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Data File Processing

CSV Import and Export

Iterating entity data from a CSV file

You can iterate entity data from a CSV file by assigning the file with the extension '.ent.csv' and specifying the file name as 'source' in an <iterate> statement, e.g. for printing the data to the console:

<iterate type="user" source="user.ent.csv" consumer="ConsoleExporter"/>

This way, you need to have a CSV file which uses column headers and the default column separator (which is comma by default and can be set globally in the root element's defaultSeparator attribute, e.g. to a semicolon: <setup defaultSeparator=";">)

If the CSV file does not have headers or uses another separator or file encoding that deviates from the default, you need to configure the CSV import component (CSVEntitySource) explicitly with a <bean> statement and refer it later:

<setup>

    <bean id="in" class="CSVEntitySource">
        <property name="uri" value="headless-in.csv"/>
        <property name="separator" value=";"/>
        <property name="encoding" value="UTF-8"/>
        <property name="columns" value="name,age"/>
    </bean>

    <iterate type="user" source="in" consumer="ConsoleExporter"/>
</setup>

For CSV files without a header, you need to specify a comma-separated list of column names in the 'columns' property.

Creating CSV files

For creating a CSV file you must always take the same approach as above: Defining a bean with its properties and referring it as consumer:

<setup>

    <bean id="out" class="CSVEntityExporter">
        <property name="uri" value="target/headless-out.csv"/>
        <property name="columns" value="name, age, check"/>
    </bean>

    <generate type="product" count="200" consumer="out"/>
</setup>

See the Component Reference for more details.

Excel™ File Processing

When choosing to include Excel files in your data generation/anonymization, always be aware, that its data capacity is limited to 65,535 rows.

Iterating Entity Data from an Excel™ File

<iterate type="product" source="products.xls" consumer="ConsoleExporter"/>

Creating Excel™ Files

<generate type="product" count="7" consumer="new XLSEntityExporter('products.xls')">
    <attribute name="ean_code" pattern="[0-9]{13}"/>
    <attribute name="name" pattern="[A-Z][a-z]{5,12}"/>
    <attribute name="price" type="double" min="0.25" max="100.00" granularity="0.25"/>
</generate>

creates an Excel file like this:

Fixed Column Width File Processing

A Fixed Column Width (FCW) files contain data in a text table format easily readable for humans. A product list my look like this:

0539401811799 Evian Water         1.25
1347354927249 Lindt Chocolate     2.75
2335882183280 Sanbitter           6.75
9071782830384 Beluga Caviar     100.00
9965715556715 Black Truffles     85.75

Note that, since a column header may require the column to be too wide, it is often left out. Beyond its width, each column may have additional formatting requirements: - Alignment: Left, right, centered - Fixed number of fraction Digits - Padding character (for example '0' for numbers)

Another way to format the above data may be

0539401811799 Evian Water______ 001.25
1347354927249 Lindt Chocolate__ 002.75
2335882183280 Sanbitter________ 006.75
9071782830384 Beluga Caviar____ 100.00
9965715556715 Black Truffles___ 085.75

Benerator supports column format definition in a short syntax:

<width>[.<fraction digits>]<alignment>[<pad character>]

Field Description Default
width The total number of characters for the column
fraction digits The number of fraction digits to display <not used>
alignment l for left, c for centered, r for right l
pad character a character used to reach the column width, usually a space character or sometimes 0 for numbers <space>

Examples:

  • name[16l] : Print the name left-aligned with 16 characters (padding spaces at the right)

  • price[8.2r0] : Print the price right-aligned with a total of 8 characters (5 integer digits + the decimal point + 2 fraction digits), padded at the left using zeros. Example: 00033.25

The complete columns' configuration is expressed as a comma-separated list of column specifications.

The FCW support classes FixedWidthEntitySource and FixedWidthEntityExporter are in the platform package 'fixedwidth' and make use of a similar configuration API:

    <import platforms="fixedwidth"/>

    <bean id="products_file" class="FixedWidthEntityExporter">
        <property name="uri" value="shop/products.import.fcw"/>
        <property name="properties" value="ean_code[13],name[30],price[8r0]"/>
    </bean>

Iterating Entity Data of a Fixed Column Width File

For iterating data of Fixed Column Width files, you need to provide one more configuration detail than the example above: the 'entity' property tells Benerator as which entity type to interpret the file content.

<setup>
    <import platforms="fixedwidth"/>

    <bean id="products_file" class="FixedWidthEntitySource">
        <property name="uri" value="shop/products.import.fcw"/>
        <property name="entity" value="product"/>
        <property name="properties" value="ean_code[13],name[30],price[8r0]"/>
    </bean>

    <iterate type="product" source="products_file" consumer="ConsoleExporter"/>
</setup>

Creating Fixed Column Width File

<setup>
    <import platforms="fixedwidth"/>

    <bean id="products_file" class="FixedWidthEntityExporter">
        <property name="uri" value="export.fcw"/>
        <property name="columns" value="ean_code[14],name[16l],price[8.2r]"/>
    </bean>

    <generate type="product" count="7" consumer="products_file,ConsoleExporter">
        <attribute name="ean_code" pattern="[0-9]{13}"/>
        <attribute name="name" pattern="[A-Z][a-z]{5,12}"/>
        <attribute name="price" type="double" min="0.25" max="100.00" granularity="0.25"/>
    </generate>
</setup>

creates a file like this:

0539401811799 Sekyybauld         90.75
1347354927249 Flntqqwkq          55.00
2335882183280 Wdlbjkv             9.75
9071782830384 Snhhlqoqgabo       89.00
9965715556715 Exqygflwbzgkn      31.75
5500154197720 Ctiskrmjjps         5.00
4379247967662 Xmuudbkpyz         39.00

JSON File Generation and Anonymization (Enterprise Edition)

Iterating entity data from a JSON file

You can iterate entity data from a JSON file by assigning the file with the extension '.json' and specifying the file name as 'source' in an <iterate> statement, e.g. for printing the data to the console:

<iterate type="user" source="users.json" consumer="ConsoleExporter"/>

An example source file 'users.json' may look like this:

[
    {
        "name":"Alice",
        "age":23
    },
    {
        "name":"Bob",
        "age":34
    },
    {
        "name":"Charly",
        "age":45
    }
]

Creating JSON files

Generated data is exported to a JSON file by defining a consumer like this: consumer="new JsonFileExporter('gen-persons.json')"

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<setup>
    <generate type="person" count="5" consumer="new JsonFileExporter('gen-persons.json')">
        <attribute name="name" pattern="Alice|Bob|Charly"/>
        <attribute name="age" type="int" min="18" max="67"/>
    </generate>
</setup>