[R] Problem with RODBC

Dieter Menne dieter.menne at menne-biomed.de
Wed Jul 20 08:56:41 CEST 2011

David Scott-6 wrote:
> I have been trying to read some data from an Excel workbook without 
> success.
> ...
>  > faults <- sqlFetch(channel, sqtable = 'Data',
> +                    colnames = FALSE, as.is = TRUE)
>  > faults
> [1] "HY001 -1040 [Microsoft][ODBC Excel Driver] Too many fields defined."
> [2] "[RODBC] ERROR: Could not SQLExecDirect 'SELECT * FROM [Data$]'"

I have given up using odbc/Excel without named ranges, but I know it works
sometimes. xlsReadWrite works well for whole sheets, while the gdata/Perl
solutions can be terribly slow (minutes instead of seconds) with large

I had seen the message above before, and it had to do with some invisible
characters in the fields. I managed to get it to work by exporting value of
the sheet, which seems to do a cleanup. Alternatively, a Copy/PasteValue.
After that, my curiosity was satisfied, and I returned to named ranges or


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