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  • Problems importing Address Book to the Mac

    Posted on January 15th, 2006 Alan No comments

    After Internet Access and Mail, the next important item in moving Jane from Windows to the Mac is importing her Address Book.  This did not go smoothly.  I exported her contacts in a comma separated values file (.CSV) as instructed and sent it to the Mac.  During importing of this file the Address Book program did nothing when OK was pressed.  Not even a message.   Checking the Apple Support site, It was obvious that others were having the same problem.  I did not see a response from an Apple Representative in the discussion forums, but did find various complicated workarounds.  One person hinted at what the problem was:

    I opened the txt file in AppleWorks spreadsheet and there were new line characters at the beginning of every record. I did a search and replaced them with nothing. Another wrinkle was the insertion of paragraph EOL by the source application into the address fields for the second line of the address. So I had to manually adjust those records. (I don’t know where it came from since a buddy sent it). Saved a text file from AppleWorks and the import worked.

    Seems the Address Book Importer is not very robust.  I hold Apple to a higher standard because
    that’s what they demand.  How could they have dropped the ball on such a basic function?

    The source of our .CSV file was Outlook Express 6.0.  It did not offer any other export format.  I ended up importing the .CSV on a computer that had Outlook installed and exporting them as VCARDs which I then emailed as attachments (all 240 of them) to our Mac Mini.  The Address Book was able to import the VCARD files without any problem.

    Score: Computers 2 Joe User 0

    Latest cool feature Jane will love on her Mac:  Stickies Widget.

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