The following points illustrate common issues users find when attempting to upload classification files:

Incorrect file format or extension

Classifications require a specific file type and format to upload successfully. If saved improperly, it throws an error and doesn't process any rows. The error returned is frequently "First column is required to be the key", but can be any number of errors. Be sure to check the following:

  • Uploading a spreadsheet (.xlsx) instead of a .tab or .txt file: The classification importer does not know how to handle .xls or .xlsx files. When in the Save As dialogue in Excel, set the Save as type toText (Tab delimited) (*.txt) instead of Excel Workbook (*.xlsx).

    Note: Do not try to change the filename extension when saving the file without changing the Save as type. Doing so can make the attempted filename extension part of the filename. For example, trying to enter fileupload.txt into the filename field while the Save as type is still Excel Workbook creates an Excel Workbook named fileupload.txt.xlsx.

  • Changing the filename extension after saving it as a workbook: Attempting to change any .xlsx extension to .tab or .txt generates an invalid workbook. Only use Excel's Save As function or edit classifications in a text editor such as Notepad++.
  • Using uppercase extensions: Uppercase extensions (such as fileupload.TXT) don't work. Rename the file to a lowercase extension (fileupload.txt).
  • Incorrect file encoding on Apple computers: If using Mac OS, save the file as Windows Formatted Text instead of Text Tab-delimited. Mac computers process text files differently than Windows, which causes the classification importer to throw an error.
  • Mismatched character encoding: Be sure that the encoding of the saved classification upload matches the original encoding when the template was downloaded. If you upload a UTF-16 file when it was originally encoded in UTF-8, uploads produce unexpected results. Adobe recommends uploading files using UTF-8 without byte order marks.

Invalid file contents

If your upload file is correctly formatted, the uploader attempts to import as many valid rows as possible. Some common issues with classification data are as follows:

  • Rows that have already been classified: When attempting to upload rows that have already been classified with the same value, the importer returns rows that had no effect. This outcome is expected, as classifications don't reclassify a key value with the same classification. It is more of a notification than an error. It is not anything to worry about if you do not alter all rows within an export file. Adobe recommends only uploading changed rows.
  • Missing file header: A classification file without a header doesn't process successfully.
  • Header does not match the variable being uploaded: If you download a classification template for the campaign variable and attempt to upload it to a pageName classification, it fails. Only use export files for the specific variables they were exported from.
  • A key or classification value contains the value 0: Classifications cannot differentiate the value 0 from a blank cell, so it cannot classify this value. See Using '0' in classifications.
  • The classification file contains commas or special characters: See Classify values using commas.
  • Extra tabs are in the uploaded file: Sometimes when editing classification files, an extra tab can be accidentally slipped in. Each row requires an identical number of tabs to process correctly. To check for extra tabs within the file, do the following:
    1. Open the import file in Notepad. Select all text by pressing [Ctrl+A].
    2. Provided each column contains classification data; make sure that there are no extra spaces highlighted after the classification text:
             This text is what an ideal classification row looks like when highlighted.
             The empty space after the end of this row would throw an error.                  
    3. Remove any extra tabs at the end of the file and attempt to upload the file again.
  • Duplicate key values exist in the file: Each key value can only have one classification per column. Take the following invalid classification file:
  •  Key  Friendly Name  No of weeks Live
     July Campaign  Internal Promotion  3
     July Campaign  External Ad  4
     August Campaign  Affiliate Promotion  2

The July Campaign value can only have one friendly name- this classification file would throw an error upon upload.

  • Subclassifications exist and are incorrectly configured: If subclassifications exist, check the following:
    • All subclassification values have a parent classification value
    • No two subclassifications reference the same parent classification value

If you still have issues uploading a classification file, have one of your organization's supported users contact Customer Care.

Troubleshooting FTP imports

The following are common causes behind FTP classifications not processing uploaded files:

  • Missing .fin file: Create a blank text document on your desktop and rename the filename extension from .txt to .fin. The name of this .fin file must match the name of the classification file in question. For example, if your FTP filename is, name your .fin file fileupload.fin. Once the .fin file is uploaded both files disappear.
  • Uploading .fin file before classification file: Sometimes a .fin is created before the classifications file has finished being uploaded to the FTP. Processing can fail when files are uploaded out of order. Remove both files, add the classification file first, then the .fin file after the classification file is fully uploaded.
  • File size is excessively large: Adobe recommends keeping classification file sizes as small as possible to ensure expeditious processing.
  • Existing files already processing: If multiple files are uploaded for the same variable and report suite, the old file stops processing in favor of the new one. If uploading classifications using multiple files, wait for confirmation that existing files have finished processing before uploading new ones.
  • Uploaded files not placed in root directory: Files uploaded to Adobe's FTP must be placed in the root directory. If classification import files are placed in subfolders, they cannot be picked up and processed. 

Additional Resources