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xlsx generation with charts, images, automated column width, customizable styles and full schema validation. Axlsx excels at helping you generate beautiful Office Open XML Spreadsheet documents without having to understand the entire ECMA specification. Check out the README for some examples of how easy it is. Best of all, you can validate your…
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Axlsx: Office Open XML Spreadsheet Generation

Build Status

IRC: / #axlsx
Author: Randy Morgan
Copyright: 2011
License: MIT License
Latest Version: 1.0.15
Ruby Version: 1.8.7, 1.9.2, 1.9.3

Release Date: January 6th 2012


Axlsx is an Office Open XML Spreadsheet generator for the Ruby programming language. With Axlsx you can create excel worksheets with charts, images, automated column width, customizable styles, functins, merged cells and auto filters as well as full schema validation. Axlsx excels at helping you generate beautiful Office Open XML Spreadsheet documents without having to understand the entire ECMA specification.

If you are working in rails, or with active record see:

There are guides for using axlsx and acts_as_xlsx here:

Help Wanted

I'd really like to get rid of the depenency on RMagick in this gem. RMagic is being used to calculate the column widths in a worksheet based on the content the user specified. If there happens to be anyone out there with the background and c skills to write an extenstion that can determine the width of a single character rendered with a specific font at a specific font size please give me a shout.

Feature List

**1. Author xlsx documents: Axlsx is made to let you easily and quickly generate profesional xlsx based reports that can be validated before serialiation.

**2. Generate 3D Pie, Line and Bar Charts: With Axlsx chart generation and management is as easy as a few lines of code. You can build charts based off data in your worksheet or generate charts without any data in your sheet at all.

**3. Custom Styles: With guaranteed document validity, you can style borders, alignment, fills, fonts, and number formats in a single line of code. Those styles can be applied to an entire row, or a single cell anywhere in your workbook.

**4. Automatic type support: Axlsx will automatically determine the type of data you are generating. In this release Float, Integer, String and Time types are automatically identified and serialized to your spreadsheet.

**5. Automatic column widths: Axlsx will automatically determine the appropriate width for your columns based on the content in the worksheet.

**6. Support for automatically formatted 1904 and 1900 epocs configurable in the workbook.

**7. Add jpg, gif and png images to worksheets

**8. Refernce cells in your worksheet with "A1" and "A1:D4" style references or from the workbook using "Sheett1!A3:B4" style references

**9. Cell level style overrides for default and customized style object

**10. Support for formulas

**11. Support for cell merging via worksheet.merged_cells

**12. Auto filtering tables with worksheet.auto_filter


To install Axlsx, use the following command:

$ gem install axlsx


 require 'axlsx'

 p =
 wb = p.workbook

A Simple Workbook

  wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Basic Worksheet") do |sheet|
    sheet.add_row ["First Column", "Second", "Third"]
    sheet.add_row [1, 2, 3]

Using Custom Styles

 wb.styles do |s|
   black_cell = s.add_style :bg_color => "00", :fg_color => "FF", :sz => 14, :alignment => { :horizontal=> :center }
   blue_cell =  s.add_style  :bg_color => "0000FF", :fg_color => "FF", :sz => 20, :alignment => { :horizontal=> :center }
   wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Custom Styles") do |sheet|
     sheet.add_row ["Text Autowidth", "Second", "Third"], :style => [black_cell, blue_cell, black_cell]
     sheet.add_row [1, 2, 3], :style => Axlsx::STYLE_THIN_BORDER

Using Custom Formatting

 wb.styles do |s|
   date = s.add_style(:format_code => "yyyy-mm-dd", :border => Axlsx::STYLE_THIN_BORDER)
   padded = s.add_style(:format_code => "00#", :border => Axlsx::STYLE_THIN_BORDER)
   percent = s.add_style(:format_code => "0000%", :border => Axlsx::STYLE_THIN_BORDER)
   wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Formatting Data") do |sheet|
     sheet.add_row ["Custom Formatted Date", "Percent Formatted Float", "Padded Numbers"], :style => Axlsx::STYLE_THIN_BORDER
     sheet.add_row [, 0.2, 32], :style => [date, percent, padded]

