pyExcelerator - Can I read and modify an existing Excel-WorkBook?

John Machin sjmachin at
Thu Jan 31 23:11:27 CET 2008

On Feb 1, 4:37 am, Stephen Brown <sbr... at> wrote:
> Yes indeed, pyExcelerator does support reading data from excel
> spreadsheets.

I presume this is an orphaned and belated reply to the 3-message
thread in July 2006 with the same subject.

> An example of how to do this is included in the file
>  under the directory ... pyExcelerator/examples/tools
> Syntax is pretty straight forward.  extract_all = parse_xls(filename, CP
> = None)  where CP is the encoding format used within tht file.

The OP was aware of pyExcelerator's parse_xls, but required formatting
To me it seems, that pyExcelerator does not support the reading for
modification of an Excel-sheet. It allows only the "parse_xls" but I
would like to keep the "formatting" in the template.

> Uses
> same codes that xlrd uses, ie 'cp437' = US English.

An interesting way of describing it. It is *not* restricted to being
a "codepage". The arg can be any Python-supported encoding that can be
passed to str.decode to convert internal 8-bit strings to unicode.

> All you need is the "parse_xls" command and simply let it iterate
> through your spreadsheet file.

Current situation:

I am (sporadically) maintaining xlwt, a fork of pyExcelerator which
among other things fixes bugs and enables use with Python 2.3. It is
available from

xlwt.parse_xls is the same as pyExcelerator.parse_xls and thus has the
same deficiencies e.g. it reports a date as a floating-point number of
days since some more-or-less-fixed epoch and provides no indication
that the item should be interpreted as a date. It will not be
maintained, and is severely deprecated -- use xlrd instead.


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