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Hyperlinks in Shared Workbooks

Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Hyperlinks in Shared Workbooks.

Dan has a shared workbook into which he needs to insert a hyperlink. However, as long as the workbook is shared, the hyperlink features in Excel are not available. Dan wonders if there is a way to insert hyperlinks into shared workbooks.

The short answer is no, there is not. When you choose to share a workbook, some options in Excel are simply not available any more; inserting hyperlinks is one of those options that is removed once the workbook is shared.

If you absolutely must add the hyperlink to the workbook, the only option is to unshare the workbook, add the hyperlink, and then again share the workbook. You'll no longer be able to add any more hyperlinks, but the one you added while the workbook was unshared will work just fine.

There is one caveat in taking this approach to adding the hyperlink—you need to be careful that you don't unshare the workbook if you have the Track Changes feature of Excel turned on. In the process of unsharing the workbook, Excel will turn off the tracking and discard the change history. If this is important to you, the only option is to make sure that you add the hyperlinks before sharing the workbook and first turning on Track Changes.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2912) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Hyperlinks in Shared Workbooks.

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Comments for this tip:

sandeep    12 Sep 2014, 07:02
@Brett - that doesn't work, it just looks like a hyperlink.
sivaditya dev    15 Jun 2013, 15:33
sorry dear experts. all are wrong. mr phipps, if you copy a hyperlink text to a shared excel. it will paste a dummy of the hyperlink but the function of hyperlink would not work.
there is only one way to insert a hyperlink ib shareworkbook is by using the hyperlink formula
the formula is =Hyperlink("path of the file to link","name u wish to put for the link")
please try and feel free to ask questions
Brett Phipps    08 May 2013, 11:39
This isn't true. You can create hyperlinks in shared documents. Just open a new spreadsheet that isn't shared. Insert the hyperlink that you want there. Copy that cell and paste it into your shared document and voila you've inserted the hyperlink.

I have no idea why it's disabled when you share them, but this is an easy work around.

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