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Converting Non-Columnar Data using Associated Fields
Converting Non-Columnar Data using Associated Fields
PDF2XL Support avatar
Written by PDF2XL Support
Updated over a week ago

Scroll through each section to learn ...

  • how to create associated fields

  • how to copy an associated field element to an entire page

  • how to remove blank rows between associated field elements

We would be thrilled if every PDF we received happened to be formatted in a perfect table. This would make conversion to Excel painless!
Unfortunately, this often isn’t the case and we need to be creative in the formation of our layouts and templates to get the output we need.

PDF2XL uses something call “Associated Fields” to turn something like this:

Into this:

Creating an Associated Field

It all starts with a table.
A table doesn’t necessarily need to be a collection of columns and rows - it can be just a single entry, and that’s a common use of the table function in this type of scenario.

Beginning with the first entry, draw a table (tables are orange) around the data you want in the first column. You may need to right-click and select “Change to Table”, as most single entries are automatically selected as fields (fields are blue).

Next, draw fields around the rest of the data for that entry. In your preview, you will notice that these fields end up at the top of the page.

Here is where the magic occurs!
Select the fields (use your CTRL key to select more than one), then right-click and choose “In Conversion, Show Field > With Table”.

Look what happened! Our fields are in a tidy row inline with the data in the table!

Applying an Associated Field Element to the Entire Page

But what about the rest of the entries? Do we have to repeat this process with all of them? Well, you do have to select the data, but it’s a little less involved.

Use your CTRL key to select the table and all the fields, then right-click and choose “Copy Selection”.

Move your cursor to the top left corner of the next selection and right-click. Choose “Paste Here”.

Now you have a second row of data!

If your table and fields are not properly encompassing the data, click on the 4-headed arrow and drag the selections into position.

Removing Blank Rows Between Elements

But, we don’t want that space between the rows!

No problem! Right-click on the table of the new entry and select “Append to Table Table 1”.

That’s better!

Now, you can copy the selections from the last entry and it will save the appended settings. Simply select the table and fields, right-click and choose “Copy Selection” ...

then paste to the remaining applicable sections.

Now you’re ready to convert!

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