How to Create a Data File

By Maureen Bruen

Create a Data File
i data image by jeancliclac from

To create a data file you need software for creating ASCII, text, or plain text files. Most data files are in the format of a flat file or text file (also called ASCII or plain text). Data files can have several formats. The format you choose for a data file is directly related to the software reading the data file. The data can be delimited by a space, tab or comma or it can have no delimiters at all. Find out the best data file format for the software reading the data file before you create it.

Identify the software reading your data file and determine the best data file format to use. Microsoft Excel will be reading a space delimited data file in this example.

Click "Start > All Programs > Accessories", then select "Notepad." This will open Notepad, a text editor.

Type in, burger meat fast, and hit the "Enter" key. Type in, lettuce vegetable whole, and hit the "Enter" key again.

Click "File" then "Save" and type the name of your data file in the "File name:" section of the "Save As" dialog box.

Click "Save" and now you have a space delimited data file with three fields, food, type, and food industry.