This is a problem that we have recently encountered in our work and it took us a good while to find the solution. Now we have found it though it is quite a simple fix and so I wanted to share it with you.

The problem arose when we downloaded an amount of data from our CRM and wanted to save it as a CSV file to use elsewhere. We thought we saved it as a CSV file, but when we went back to open it (we have also heard of circumstances where it does not open at all) we had the following boxes pop up.


When we clicked ‘Yes’ this box then pops up:


When ‘OK’ is clicked the file then opens up in a normal excel format, not the CSV that we were hoping for.

So why does this happen and how do we stop it?

  1. The reason that Excel saves a file automatically as a SLYK file instead of a CSV file is because box A1 in the file has the title ‘ID’.  that’s all the problem is! So the problem occurs because the word ID also have a different meaning in some other types of files.3-1
  2. There are two ways to change this so you can save it as a CSV file. The first, if you are able to open the excel document is to simply change the name of the ID box, for example maybe to ‘number’. This should fix the problem and prevent it from happening again.4-1
  3. Once you have changed the wording in cell A1 go to ‘Save As’ and you will have the option to save it as a CSV file and you should then find it will work.5-1
  4. If however you cannot open the excel document at all then you need to find a workaround. Here are the steps that I used:
  5. Locate your document in your folders and right click on it, select ‘Open With > Notepad’.
  6. Locate the word ‘ID’ (which should be right at the top of the document) and change this to anything else; in our case we have used ‘Number’.
  7. Once you have changed this, just use the CTRL + S button to automatically save the change. You can then open your file as a CSV. Just by clicking on it in the usual way.8-1
  8. If your excel file is still not a CSV file then go back to point number 2 and follow that one and number 3.

We hope this has helped you solve your problem. If it has, or if you found a better solution, please feel free to comment below and let us know.