 to a CSV file

To make it easier to import your addresses from Microsoft Outlook 2002, you should export your address book and save it as a CSV or tab-delimited file.

  1. On the File menu, click Import and Export. This opens the Import and Export wizard.
  2. Click Export to a file, then click the Next button.
  3. Choose the file type you want to export to (for example: Comma Separated Values or Tab Separated Values), then click the Next button.
  4. Select a folder to export (for example: Contact), then click the Next button.
  5. Type a file name (for example: myaddresses.csv or myaddresses.txt), then click the Next button.
  6. When you see the choice of possible actions, click Map Custom Fields (don't choose Export from Contacts folder ).
  7. Click the mappings you want to include. Map at least First Name, Last Name, and Email Address, then click the OK button.
  8. Click the Finish button to finalise the export. Now you can import this file into your AOL Email on the Web account.

 

Export Contacts from Microsoft Outlook Express 6 to a CSV File

To make it easier to import your addresses from Microsoft Outlook Express 6, you should export your address book and save it as a CSV file.

  1. On the File menu, click Export, then click Address Book.
  2. Select Text File (it will automatically save as Comma Separated Values), then click Export.
  3. Type a file name. (for example: myaddresses.csv)
  4. Choose the location to save the file to.
  5. Select the fields to export. Select at least First Name, Last Name, and Email Address and other items you want to bring into AOL Email on the Web. Then click the Finish button.
  6. Click the OK button when the alert window appears telling you the export was successful. Now you can import this file into your AOL Email on the Web account.