Python CSV error: line contains NULL byte

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I"m working with some CSV files, with the following code:

reader = csv.reader(open(filepath, "rU"))
try:
    for row in reader:
        print "Row read successfully!", row
except csv.Error, e:
    sys.exit("file %s, line %d: %s" % (filename, reader.line_num, e))

And one file is throwing this error:

file my.csv, line 1: line contains NULL byte

What can I do? Google seems to suggest that it may be an Excel file that"s been saved as a .csv improperly. Is there any way I can get round this problem in Python?

== UPDATE ==

Following @JohnMachin"s comment below, I tried adding these lines to my script:

print repr(open(filepath, "rb").read(200)) # dump 1st 200 bytes of file
data = open(filepath, "rb").read()
print data.find("x00")
print data.count("x00")

And this is the output I got:

"xd0xcfx11xe0xa1xb1x1axe1x00x00x00x00x00x00x00x00 .... <snip>
8
13834

So the file does indeed contain NUL bytes.

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We hope this article has helped you to resolve the problem. Apart from Python CSV error: line contains NULL byte, check other code Python module-related topics.

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Oliver Danburry

Boston | 2023-01-27

I was preparing for my coding interview, thanks for clarifying this - Python CSV error: line contains NULL byte in Python is not the simplest one. Checked yesterday, it works!

Chen Wu

Berlin | 2023-01-27

Simply put and clear. Thank you for sharing. Python CSV error: line contains NULL byte and other issues with code Python module was always my weak point 😁. Will use it in my bachelor thesis

Ken Porretti

Massachussetts | 2023-01-27

Thanks for explaining! I was stuck with Python CSV error: line contains NULL byte for some hours, finally got it done 🤗. Will get back tomorrow with feedback

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