Just helped a client resolve a situation and thought it would make a good Blog article. This client had links to external references that were not resolving and Excel would immediately crash and close whenever they tried to open the spreadsheet in question. Needless to say they were freaking out. Here’s what I did to resolve it.
1. If Excel is still open, click on Task Manager and close the application.
2. Restart Excel and go to a new spreadsheet.
3. Open Excel options
4. Click on Trust Center Settings
5. Click on External Content (usually on the left pane)
6. Click the Prompt User about Data Connections and Prompt user on automatic updates buttons
7. Open the spreadsheet that is crashing and when it asks if you want to refresh data Connections, select NO
8. Next click on Data – then Edit Links
9. Remove all the links
10. Save the file and reopen it. At this point you can go back and change the options to their original format.
This was a tricky one and the client said they would never have figured it out. There are just too many ways to do things in applications. That’s good news and bad news sometimes.