Workbook links in Excel for the web

When you want to get data from a cell in another workbook, consider a workbook link. A workbook link serves as a pointer that lets you refer to cell content, whether just to see it in a new location or to use it in a formula. Workbook links are quicker and easier to set up than typical data connections, but they only work between workbooks - no other data sources are supported.

Important: 

  • Both workbooks must be saved in an online location you can reach with your Microsoft 365 account.

  • Workbook links are considered potentially unsafe and must be enabled when you open a formula workbook. When you open a formula workbook, click Enable Content in the Message Bar to allow the workbook links to function. If you don't, Excel keeps the most recent values and disables refreshing the links with values from the data workbook.

Create a workbook link 

  1. Open both workbooks in a browser window.

  2. In the workbook that has data you want to use (the data workbook, also called the source workbook), right-click the cell you want to link to, and then click Copy.

  3. In the workbook where you want the link (the formula workbook, also called the destination workbook), right-click the cell where you want the link, and then click Paste Link. You can also click the cell where you want the link, then click Home > Clipboard > Paste > Paste Link.

    Paste Link on the context menu for a cell

Manage links in a workbook

Use the Manage Links pane to refresh links, turn automatic refresh on or off, open data workbooks, and break links. When you first open a workbook that contains links, the Message Bar displays a Manage Workbook Links command you can click to open the Workbook Links pane, and you can also open it at any time using the ribbon.

  1. Click Data > Connections > Workbook Links to open the Workbook Links pane.

    The Workbook Links command on the ribbon

  2. In the Workbook Links pane, you can:

    Refresh all links once:

    • Click the Refresh All command at the top-right.

    Manage Links pane in Excel for the web, with the Refresh All command circled.

    Refresh only the links from one data workbook:

    • Select the data workbook with links you want to refresh, and then click the Refresh command that appears.

    Refresh command for a workbook in the Manage Links pane

    Refresh all links automatically:

    • Click the More Options button at the top-right, then select Refresh automatically.

    The 'More Options' menu with the 'Refresh automatically' command circled.

    Break all links in the workbook:

    • Click the More Options button at the top-right, then click Break all links.

    'Break all links' command in the Manage Links pane.

    Break the links from one source:

    • Click the More Options button next to the data workbook with links you want to break, then click Break links.

    'Break links' command in the Manage Links pane.

    Find the next cell that has a link to a specific data workbook:

    • Click the More Options button next to the data workbook with links you want to find, then click Find next link.

    'Find next link' command in the Manage Links pane.

See Also

How to correct a #CONNECT! error

Need more help?

Expand your Office skills
Explore training
Get new features first
Join Office Insiders

Was this information helpful?

Thank you for your feedback!

Thank you for your feedback! It sounds like it might be helpful to connect you to one of our Office support agents.

×