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Ignore hidden text in Excel for the Excel import filter

In Cafetran Espresso 2018, the Excel import filter allows only to specify which column to translate, but not rows nor single cells, group of cells or even entire sheets. At times clients provide us with very complicated Excel translation files, where the translation text is spreaded irregularly over different columns and raws, which makes it really hard to translate it with CT without resorting to difficult and time-consuming workarounds.

I would like to suggest to make a new Excel filter that makes it possible to ignore (not import) the hidden text specified beforehand in the Excel files. This works very nicely in other CAT tools such as DV. 

Mario: ...a new Excel filter that makes it possible to ignore (not import) the hidden text

Coincidence? This comes more or less down to a very recent ProZ question. I am by no means an Excel expert (I hate the format), but I understood from people who are, that CafeTran's filter is superior to DV's.


I don't know what DV's Excel filter you are referring to. In previous DV versions one had to red-paint any untranslatable text first, and that was not a good/practical solution if such translatable text contained red text that you were forbidden to touch. But in the current DV version you can instruct the program to ignore all hidden text upon import. As far as I know this applies to the xlsx format only, but I assure you that after hiding untranslatable text in the original Excel file (which can be a single cell, a group of cells, a column, a raw or an entire sheet) you get in DV exactly what you want in one go and in a breeze, and by unhiding the hidden text upon exportation you get a job done very neatly and without complex and time-consuming workarounds. As far as I understood, CT only offers the possibility to select which Excel *column* to translate, but not which raws nor single cells or groups of cells or even which sheet in multi-sheet files. Just think what flexibility gives you the ability to translate by temporarily excluding what you don't want to see in the translation grid, and this in one go only.

By the way, the post linked above is mine...

Mario: ...the post linked above is mine...

That's what I thought (and I am Meta Arkadia for ProZ occasions...).

I didn't refer to DejaVu really. I was referring to Selçuk who really has a lot of experience with difficult Excel files. He's a DV freak as much as a CafeTran freak, and I thought he preferred the latter. I hope he'll still show up here or on ProZ.


Hi Mario,

Did you actually try loading an Excel file with the hidden sheets or columns? CafeTran should not import them.

Hi Igor,

I tried to import an Excel file with hidden columns, and it works as expected. So far so good. But I cannot find a way to hide entire sheets: where can I find this option exactly? I cannot find in the Filter part of the file importing window

The sheets hidden in Excel should stay hidden in CafeTran as well.

Yes! Hidden sheets too do not get imported! This is good. Now, would it be simple to add in a future release the possibility to select also translatable rows? Or, even better, unifying everything in a single command "Do not import hidden text in Excel"? Am I asking too much? (Even if I haven't purchased a license yet, which I am more and more inclined to do in consideration of your active response?)

> Am I asking too much?

No, you are not. However, I avoid repeating the very same settings of MS Office or other suites - hiding columns, rows or sheets in this case. So "Do not import hidden text in Excel" should work as the default option without any need for the special command. 

Then it was all my misunderstanding! I thought that by offering the option to select translatable text CT doesn't have the ability to automatically ignore hidden text. I will test this later tonight. Many thanks. 

Mario: I will test this later tonight.

I think you should publish your findings (on ProZ as well).


woorden: I think you should publish your findings (on ProZ as well).

Just done on

Test results20:58

After a few exchanges with the CT developper and a test on an actual Excel files comprising several columns, rows and sheets, I can finally say that CT doesn't load into the translation grid any part hidden in advance with the standard Excel "Hidden" instruction. Therefore, without the user doing anything, CT imports only visible (not hidden) text, which is what I was looking for in this software.

This method is particularly convenient with certain complex Excel files containing both columns and rows which we want to hide from the translation grid, whereas the CT "Import source column" under "Filter options" allows to select only which columns (only columns) to import—not rows—and ignore the rest.

It remains to be seen whether the possibility to ignore single cells or group of cells (that don't fill up entire columns or rows) as per the method suggested by Hans Lenting, which I will try tomorrow, works as well in CT.

Thanks to Igor Kmitowski (Cafetran developper) for being so helpful and patient.

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