PHPExcel features

Topics: Developer Forum
Nov 24, 2012 at 9:47 PM
Edited Nov 24, 2012 at 9:49 PM


I have been looking thru the PHPExcel user guide and I am trying to figure out what it can and cannot do.

Specifically I see it can create Excel files of type .xlsx . What I am wondering is their some sort of interface that loads where it looks like Excel? Or is the main purpose of PHPExcel to create .xlsx files so that these can be loaded into Excel?

What I want to do is dynamically create xlsx files using PHPExcel and then open these using ZOHO spreadsheet. I figured I need ZOHO spreadsheet because PHPExcel cannot create the interface as nicely as ZOHO or MS Excel itself?

Please let me know.




Nov 24, 2012 at 11:48 PM

The main purpose of PHPExcel is to provide a library that allows reading, writing and manipulation of Spreadsheet files in a number of different formats.

Different people have different reasons for using it, whether to read spreadsheet data and load it into a database, or to take form or database data and write it to a spreadsheet format so that it can subsequently be accessed using Excel, Open/Libre Office, Gnumeric or other spreadsheet programs

PHPExcel provides functionality for manipulating spreadsheet data from within PHP scripts, but it is not a GUI tool... it doesn't provide a front-end interface: PHP is a server-side language, not a client side language. I have written a javascript GUI tool as an experiment, using Ajax to interact with server-side PHPExcel, just to prove it could be done; but it was highly inefficient (even on localhost) and certainly not usable over an internet connection (though it could probably done using websockets or similar, or a GTK application).

I'm not familiar with ZOHO spreadsheet, but if it can read Excel spreadsheets then it should be able to read the spreadsheet files that are written by PHPExcel.

Nov 25, 2012 at 1:39 AM

Hi Mark,

Thanks for the very detailed explanation!  I was thinking a good workflow for my project would be create a spreadsheet dynamically using PHPExcel

then open (point ZOHO via a post to the document url ) it in ZOHO spreadsheets and then save it back to my site.  See this for the gist of what I am doing:

Thanks again,