Excel Data to browser … November 19th, 2003

Vinod Kumar

I seem to have caught up with the Excel fever oflate. And here are some of the most requested questions on Excel at the newsgroups. Interesting that we use Office products more that we expect the same at the Web Apps also …

1. The simple solutions is we can use ASP.NET to generate a CSV file of Mime Type text/plain or text/csv and write it back to the browser. This solutions is used by tons of apps all around the world. I think we donot need to talk more on this.

2. We can use ASP.NET to generate an XML-SS document and write it back to the browser. Yet another way to add to the list in 1. This is not a common method for sure … Read through the KB article …

3. We can take advantage of the ASP.NET DataGrid’s ability to generate HTML tables quickly and return the page with a Mime Type of application/vnd.ms-excel.  Here’s a great example on how to create these reports. The FAQ you get most of the times at the newsgroups.

4. Use ExcelWriter on the server side to create the Report. Not many people go for this as there is a cost involved and we build dependency on the third party tools.

5. Automate Excel on the ServerSide. The not recommended way of working for sure. Office objects are not optimized for such working. And in a multi scenario situation the code can break and kill your server …

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