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File Delimiters ::..

Any character or sequence of characters may be used to separate the values, but the most common delimiters are the comma, tab, and colon. The vertical bar (also referred to as pipe) and space is also sometimes used. In a comma-separated values (CSV) file the data items are delimited using commas. Column headers are sometimes included as the first line, and each subsequent line is a row of data. The lines are separated by newlines.

For example, the following fields in each record are delimited by commas and each record by newlines:

......................................................... "Date","Pupil","Grade" "25 May","Bloggs, Fred","C" "25 May","Doe, Jane","B" "15 July","Bloggs, Fred","A" "15 April","Muniz, Alvin ""Hank""","A" ......................................................... Note the use of the double quote to enclose each field. This prevents the comma in the actual field value (Bloggs, Fred; Doe, Jane and etc.) from being interpreted as a field separator. This necessitates a way to "escape" the field wrapper itself, in this case the double quote; it is customary to double the double quotes actually contained in a field as with those surrounding "Hank". In this way, any ASCII text including newlines can be contained in a field.

ASCII includes several control characters that are intended to be used as delimiters. They are: 28 file separator, 29 group separators, 30 record separators, 31 unit separators. Use of these characters has not achieved widespread adoption; some systems have replaced their control properties with more accepted controls such as CR/LF and TAB.