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Can I import an Excel spreadsheet into another spreadsheet (two separate files) by linking in certain cells from one to show in other cells in a different file?

I'm not sure if I can do this or where I'd go if it possible to make it work. I have no programming background.

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migrated from Aug 4 '11 at 9:43

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

Are you thinking that you want a spreadsheet which is updated when either of the separate files is changed, or is this a one-time thing? You can certainly just copy and paste row/column/cell ranges between worksheets to "import" one into another. – Brian Gordon Aug 3 '11 at 20:39


  • Open both workbooks
  • Activate the workbook you want automatically updated
  • Select a cell you want to link
  • Type =
  • Activate the other workbook
  • Select the cell you want to link and hit "enter"
  • You will return to the first workbook and the selected cell will contain the reference e.g. =[FirstFile.xls]Sheet1!$A$11
  • Repeat for each cell you want to link
  • If you want to, you could include references in formulae, say if you wanted half the value, you would do as above then add /2 to get =[FirstFile.xls]Sheet1!$A$11/2 or maybe multiply the vales of two cells e.g.

    =[FirstFile.xls]Sheet1!$A$11* =[FirstFile.xls]Sheet1!$B$42
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doesn't this require both sheets to be open? I mean if the formulae is supposed to evaluate properly... – deostroll Aug 4 '11 at 10:16
no, it doesn't necessary the two files opened, but if you change the path or the name of mentioned FirstFile.xls the dependent workbook will warn about it when opened – kokbira Aug 4 '11 at 11:43

Copy the cell in your 'source' spreadsheet, then do a 'Paste Special' into your target spreadsheet. This will copy the value and leave a link pointing to the original spreadsheet, so changes in the source will be reflected in the target.

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use this if you do not want a file to be dependent of another – kokbira Aug 4 '11 at 11:44

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