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  1. What Is
July 12, 2016updated 22 Sep 2016 12:48pm

What is CSV?

Find out what CSV is.

By James Nunns

CSV stands for comma separated value, it is a type of file which allows data to be saved in a table structured format.

A CSV stores tabular data in plain text where each life of the file is a data record and each record consists of one or more fields, separated by commas.

Also recognised as a common data exchange that is widely supported by consumer, businesses, and scientific applications, a CSV is commonly used for moving tabular data between programs that natively operate on incompatible formats.

Although widely used in computers the CSV is a data format that pre-dates personal computers by more than a decade.

In 1972 the IBM Fortran compiler under OS/360 supported them.

Now commonly known as a specially formatted plain text file which stores spreadsheet or basic database-style information, they are sometimes also called comma delimited files.

Microsoft Excel is one of the most common examples of a program that uses CSV.

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