Specifications and Requirements for
Processing Departmental Mail Lists
Computer systems: IBM/PC and compatibles, and Macintosh computers.
Disks: Mac disks and IBM 3.5 inch, high density: 1.4 (Mac) or 1.44 (IBM), zip disks or CD's.
Electronic network transmission: e-mail an attachment to email@example.com
Our mail list management software accepts the following file formats. Most can be created by database software-Excel, Microsoft Access, or Wordperfect for example.
- Comma Delimited (sometimes referred to as "delineated or ASCII Text File")
- Disk Label Image Text File
- Standard Fixed Length Fields, Fixed Length Records
- Fixed Length Fields, CR/LF Delimited Records
EACH RECORD MUST HAVE THE SAME NUMBER OF FIELDS, REGARDLESS WHETHER OR NOT ANY INFORMATION EXISTS IN ALL FIELDS.
Each field is separated by a comma or semi colon, etc., or may optionally be surrounded by quotation marks. Each record is separated by a carriage return, line feed sequence.
John, Archer, 22 N Monroe St, Chicago, IL, 60604
"Amy","Wilson","33 E Adams","Libertyville","IL","60048"
Disk Label Image Text File:
This file type appears on a disk as a one-up label image with each line of data being separated by a carriage return/line feed sequence. Each label must have the same number of lines.
Line 1 - John Archer
Line 2 - Suite 125
Line 3 - 22 N Monroe
Line 4 - Chicago IL 60604
Line 5 - 'blank line'
Line 1 - Amy Wilson
Line 2 - 'blank line'
Line 3 - 33 E Adams
Line 4 - Libertyville IL 60048
Line 5 - 'blank line'
Each record consists of five lines even though the first example has only four lines of information and the second example has only three lines of information.
Standard Fixed Length Fields, Fixed Length Records:
A disk file where each field is the same length and each record is the same length.
Example: John Archer 22 N Monroe St Chicago IL 60604
Field 1 is 10 units | Field 2 is 10 units long | Field 3 is 20 units long | Field 4 is 15 units long | Field 5 is 2 units long | Field 6 is 5 units long
Fixed Length Fields, CR/LF Delimited Records:
Similar to Standard except each record maybe variable in length and the record is terminated with carriage return/line feed
Example: See "Standard Fixed Length Fields, Fixed Length Records" above.
This is a common type of disk file created by Borland dbase II through IV programs and several others. It is essentially a fixed length file with a special header record.
NO ONE LINE OF INFORMATION SHOULD EXCEED MORE THAN 40 CHARACTERS. Use standard USPS abbreviations if necessary to maintain a 40-character line or field (these abbreviations are available upon request). The last line or field of each record should be City, State, and ZIP (do not abbreviate the street names or city).
Purchased Off-Campus Mail Lists
If your department purchases mailing lists from sources outside the University, please request the vendor to send electronic file NOT paper lists or labels. The new classification reform regulations require electronic media to verify 5-digit ZIP codes. Call 2-7330 for further information.