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Whenever I try to add a layer from a csv file, I run into a weird problem. The layer is not showing up on the map and the icon that shows up next to the legend entry is different than what normally shows up- see the image attached (sublap map test vehicle 7 - 10)

Screenshot of my layer legend

5

This is because you are adding the CSV file as table from Add Vector Layer. You need to use Delimited Text to add CSV point data as you can see below:

enter image description here

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Alternatively to the Delimited Text importer, you can wrap a vrt file around your CSV to tell QGIS where to find the geometry columns, and define the geometry type and CRS.

See How to convert CSV file in VRT and http://www.gdal.org/drv_csv.html for details on the vrt.

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