Skip to content
Roo provides an interface to Open Office, Excel, and Google Spreadsheets.
Branch: master
Clone or download
Pull request Compare This branch is 598 commits behind roo-rb:master.
Fetching latest commit…
Cannot retrieve the latest commit at this time.
Type Name Latest commit message Commit time
Failed to load latest commit information.


README for Roo

Roo implements read access for all spreadsheet types and read/write access for Google spreadsheets. It can handle

  • OpenOffice
  • Excel
  • Google spreadsheets
  • Excelx
  • LibreOffice
  • CSV



There is no support for formulas in Roo for .xls files - you can get the result of a formula but not the formula itself.

Google Spreadsheet

Using Roo to access Google spreadsheets requires you install the 'google-spreadsheet-ruby' gem separately.


While Roo is licensed under the MIT / Expat license, please note that the 'spreadsheet' gem is released under the GPLv3 license.


require 'roo'

s ="myspreadsheet.ods")      # loads an OpenOffice Spreadsheet
s ="myspreadsheet.xls")           # loads an Excel Spreadsheet
s ="myspreadsheetkey_at_google") # loads a Google Spreadsheet
s ="myspreadsheet.xlsx")         # loads an Excel Spreadsheet for Excel .xlsx files
s ="mycsv.csv")                     # loads a CSV file

# You can use CSV to load TSV files, or files of a certain encoding by passing
# in options under the :csv_options key
s ="mytsv.tsv", csv_options: {col_sep: "\t"}) # TSV
s ="mycsv.csv", csv_options: {encoding: Encoding::ISO_8859_1}) # csv with explicit encoding

s.default_sheet = s.sheets.first             # first sheet in the spreadsheet file will be used

# s.sheets is an array which holds the names of the sheets within
# a spreadsheet.
# you can also write
# s.default_sheet = s.sheets[3] or
# s.default_sheet = 'Sheet 3'

s.cell(1,1)                                 # returns the content of the first row/first cell in the sheet
s.cell('A',1)                               # same cell
s.cell(1,'A')                               # same cell
s.cell(1,'A',s.sheets[0])                   # same cell

# almost all methods have an optional argument 'sheet'.
# If this parameter is omitted, the default_sheet will be used.                                      # prints infos about the spreadsheet file

s.first_row                                 # the number of the first row
s.last_row                                  # the number of the last row
s.first_column                              # the number of the first column
s.last_column                               # the number of the last column

# limited font information is available


# can accept both files and paths

xls ='./new_prices.xls')

# If the File.path or provided path string does not have an extension, you can optionally
# provide one as a string or symbol

xls ='./rails_temp_upload', extension: :xls)

# no more setting xls.default_sheet, just use this


# excel likes to create random "Data01" sheets for macros
# use this to find the sheet with the most data to parse


# this excel file has multiple worksheets, let's iterate through each of them and process

xls.each_with_pagename do |name, sheet|
  p sheet.row(1)

# pull out a hash of exclusive column data (get rid of useless columns and save memory)

xls.each(:id => 'UPC',:qty => 'ATS') {|hash| arr << hash}
#=> hash will appear like {:upc=>727880013358, :qty => 12}

# NOTE: .parse does the same as .each, except it returns an array (similar to each vs. map)

# not sure exactly what a column will be named? try a wildcard search with the character *
# regex characters are allowed ('^price\s')
# case insensitive

xls.parse(:id => 'UPC*SKU',:qty => 'ATS*\sATP\s*QTY$')

# if you need to locate the header row and assign the header names themselves,
# use the :header_search option

xls.parse(:header_search => ['UPC*SKU','ATS*\sATP\s*QTY$'])
#=> each element will appear in this fashion:
#=> {"UPC" => 123456789012, "STYLE" => "987B0", "COLOR" => "blue", "QTY" => 78}

# want to strip out annoying unicode characters and surrounding white space?

xls.parse(:clean => true)

# another bonus feature is a patch to prevent the Spreadsheet gem from parsing
# thousands and thousands of blank lines. i got fed up after watching my computer
# nearly catch fire for 4 hours for a spreadsheet with only 200 ACTUAL lines
# - located in lib/roo/worksheet.rb
You can’t perform that action at this time.