CBASE-1 stands for Contact Basic Synchronization format version 1.

Allentium Software invented this format in 1988.


The first 2 lines are ignored during the Import process.

They are meant to be:

Line 1 is an export note, or a name for the contacts within the file.

Line 2 is the 7 field format layout to remind you in the text editor.

Each record in the file goes from line 3 and goes down. Blank lines are skipped.

Each line in the text file must end with either a CR, or CR + LF pair, or LF.

Any line that only contains "end" (without the quotes) at the beginning of the line will stop the importing at that place in the file.

There are only 7 different fields allowed.

The 7 fields are:

Name,Address,Home Phone,Mobile Phone,Work Phone,Email,Notes

Each field may not contain any comma characters, nor any byte less than ASCII 32, which means, there are no white space characters like vertical tab.

Space characters are retained as is. For example, if you insert 2 spaces in a row, they are imported that way and also exported that way.

The Name field can contain many names, but it's a good idea to only put people's names into this field.

Here are some examples of the Name field:

John Smith

Smith - John

John Smith and Mary

Smith - John and Mary

John Smith - wife=Mary son=David

The Address field is normally the entire postal mailing address and remember that commas must be substituted for dashes or any other symbol. You can also put anything you want into this field after the address. For example: Birth dates, personal features, driving directions, alternate email address, facebook name, etc.

Here are some examples of an Address:

123 Anywhere St-City-ON-K2P1J2

123 Anywhere St-City-ON-K2P1J2-Coord=N 45° 23' 11'' W 75° 43' 57''45.3865 / -75.7327

123 Anywhere St-City-ON-K2P1J2-Drk brwn hair+blue eyes-Birthday=1977-11-09

123 Anywhere St-City-ON-K2P1J2-Drive East on Hwy 402-Left on Valley Ridge-Right on 47 St-5th house on left

123 Anywhere St-City-ON-K2P1J2-work Ext 613;twitter=johnsmith812

123 Anywhere St-City-ON-K2P1J2-facebook=jsmithcoolio20;skype=johns1234

The first 3 phone number fields must only be actual phone numbers or blank. This makes for easy importing and exporting. You may decide to put dashes and parenthesis characters around the numbers to show formatting, or not. This allows auto-dialers to work with normal telephone characters. Specify extensions in the address field.

Here are some examples of a Home Phone, Mobile Phone, or Work Phone:




Email address should be the primary single valid email address.

Here are some examples of Email:

The last field must not end with a comma nor have any comma within the field. It is usually loose text notes, or an alternate phone number.

Here are some examples of using the last field as Notes:

Spouse is Mary and her cell phone is (604)123-1234

John has a really good sense of humour :)

Here are some examples of using the last field as an Other Phone:



Putting It All Together

Here's an example of a CBASE-1 file, called contacts.txt, that has 1 contact in it:

contacts.txt CBASE-1 file

Name,Address,Home Phone,Mobile Phone,Work Phone,Email,Notes

John Smith,123 Anywhere St-City-ON-K2P1J2,(604)123-1234,(508)789-7890,(604)321-3210,,John has a really good sense of humour :)

Each field can be 0 to 500 characters of A to Z a to z 0 to 9 !@#$%^&*()-_=+`~[{]}\|;:'"<.>/?

but never a comma within the field itself, not even "escaped" nor enclosed with any other character. Commas are ONLY used as field delimiters and so there must always be exactly 6 commas on each line.

The entire line may never be more than 7 * 500 + 6 commas = 3,506 bytes

plus the CR LF pair at the end = 3,508 bytes absolute maximum for each line.

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