Styling Columns

 wb.styles do |s|
   percent = s.add_style :num_fmt => 9
   wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Styling Columns") do |sheet|
     sheet.add_row ['col 1', 'col 2', 'col 3', 'col 4']
     sheet.add_row [1, 2, 0.3, 4]
     sheet.add_row [1, 2, 0.2, 4]
     sheet.add_row [1, 2, 0.1, 4]
     sheet.col_style 2, percent, :row_offset => 1

Styling Rows

 wb.styles do |s|
   head = s.add_style :bg_color => "00", :fg_color => "FF"
   percent = s.add_style :num_fmt => 9
   wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Styling Rows") do |sheet|
     sheet.add_row ['col 1', 'col 2', 'col 3', 'col 4']
     sheet.add_row [1, 2, 0.3, 4]
     sheet.add_row [1, 2, 0.2, 4]
     sheet.add_row [1, 2, 0.1, 4]
     sheet.col_style 2, percent, :row_offset => 1
     sheet.row_style 0, head

Styling Cell Overrides

 wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Cell Level Style Overrides") do |sheet|
     # cell level style overides when adding cells
     sheet.add_row ['col 1', 'col 2', 'col 3', 'col 4'], :sz => 16
     sheet.add_row [1, 2, 3, "=SUM(A2:C2)"]
     # cell level style overrides via sheet range
     sheet["A1:D1"].each { |c| c.color = "FF0000"}
     sheet['A1:D2'].each { |c| = Axlsx::STYLE_THIN_BORDER }

Add an Image

 wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Images") do |sheet|
   img = File.expand_path('examples/image1.jpeg') 
   sheet.add_image(:image_src => img, :noSelect => true, :noMove => true) do |image|
     image.start_at 2, 2

Asian Language Support

 wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Unicode Support") do |sheet|
   sheet.add_row ["日本語"]
   sheet.add_row ["华语/華語"]
   sheet.add_row ["한국어/조선말"]

Using formula

 wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Using Formulas") do |sheet|
   sheet.add_row ['col 1', 'col 2', 'col 3', 'col 4']
   sheet.add_row [1, 2, 3, "=SUM(A2:C2)"]

Merging Cells

 wb.add_worksheet(:name => 'Merging Cells') do |sheet|
     # cell level style overides when adding cells
     sheet.add_row ["col 1", "col 2", "col 3", "col 4"], :sz => 16
     sheet.add_row [1, 2, 3, "=SUM(A2:C2)"]
     sheet.add_row [2, 3, 4, "=SUM(A3:C3)"]
     sheet.add_row ["total", "", "", "=SUM(D2:D3)"]
     sheet["A1:D1"].each { |c| c.color = "FF0000"}
     sheet["A1:D4"].each { |c| = Axlsx::STYLE_THIN_BORDER }

Generating A Bar Chart

 wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Bar Chart") do |sheet|
   sheet.add_row ["A Simple Bar Chart"]
   sheet.add_row ["First", "Second", "Third"]
   sheet.add_row [1, 2, 3]
   sheet.add_chart(Axlsx::Bar3DChart, :start_at => "A4", :end_at => "F17") do |chart|
     chart.add_series :data => sheet["A3:C3"], :labels => sheet["A2:C2"], :title => sheet["A1"]

Generating A Pie Chart

 wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Pie Chart") do |sheet|
   sheet.add_row ["First", "Second", "Third", "Fourth"]
   sheet.add_row [1, 2, 3, "=PRODUCT(A2:C2)"]
   sheet.add_chart(Axlsx::Pie3DChart, :start_at => [0,2], :end_at => [5, 15], :title => "example 3: Pie Chart") do |chart|
     chart.add_series :data => sheet["A2:D2"], :labels => sheet["A1:D1"]

