Bill Fellows shows us how to read from an Excel file on a machine without Microsoft Office installed:
A common problem working with Excel data is Excel itself. Working with it programatically requires an installation of Office, and the resulting license cost, and once everything is set, you’re still working with COM objects which present its own set of challenges. If only there was a better way.
Enter, the better way – EPPlus. This is an open source library that wraps the OpenXml library which allows you to simply reference a DLL. No more installation hassles, no more licensing (LGPL) expense, just a simple reference you can package with your solutions.
Let’s look at an example.
Read on for the example. A couple alternatives I like are readxl and XLConnect in R.