This functionality is only relevant when you merge into a MultiTerm termbase.
Although the example below uses a multiline format, it's recommended you only use entry numbers with spreadsheets int the the full support format, to ensure proper Synonym Handling.
This is not to annoy you, but to avoid conflicts between entry number and multiline merging. Look at the second example below: The multiline format defines the two lines with ball to be the same entry, while the entry number field defines them as being different. The converter will convert something, but it may not be what you want.
MultiTerm automatically assigns an entry number to each entry, or concept. When you convert from a termbase, this number can be saved in the target as a field called entry number.
It can come handy, though, if you merge different versions of the same glossary, and have new homonyms. As in MultiTerm, you can choose to merge not on a language, but on the unique entry number, which defines the terms that belong together. As an example, take the two spreadsheets below. The first is the basic termbase, the second a newer edit, where someone has added a new word. You now want to integrate the new version with the old one.
Without an id, you have to merge by language, and the termbase will neither distinguish the different meaning for ball, nor reflect that part means the same as ball.
This can be made easier by keeping the entry number when converting from a termbase. If you choose to merge on the entry number field, you will get the correct merge:
Note: the field must be called entry number for this to work, and it must be an entry field (i.e. must appear in a spreadsheet before the first language.
If you have just one excel file with entry numbers, and you want to make sure that there are no duplicate entry numbers are correct when converting to sdltb, use merge mode. You can "merge" just one file. This may be useful when you added extra lines to the spreadsheet with an entry number that is already used somewhere else in the file.
When merging to a termbase, using the entry number field, it is not represented as a field in the resulting termbase, instead you will find it as the entry number property in MultiTerm. If you want to keep it as an editable text field, rename the column in the spreadsheet to something else than entry number.
You can in principle merge multiple glossaries on the entry number, even if one of them has no entry number fields. In that case unique numbers are assigned during import. There is no guarantee, though, that entry numbers are preserved: if there are any clashes between the original and automatic numbers, values can change in unpredictable ways.
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