Thwarted. Importing "Note Entry" fields via Excel

Environment: Win10, with Codebook, and iPhone app 3.3.9 (565)

I give in! I’ve successfully exported entires from my “old” password manager, into
Excel. Manipulated them into CodeBook format*, and can import any record
EXCEPT those that have “Note Entry” field.

I’ve tried:

  • having field order exactly as per Codebook export.
  • saved in all flavours of CSV / MS-DOS CSV / MAC CSV
  • explored in detail the CR/LF combinations using Notepad++, but no obvious differences.

If I delete the Note Entry column using Excel, then poof, 336 records import nicely.
All beautifully formatted.

Any suggestions on how to fathom this?

  • Was a tedious task, because old format used rows with: fieldname1,fieldvalue1,fieldname2,fieldvalue2,etc

The plot thickens…

If I label the “Note Entry” field, as say “Notes”, then that imports cleanly too.

  • I can see the whole multi-line field in the Windows app, BUT
  • On iPhone app, I only get a one line view, with “…” at the end, hinting at more content.

To see that illusive “…” content, I use iOS Copy-n-Paste into the iOS Notes app.

So, I could use Windows Codebook as is, and see everything, but the iPhone app is a bit paintul for the Notes field (and I still can’t get “Note Entry” field working). But, better than no records at all, which is my alternative.

Hi @CaptGiro

Thanks for choosing Codebook and posting here, although I’m sorry for the trouble with export/import.

Some background and further explanation of Note Entry’s vs Note Fields:

Within Codebook, a “Note Entry” is considered a stand alone entry and intended for larger note content – for example a journal entry, or a short story. Whereas a “Note” field is intended for more concise notes associated with an already existing entry – for example if you have a credit card entry with the CC number, expiration date, cvc, and maybe you would put a note in to remind you if it was a business card or a personal card, or what the interest rate is or just any reminder to yourself about it.

Note Fields are associated with a standard Entry, but are a little different than regular fields because they’re intended to display multi-line content. But because of the screen size on iOS we limit what’s displayed (on the fields view) to about 4 lines – you can view the complete content by clicking on the note.

So back to your current issue:

If the Note Content you’re attempting to import falls into the “Note Field” type, you’ll want to use the “Note” (without the s) as the excel sheet column header. Because you used “Notes” (with the s) as the column header, Codebook took this as meaning you’d like to import them as a field with “Notes” name, but Plain Text mode (rather than Note mode). Each field label also has a mode associated with it. You can change and customize these labels/modes within File → Customize labels (in Codebook for Windows), and Settings → Customize Labels (in Codebook for iOS).

Because you’ve already got all your data imported (your note fields as “Notes” label with plaintext mode), there’s another easier way of handling it within Codebook itself, here are the steps:

  1. On Codebook for Windows, go to File → Customize Labels. You should see your “Notes” field in there. Select that row, then click the Merge button.
  2. From the Dropdown that shows in the next Window, select Note (with no s) and click the Merge button – this will merge all your existing “Notes” fields into the “Note” field label (associated with the “Note” mode).
  3. Once that’s complete, sync your database with iOS again and see if it correctly displays over there for you now (it should show 4 lines of text content in the fields view as mentioned above).

Please let me know if this clears things up, if you’re able to merge your “Notes” label into the “Note” label and get your “Note” field content displaying correctly on iOS now.

If you feel your Note content is more suited for Note Entry’s I can help your further troubleshoot the import issues with that, just let me know. Thanks!


Thanks Micah! All sorted. I think I’d gone blind to “Note” vs “Notes” vs “Note Entry”. As you suggested, I changed my column name from “Notes” to “Note” and everything’s working beautifully (I still had the old export file - and nothing had changed today). Keep up the good work - looking forward to auto-sync… :wink:


Excellent, Glad I could help.

Just in case anyone else is experiencing difficulties importing Note Entry’s, Here’s a simple example of a CSV with a couple Note Entry’s in it:

Category,Entry,"Note Entry",Password
Notes,,"Journal Entry From 10-12-2017: It was a good day!",,
Passwords,"Website Login",,MySecur3P4ssword!
Notes,,"Journal Entry From 10-13-2017: Even better than yesterday!",,

A Note Entry’s entry name is determined by the first line of the Note, so there’s no need to fill in the “Entry” column (it will be overwritten if you enter content into it).

There’s additional information about importing your data into Codebook here