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4.1 Table Formats

TOPCAT supports a wide variety of tabular data formats. In most cases these are file formats for tables stored as single files on a disk or at the end of a URL, but there are other possibilities, for instance a table you have opened could be the result of an SQL query on a database.

Since you can load a table from one format and save it in a different one, TOPCAT can be used to convert a table from one format to another. If this is all you want to do however, you may find it more convenient to use the tcopy command line utility in the STILTS package.

The format handling is extensible, so new formats can be added fairly easily. All the table input/output is handled by STIL, the Starlink Tables Infrastructure Library; more detailed descriptions of the I/O capabilities can be found in its documentation.

The following subsections describe the available formats for reading and writing tables. The two operations are separate, so not all the supported input formats have matching output formats and vice versa.


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TOPCAT - Tool for OPerations on Catalogues And Tables
Starlink User Note253
TOPCAT web page: http://www.starlink.ac.uk/topcat/
Author email: m.b.taylor@bristol.ac.uk
Mailing list: topcat-user@jiscmail.ac.uk