I was told that I could open a .CSV file with Excel. However, my Microsoft Excel refuses to recognize the file.

I have tried my different ways to open it in Excel but the program didn't give me a choice to click the file open.

I am using Mac 10.4 and the Excel version is Microsoft Excel X for Mac.

  • 1
    Since CSV (comma-separated value) files are plain text, it might be worth trying to open it in TextEdit first, to make sure you really are dealing with a CSV file.
    – calum_b
    Commented Aug 26, 2011 at 16:55
  • Can you choose the file in Finder and then Open it (and what does Open With..) show?
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Sep 13, 2012 at 12:59
  • They changed the program so that it requires the file to have a '.csv' extension. Commented Mar 29, 2016 at 13:31

2 Answers 2


Assuming you have a valid/consistent CSV file, create a new workbook and then choose File -> Import. The first option on the list is "CSV file":

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  • Thank you for your answer. I appreciate it. However I checked my Excel, there is no Export function anywhere, including the File tab. Please could you advise me again.
    – FandW
    Commented Aug 29, 2011 at 14:43
  • Sorry, not familiar with the old version of Office for OS X. Mine is 2008.
    – EmmEff
    Commented Sep 11, 2011 at 16:01
  • 1
    @FandW - the answer was to use Import not export
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Sep 13, 2012 at 12:58

Here's a way to force any app to open any document :

  1. Make sure your Dock is visible.
  2. Select your .csv file in the Finder
  3. Grab it with your mouse and move it over the Excel icon in the Dock. Do not release the mouse button.
  4. Hold the Command and the Alt key on your keyboard
  5. Release the mouse button.
  • This particularly simple. By the way: step 4 is not required. (MacOS 10.11.6, Excel v15.x)
    – normanius
    Commented Oct 9, 2017 at 23:33

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