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Extracting data from dynamic forms


Level 2

I am new to using Livecycle and see the advantages of using dynamic forms for collecting data. I have designed several dynamic forms which include rows with 6 to 9 text fields and may be completed with 10 to 100 rows. I  have had to use text fields for collecting numeric information as many of the references start with zeros (003456).

Whilst Acrobat Pro provides for Livecycle dynamic forms to be enabled for Acrobat Reader filling and saving is extracting to Excel the best option available if you do not have the Enerprise version of Livecycle?

One problem I have in using Excel is that whilst the completed  PDF documents capture the leading zeros, when I view the Excel spreadsheet the lead zeros have been lost. I have experienced this problem in importing Excel files into Access. To overcome this I usually create five lead rows with characters in all the fields that I want Excel to define as text - otherwise it processes them as numerics.

Any better ways of extracting data from a hundred or so dynamic forms? 

2 Replies


Level 10


your problem is not the exported data, it's Excel that drops the leading zeros by default.

You can use a custom pattern to keep the leading zeros.

0#### will display intergers with up to 5 places with a leading zero.

Value:           Displayed Value:

012               012

12345          12345

0045             0045

Here an example video for telephone numbers.



Level 2

Thanks, unfortunately the web link took me a youtube in German. However, I found others in English on this subject. My problem is that Acrobat Pro's Merge data into a spreadsheet option, exports the data into an Excel spread sheet that it opens.

Can I set preferences in Excel so that when Acrobat Pro opens it will display the correct export values? Or do you mean that after Acrobat Pro has created the spreadsheet with the lost values, that I apply the custom formats on a row by row basis using 00#### to get my 003456, 012345, 123234 vales and 00 to get my 00, 01 or 12 values?