How can I convert a CSV file to a table with a repeating header row?

Tags: tablesCSVpublish databaseiText 7

I am generating a PDF file from CSV using iText. I need to format the file such that the header row (which occurs in the beginning of every page) should be in a different font and color. Just to be clear, I know how to set the font style/size/color. I'm having a tough time finding out how to do that for the header rows of my table.

Posted on StackOverflow on Nov 10, 2014 by harsha

Your requirement is explained in large detail in our tutorial video, more specifically in the UnitedStates example. In this example, we take a CSV file containing the different states of the US: united_states.csv

name;abbr;capital;most populous city;population;square miles;time zone 1;time zone 2;dst
ALABAMA;AL;Montgomery;Birmingham;4,708,708;52,423;CST (UTC-6);EST (UTC-5);YES
ALASKA;AK;Juneau;Anchorage;698,473;656,425;AKST (UTC-09) ;HST (UTC-10) ;YES
ARIZONA;AZ;Phoenix;Phoenix;6,595,778;114,006;MT (UTC-07); ;NO
ARKANSAS;AR;Little Rock;Little Rock;2,889,450;53,182;CST (UTC-6); ;YES
CALIFORNIA;CA;Sacramento;Los Angeles;36,961,664;163,707;PT (UTC-8); ;YES

And we parse these into a PDF with a repeating header: united_states.pdf

Here is the code:

public void createPdf(String data, String dest) throws IOException {
    PdfDocument pdfDoc = new PdfDocument(new PdfWriter(dest));
    Document doc = new Document(pdfDoc, new PageSize(PageSize.A4).rotate());
    PdfFont font = PdfFontFactory.createFont(FontConstants.HELVETICA);
    PdfFont bold = PdfFontFactory.createFont(FontConstants.HELVETICA_BOLD);
    Table table = new Table(new float[]{4, 1.5f, 3, 4, 3, 3, 3, 3, 1});
    BufferedReader br = new BufferedReader(new FileReader(data));
    String line = br.readLine();
    process(table, line, bold, true);
    while ((line = br.readLine()) != null) {
        process(table, line, font, false);
public void process(Table table, String line, PdfFont font, boolean isHeader) {
    StringTokenizer tokenizer = new StringTokenizer(line, ";");
    while (tokenizer.hasMoreTokens()) {
        if (isHeader) {
            table.addHeaderCell(new Cell().add(new Paragraph(tokenizer.nextToken()).setFont(font)));
        } else {
            table.addCell(new Cell().add(new Paragraph(tokenizer.nextToken()).setFont(font)));

Take a close look at the process() method: it accepts a font parameter so that we can define a bigger, bolder font for the header, and isHeader parameter to define the moment of usage of addHeaderCell() method.

Click this link if you want to see how to answer this question in iText 5.