Bug 146440 - UNO: Formula vs FormulaLocal: inconsistent cell formatting
Summary: UNO: Formula vs FormulaLocal: inconsistent cell formatting
Status: NEW
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: Calc (show other bugs)
(earliest affected) alpha0+ Master
Hardware: All All
: medium normal
Assignee: Not Assigned
Depends on:
Reported: 2021-12-27 19:41 UTC by Mike Kaganski
Modified: 2022-02-05 18:30 UTC (History)
2 users (show)

See Also:
Crash report or crash signature:
Regression By:


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Description Mike Kaganski 2021-12-27 19:41:18 UTC
In a new spreadsheet, execute these macros:

Sub FormulaVsFormulaLocal

' Case 1. Comparing date values
  oCell = ThisComponent.Sheets(0).getCellByPosition(0, 0)
  oCell.Formula = "2021-12-27"
  oCell = ThisComponent.Sheets(0).getCellByPosition(0, 1)
  oCell.FormulaLocal = "2021-12-27"

' Case 2. Comparing boolean values
  oCell = ThisComponent.Sheets(0).getCellByPosition(1, 0)
  oCell.Formula = "TRUE"
  oCell = ThisComponent.Sheets(0).getCellByPosition(1, 1)
  oCell.FormulaLocal = "ИСТИНА" ' Note use of *localized* (ru) name for "TRUE"

' Case 3. Comparing string values
  oCell = ThisComponent.Sheets(0).getCellByPosition(2, 0)
  oCell.Formula = "'1"
  oCell = ThisComponent.Sheets(0).getCellByPosition(2, 1)
  oCell.FormulaLocal = "'1"

End Sub

Given that the initial format of all the cells is "Standard", I observe the following result in Version: (x64) / LibreOffice Community
Build ID: 27d75539669ac387bb498e35313b970b7fe9c4f9
CPU threads: 12; OS: Windows 10.0 Build 19044; UI render: Skia/Raster; VCL: win
Locale: ru-RU (ru_RU); UI: en-US
Calc: CL

Case 1. Cell A1 is still formatted as Standard. It contains number 44557.
        Cell A2 is formatted as Date (YYYY-MM-DD). It contains date 2021-12-27.

Case 2. Cell B1 is still formatted as Standard. It contains number 1.
        Cell B2 is formatted as BOOLEAN. It contains value "ИСТИНА".
(Note that in other locales, the string in case 2 code should be modified accordingly.)

Case 3. Cell C1 is formatted as Text (@). It contains string "1" (no apostrophe).
        Cell C2 is formatted as Standard. It contains string "'1" (apostrophe).

I suppose all cases should behave consistently, and the only difference should be that Formula takes canonical representation, and FormulaLocal takes localized strings as user may enter... Especially confusing is that case 3 reverses which cell takes new number format.
Comment 1 Mike Kaganski 2021-12-27 21:18:23 UTC
FTR: cases 1 and 2 worked exactly the same in OOo 3.2.0; case 3 gave *both* C1 and C2 formatted as Standard, and containing strings "'1".
Comment 2 Mike Kaganski 2021-12-27 21:37:55 UTC
Case 4:

  oCell = ThisComponent.Sheets(0).getCellByPosition(3, 0)
  oCell.Formula = "'foo"
  oCell = ThisComponent.Sheets(0).getCellByPosition(3, 1)
  oCell.FormulaLocal = "'foo"

In this case, cell D1 contains text "foo" (no apostrophe), and D2 contains text "'foo" (apostrophe); both cells are formatted as Standard.
Comment 3 Eike Rathke 2022-02-03 17:23:08 UTC
It's complicated..

Formula = ... goes via ScCellObj::setFormula() (an implementation of css::table::XCell::setFormula()) ScDocFunc::SetCellText() the bEnglish=true case that for the result of ScStringUtil::parseInputString() distinguishes between ScInputStringType::Formula, ScInputStringType::Number and ScInputStringType::Text and does not apply any number format for the ScInputStringType::Number case, apparently on purpose, but does force-apply the Text format for ScInputStringType::Text via ScDocFunc::SetStringCell() ScDocument::SetString() ... ScColumn::ParseString() for content that could be numeric (the leading ' apostrophe was removed in ScStringUtil::parseInputString()).

FormulaLocal = ... goes via ScCellObj::SetOnePropertyValue() SC_WID_UNO_FORMLOC ScCellObj::SetString_Impl() ScDocFunc::SetCellText() the bEnglish=false case ScDocFunc::SetNormalString() ScDocument::SetString() ... ScColumn::ParseString() that does apply a number format if aParam.mbDetectNumberFormat=true and the detected format is not compatible with the previous format or none was set.

Questions remains, what would actually be expected for all cases.
Comment 4 Mike Kaganski 2022-02-04 05:46:51 UTC
(In reply to Eike Rathke from comment #3)
> Questions remains, what would actually be expected for all cases.

Personally I would be OK with any consistent behavior, with slight preference of "as if user entered that in Input line" behavior (i.e. applying format where it's needed to show recognized number in expected fashion).
But I suppose we should also consider Excel VBA behavior in this case. Vladimir, could you please provide your insight how Excel behaves in this case? Thanks.
Comment 5 Vladimir Sokolinskiy 2022-02-05 18:30:36 UTC
Hello colleagues!
Excel behavior.

Case 1. The cell value (Value2 property) is a number (corresponding to a date), the "General" NumberFormat is changed to "YYYY-MM-DD".

Case 2. The cell value is of boolean type (not available in Calc). The NumberFormat does not change.

Case 3, 4. The leading apostrophe is removed (always, even if the cell NumberFormat is "@"). The cell's Range.PrefixCharacter property is set to apostrophe.   

I hope I didn't confuse anything. :).