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Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

Luzern
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 3,367
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Registered: 31-07-2007

Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

One of my brood has asked me to look at his phone bill. It is on paper. I would like to get it into Excel so that I can play around ( posh word analyse) his usage to advise him what scheme he should be on.
I have tried scanning and saving a pdf file and then copying and pasting that to Excel, but when I do all the formatting of the columns is lost, so that everything is in one vertical line. I have also tried copying and pasting individual columns. That works partly only because col. 3 copying also selects col 6, and on pasting the two become muddled up.
Am I trying to do the impossible, or is there a way for the non- technical me to do what I’m attempting?
No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.
14 REPLIES
Community Veteran
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Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

Simplest way is to scan it and use a text convertor.
Then save as a .txt file and open that in Excel
Luzern
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 3,367
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Registered: 31-07-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

Quote from: Oldjim
...... text convertor........
do you mean OCR it?
No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
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Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

Yes I do - should have been more clear
Luzern
Seasoned Pro
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Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

This is a little OT. My OCR reader is OmniPage Pro 9: it came with my old Win98SE computer. Shocked  Embarrassed Are there better ones out there (preferably freeware)? I don't want my collection of moths to escape. Wink
No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

That probable still works, most come free with the scanner, probably costly to buy for a small job, get himself to adjust your scanned info
Luzern
Seasoned Pro
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Thanks: 343
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Registered: 31-07-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

@ pierre_pierre
Tat it'll work is not in doubt, but it does have its quirks, the error rate being one. I do know that the cost of progs can be high for light use, Still hoping there might be something around free or for a song, that is better.
No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

True what you say, my old one gave me lots of post op editing, the current one that came with a Lexmark all in one, just works and thats it
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

another thought, change the font of the scanned file to Courier, save as a text file, then import to Excell and set the column delimeter
Community Veteran
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Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

by the time you've faffed about with finding a free OCR, getting it working, scanning, adjusting, fiddling with the output, swearing a lot, ... you could probably have typed in all the data into Excel from scratch
(this is the sound of bitter experience talking)
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

when I was with BT from memory, you could get the data file over the Net, as you can with PN now, you just had to log onto your account, its a while since I did it
Luzern
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 3,367
Thanks: 343
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Registered: 31-07-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

Well I get my bills on the net: it's the offspring that don't!! Roll eyes Wink
No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.
itsme
Grafter
Posts: 5,924
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Registered: 07-04-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

But if they register you will find that one or two previous bills will appear. May have to wait a week for this to happen though.
Also if they register and go paperless they will save £1.25 per month.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

just been playing with a file I wanted to get into Open office, rename the TXT file to .CSV,    BINGO, it opens straight into Excel
wisty
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Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Help with getting paper phone bill to pdf and Excel (impossible?)

If I understood your original post properly, you have managed to get the text into Excel, but all in one column.
Try using the Text to Columns tools in Excel (it should be on the Data tab). That offers the choice of delimiters to decide where the columns are.