Geographic Information Systems Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for cartographers, geographers and GIS professionals. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I want to create a data dictionary of the tables of our primary layers. So I want a way to export the table structure to Excel. I don't need the actual data, I just want to know what columns are in each table and the data types for each column.

Our layers are in MapInfo, and I also have access to QGIS.

I can use the MapInfo Table Manager to export to a .met file, but when I copen that with Excel, the information is imported into one column - then requiring manual processing.

share|improve this question
How did you want it structured? Each row is layer and columns are the fields? – Nathan W Aug 5 '13 at 2:41
Are these just normal tab files or are they in sql server? – Nathan W Aug 5 '13 at 2:42
I want the results for each layer to be in it's own worksheet (because there is other information that I want to collect and collate about the data). And they are normal .tab files - no sql servers involved. – Johanna Aug 5 '13 at 2:46
up vote 1 down vote accepted

Simply export it to MIF file type (MapInfo's human-readable file interchange format). This creates a *.mif and a *.mid file. The .mif is what you need: after the header there's a section that lists the data COLUMNS by name with accompanying data type.

share|improve this answer
Thank you mtn.biker, that will work for me. There's still a lot of manual cutting and pasting to be done but it will do the job that I have now. – Johanna Aug 6 '13 at 22:54
Don't forget to accept my answer if it works for you - you can vote it up, too, if you wish. – mtn.biker Aug 8 '13 at 11:08

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.