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Filling cells from above

The Fill empty cells from above function allows you to copy the value from the nearest non-empty cell above and fill the following empty ones with this value.

Information noteNote: This function is not compatible with Spark Jobs, and HDFS or S3 exports.

When there is a series of empty cells, they all fill with the same value that was originally picked from above.

Let's say for example that you have received an Excel file containing a list of the American States, along with their state code, and the region they belong to. Instead of having the region names repeated for several rows, the person who sent this input file used merged cells to regroup them.

Excel file with merged cells.

When you open this file in Talend Data Preparation, the merged cells will result in one correct row, followed by several empty cells, as shown in the quality bar for the Region column.

Excel file opened in Talend Data Preparation.

Instead, you want the information about the region to be repeated, so that each row can be self-contained.

You will use the Fill empty cells from above to reuse each region name in the empty cells located directly under them.


  1. Click the header of the Region column to select its content.
  2. In the functions panel, type Fill empty cells from above.
  3. Click the eye icon if you want to preview the effects of the function, or simply click the function to apply it.
    Effects of the function on the dataset.


All the empty cells have been filled with the appropriate value, based on the last non-empty one, and all the US States now have their corresponding region.

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