Mail::Addressbook::Convert::Csv - convert to and from CSV formatted addressbooks


use strict;

use Mail::Addressbook::Convert::Csv;

my $csv = new Mail::Addressbook::ConvertCsv();

my $CsvInFile ="csvSample.txt"; # name of the file containing the csv data

# Convert Csv to Standard Intermediate format

# see documentation for details on format.

my $raIntermediate = $csv->scan(\$CsvInFile);

# This will also work

#my @CsvInArray = @arrayContainingTheCsvData;

#my $raIntermediate = $csv->scan(\@CsvInArray);

# Convert back to Csv

my $raCsvOut = $csv->output($raIntermediate); # a reference to an array containing a csv file.

print join "", @$raIntermediate;

print "\n\n\n\n";

print join "", @$raCsvOut;


Perl, version 5.001 or higher



This module is meant to be used as part of the Mail::Addressbook::Convert distribution.

It can convert a Csv addressbook to a Standard Intermediate format(STF) and a STF to Csv As part of the larger distribution, it will allow conversion between Csv and many other formats.

To use to convert between Csv and Eudora as an example, you would do the following

use Mail::Addressbook::Convert::Csv;

use Mail::Addressbook::Convert::Eudora;

my $Csv = new Mail::Addressbook::Convert::Csv();

my $Eudora = new Mail::Addressbook::Convert::Eudora();

my $csvInFile ="csvSample.txt"; # name of the file containing the Csv data

my $raIntermediate = $Csv->scan(\$csvInFile);

my $raEudora = $Eudora->output($raIntermediate); # reference to an array containing a Eudora addressbook


Standard Intermediate Format(STF) :

                        The addressbook format that is used as an intermediate
                        between conversions.  It is rfc822 compliant and can
                        be used directly as a Eudora addressbook.  Do not use
                        a Eudora addressbook as an STF. Some versions of 
                        Eudora use a format, that while RFC822 compliant, will
                        not work as an STF. Run the Eudora addressbook
                        through $Eudora->scan()

Csv addressbook:

        The comma separated columns are described below. Only the first one is mandatory. 
        They may be enclosed in quotes. 
        E-mail address. 
        Name 1 Usually first name or full name. 
        Name 2 Usually last name or leave blank 
        Alias  A unique alias, if it is not unique, it will be made unique. 
                If it is left blank, a unique alias will be produced from 
                the name portion of the e-mail address (the part to the left of the "@" sign). 
                In the following columns, as many as needed, put the names of any mailing lists 
                (address list, distribution lists, etc.) that you want this address to be included in.
        Two Examples:
        Using only column 1
        Using Columns 1 and 4,,jhd

A full Example ------------------------------------------------,Joe,Davidson1,jhd,comment1,lista,Joe,Davidson2,,,lista,listb,Joe,Davidson3,,comment3,Joe,Davidson4,,comment4,listb,listc,King Tut

------------------------------------------------------ =head1 METHODS


no arguments needed.


Input : a reference to an array containing a csv file or a reference to a scalar containing the file name with the csv data. Returns: a reference to a STF ( see above).


Input: a reference to a STF ( see above). Returns : a reference to an array containing a csv file.


This only converts email address, aliases, and mailing lists. Phone numbers, postal addresses and other such data are not converted.



This code is derived from the code used on . The site has been up since 1996 ( but ldif was only included on 1997, when Netscape 3 started using it.) The site gets about 8000 unique visitors a month, many of whom make addressbook conversions. The code has been well tested.





Original Version 2001-Sept-09


Copyright (c) 2001 Joe Davidson. All rights reserved. This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the Perl Artistic License (see or the GPL copyleft license (


Mail::Addressbook::Convert was written by Joe Davidson <> in 2001.