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Data loading is the process of copying and loading data or data sets from a source file, folder or application to a database or similar application. It is usually implemented by copying digital data from a source and pasting or loading the data to a data storage or processing utility.
Data loading is used in database-based extraction and loading techniques. Typically, such data is loaded into the destination application as a different format than the original source location.
For example, when data is copied from a word processing file to a database application, the data format is changed from .doc or .txt to a .CSV or DAT format. Usually, this process is performed through or the last phase of the Extract, Transform and Load (ETL) process. The data is extracted from an external source and transformed into the destination application's supported format, where the data is further loaded.