Data over time

 wb.add_worksheet(:name=>'Charting Dates') do |sheet|
     # cell level style overides when adding cells
     sheet.add_row ['Date', 'Value'], :sz => 16
     sheet.add_row [ - (7*60*60*24), 3]
     sheet.add_row [ - (6*60*60*24), 7]
     sheet.add_row [ - (5*60*60*24), 18]
     sheet.add_row [ - (4*60*60*24), 1]
     sheet.add_chart(Axlsx::Bar3DChart) do |chart|
        chart.start_at "B7"
        chart.end_at "H27"
        chart.add_series(:data => sheet["B2:B5"], :labels => sheet["A2:A5"], :title => sheet["B1"])           

Generating A Line Chart

 wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Line Chart") do |sheet|
   sheet.add_row ["First", 1, 5, 7, 9]
   sheet.add_row ["Second", 5, 2, 14, 9]
   sheet.add_chart(Axlsx::Line3DChart, :title => "example 6: Line Chart", :rotX => 30, :rotY => 20) do |chart|
     chart.start_at 0, 2
     chart.end_at 10, 15
     chart.add_series :data => sheet["B1:E1"], :title => sheet["A1"]
     chart.add_series :data => sheet["B2:E2"], :title => sheet["A2"]         

Auto Filter

 wb.add_worksheet(:name => "Auto Filter") do |sheet|
   sheet.add_row ["Build Matrix"]
   sheet.add_row ["Build", "Duration", "Finished", "Rvm"]
   sheet.add_row ["19.1", "1 min 32 sec", "about 10 hours ago", "1.8.7"]
   sheet.add_row ["19.2", "1 min 28 sec", "about 10 hours ago", "1.9.2"]
   sheet.add_row ["19.3", "1 min 35 sec", "about 10 hours ago", "1.9.3"]
   sheet.auto_filter = "A2:D5"

Validate and Serialize

 p.validate.each { |e| puts e.message }


This gem is 100% documented with YARD, an exceptional documentation library. To see documentation for this, and all the gems installed on your system use:

  gem install yard
  yard server -g


This gem has 100% test coverage using test/unit. To execute tests for this gem, simply run rake in the gem directory.


  • January.6.12: 1.0.15 release

    • Bug fix add_style specified number formats must be explicity applied for libraOffice
    • performance improvements from ochko when creating cells with options.
    • Bug fix setting types=>[:n] when adding a row incorrectly determines the cell type to be string as the value is null during creation.
    • Release in preparation for password protection merge
  • December.14.11: 1.0.14 release

    • Added support for merging cells
    • Added support for auto filters
    • Improved auto width calculations
    • Improved charts
    • Updated examples to output to a single workbook with multiple sheets
    • Added access to app and core package objects so you can set the creator and other properties of the package
    • The beginning of password protected xlsx files - roadmapped for January release.
  • December.8.11: 1.0.13 release

    • Fixing .gemspec errors that caused gem to miss the lib directory. Sorry about that.
  • December.7.11: 1.0.12 release DO NOT USE THIS VERSION = THE GEM IS BROKEN

    • changed dependency from 'zip' gem to 'rubyzip' and added conditional code to force binary encoding to resolve issue with excel 2011
    • Patched bug in app.xml that would ignore user specified properties.
  • December.5.11: 1.0.11 release
    • Added [] methods to worksheet and workbook to provide name based access to cells.
    • Added support for functions as cell values
    • Updated color creation so that two character shorthand values can be used like 'FF' for 'FFFFFFFF' or 'D8' for 'FFD8D8D8'
    • Examples for all this fun stuff added to the readme
    • Clean up and support for 1.9.2 and travis integration
    • Added support for string based cell referencing to chart start_at and end_at. That means you can now use :start_at=>"A1" when using worksheet.add_chart, or chart.start_at ="A1" in addition to passing a cell or the x, y coordinates.

Please see the {} document for past release information.



Copyright and License

Axlsx © 2011 by Randy Morgan. Axlsx is licensed under the MIT license. Please see the {file:LICENSE} document for more information.

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