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Where are my linked tables in Power Pivot?

Linked tables in Power Pivot and the Excel Data Model have been replaced with refreshable tables. Previously, adding data to the Data Model would create a linked table. Now Excel will create a refreshable table in the Data Model instead. Any existing linked tables will be automatically converted to refreshable tables.

Refreshable tables are a distinct improvement over linked tables, because updates are fully controllable from Excel without opening Power Pivot. In addition, co-authoring in Excel in real-time with other users will be a smoother collaboration experience, because table updates occur only with explicit refresh operations.

Differences between refreshable and linked tables

Refreshable Tables

Linked Tables

Update occurs as a result of a refresh operation.

Update occurs as a result of a refresh operation, or when focus moves to the Power Pivot window.

No Link icon in Power Pivot:

Refreshable table icon in Power Pivot

Link icon in Power Pivot:

Linked table icon in Power Pivot

Create a refreshable table

There are several ways to create a refreshable table:

  1. From inside a table on your worksheet, do one of the following:

    1. Go to Insert > PivotTable, then check Add this data to the Data Model.

    2. From the Table Tools tab, select Summarize with PivotTable, then check Add this data to the Data Model.

    3. Click the Add to Data Model button in the Power Pivot ribbon.

  2. Or, you can add a column from a table on your worksheet to any PivotTable that is already connected the Data Model.

Update a refreshable table

There are several ways to update a refreshable table:

  1. Go to Data > Queries & Connections > Refresh All.

  2. Refresh any PivotTable or Query that contains data from the refreshable table.

  3. Go to Power Pivot > Tables > Update All.

  4. Go to Power Pivot > Manage > Refresh > Refresh All.

Notes: 

  • The Linked Tables ribbon tab in Power Pivot is no longer needed, and has been removed in Excel 2016 and Excel for Office 365.

  • Refreshable tables are not a new feature of Excel, and have existed in Data Models since Excel 2013. This means that when linked tables are converted to refreshable tables they are still fully compatible with every version of Excel that could work with the linked tables. Anyone who could previously interact with the workbook will continue to be able to do so.

Need more help?

You can always ask an expert in the Excel Tech Community, get support in the Answers community, or suggest a new feature or improvement on Excel User Voice.

Related Topics

Power Pivot: Powerful data analysis and data modeling in Excel
Power Pivot help

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