Flat files are text files that contain data stored using the ASCII character set. A program processes the data for use in a software application. Flat files can be used to import and export data from one application to another in situations where it is not possible to use any other storage medium for the transmission of the data. Flat files are not relational database files. These files are structured data sets containing rows of data. Each row consists of one record per line containing many fields that are classified as elements. Flat files are used to process data sequentially.