Link references with another workbook

How to link with external references

In this article, we will learn how we can link one workbook to another workbook in Microsoft Excel. We will use the option of external reference. An external reference in Excel is a reference to a cell or range of cells in another workbook.

Let’s take an example and understand:-

We have 3 workbooks in which we have sales-wise quarterly details for 3 different regions. We have one workbook in which we need to calculate total for all the zones to return the value for overall company.

South Data:-

image 1


North Data:-

image 2


East Data:-

image 3


Follow below given steps:-

  • Open all the workbooks
  • In the company workbook, select the cell B5 and type the ‘equal to’ sign =
  • In the North workbook, select cell B5, then + sign; in South workbook, select  the cell B5 and then +sign, and in East workbook, do the same

image 4


  • Press Enter
  • Copy & Paste the formula in the range

image 5



  • Close all workbooks and then change the number in a workbook of a division
  • Close all workbooks again
  • Now open the company workbook
  • A pop up will appear.To update all the links, click Enable Content
  • If you do not want to update the links, click on the X (close)

image 6

Note: if you see another alert, click Update or Don't Update.

In this way, we can link the workbook with each other in Microsoft Excel.


image 48

If you liked our blogs, share it with your friends on Facebook. And also you can follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
We would love to hear from you, do let us know how we can improve, complement or innovate our work and make it better for you. Write us at

Users are saying about us...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Terms and Conditions of use

The applications/code on this site are distributed as is and without warranties or liability. In no event shall the owner of the copyrights, or the authors of the applications/code be liable for any loss of profit, any problems or any damage resulting from the use or evaluation of the applications/code.

Visit Us On TwitterVisit Us On FacebookVisit Us On Youtube