ACC2000: "The Microsoft Jet Database Engine Cannot Open the File 'Path to File'..." Error When You Open a Linked Excel File

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Article ID: 304549 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q304549
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Moderate: Requires basic macro, coding, and interoperability skills.

This article applies only to a Microsoft Access database (.mdb).

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In a Microsoft Access database, when you try to open a second instance of a linked Excel spreadsheet, you receive the following error message:
The Microsoft Jet database engine cannot open the file 'path to file'. It is already opened exclusively by another user, or you need permission to view its data.


When the linked Excel spreadsheet is first opened, Microsoft Jet locks the source file for the linked Excel spreadsheet.


To work around this behavior, import the Excel spreadsheet into Access.

For more information about how to import an Excel spreadsheet, click Microsoft Access Help on the Help menu, type import or link data from a spreadsheet in the Office Assistant or the Answer Wizard, and then click Search to view the topic.


This behavior is by design.

More information

Steps to Reproduce the Behavior

  1. Start Excel 2000, and then create a new workbook.
  2. Save the file as Test1.
  3. Open the sample database Northwind.mdb.
  4. On the File menu, point to Get External Data, and then click Link Tables. Link to the Test1 file.
  5. Open the linked file in Access 2000.
  6. On a second computer, try to open another instance of the linked Test1 file.
Note that you receive the error message that is mentioned in the "Symptoms" section of this article.


Article ID: 304549 - Last Review: October 25, 2013 - Revision: 3.0
Applies to
  • Microsoft Access 2000 Standard Edition
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