numbers as text in Excel
Thread poster: Steven Smith

Steven Smith
United Kingdom
Local time: 02:29
Member (2007)
Japanese to English
Dec 5, 2006

I have a large Excel file (230 worksheets, 300 000 numbers) to translate using Trados. Unfortunately all the numbers are formatted as text, so Trados doesn't just process them automatically. If I reformat the numbers as numbers in Excel (so that Trados ignores them) alot of them become negative and lose their brackets. This wouldn't be a problem if, after they've gone through Trados, I could restore their original values and brackets by reformatting them as text, but this doesn't seem to work.
I'm using Excel 2003 by the way.
If anyone has any ideas I'd be glad to hear them.

Steven Smith


Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:29
Member (2003)
Polish to German
+ ...
Are those numbers in spearate columns? Dec 5, 2006

If so, you can hide them.
To do so, select the corresponding colum, right click on it and select "Hide". Trados will then ignore the whole column.
After you´re finished, unhide the column(s).

Kind regards


Steven Smith
United Kingdom
Local time: 02:29
Member (2007)
Japanese to English
Thanks for your tip Dec 5, 2006

It will be useful for future reference, but in this case there's quite a lot of text above the columns so I don't think it would work. I'm probably just going to cut the numbers pre Trados and then paste them back after translating. This will be a bit tedious but I'm not too pushed for time.



Tony M
Local time: 03:29
French to English
+ ...
May depend WHY they are formatted like that? Dec 5, 2006

The use of brackets to indicate a negative quantity is one of the options for number formats (under 'Accounting', I think, though my own version is in FR!)

So if ALL the numbers are affected, you could presumably 'select all' (if you're lucky!) and set the format to number, accounting (or whatever other special format you need; you can customize them...)

In theory at least, this should not affect other cells containing only text (unless some of them have special formatting applied...)


Khalid Nasir
Local time: 05:29
English to Arabic
+ ...
use function Dec 6, 2006

if you have your number formated as text in cell A2 then you can have a numer in cell b2 by using this formula "=LEFT(RIGHT(A2,LEN(A2)-1),LEN(RIGHT(A2,LEN(A2)-1))-1)" , tell if this solves your problem


Marta Fernandez-Suarez (X)  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 02:29
English to Spanish
copy source Dec 6, 2006

Hi Steven

Probably I am about to state the obvious, but anyway. If you cannot use Jerzy's option and your segment consists in just a number, you do not need to do copy-paste, you can just do "copy-source" (Alt+insert), it takes a second.

There is another solution, but I do not know how to do it. There is an option in Trados to define something you do not want translated as "untranslatable text".



[Edited at 2006-12-06 12:08]


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:

You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

numbers as text in Excel

Advanced search

Manage your TMs and Terms ... and boost your translation business

Are you ready for something fresh in the industry? TM-Town is a unique new site for you -- the freelance translator -- to store, manage and share translation memories (TMs) and glossaries...and potentially meet new clients on the basis of your prior work.

More info »
BaccS – Business Accounting Software
Modern desktop project management for freelance translators

BaccS makes it easy for translators to manage their projects, schedule tasks, create invoices, and view highly customizable reports. User-friendly, integration, community-driven development – a few reasons BaccS is trusted by translators!

More info »

  • All of
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search