Linking an Excel spread sheet to an AutoCAD drawing and displaying the excel table as an AutoCAD “Table” is very helpful depending on how you “link” the Excel file to the AutoCAD table.
In this post, I describe how to make an AutoCAD “Data Link” first, and then inserting a table using this Data Link.
I have seen a few examples where using other methods have cause issues. So after testing various ways, I think that this method is a solid method.
In this scenario, we have engineers who need to update a drawing list that happens to be an excel file (.xlsx) and they would like to link this to AutoCAD so that when they make changes to the table, those changes are included in the AutoCAD file.
First we need to make a “Data Link”
Click the “Data Link” button on the “Linking & Extraction” panel of the “Insert” tab of the ribbon.
- When the “Data Link Manager” opens, click “Create a new Excel Data Link“
- Give the Data Link a unique name
- Then click OK
- Now link the “Data Link” to an excel file by clicking the ellipsis button ( 3 dot button)
- Navigate to the Excel file and select it
- Then click “Open“
The dialog box called ” New Excel Data Link” will display and an additional preview is now shown in the bottom portion.
One very important thing to note about this Dialog Box is to expand it by clicking the right arrow. This allows for additional formatting options for the AutoCAD Table.
Now you will insert an AutoCAD Table (shown below)
When the “Insert Table” dialog box displays, click “From a data link“
Select the Data Link that you named earlier from the drop down list
Then click OK
Place the table in the drawing
After the table has been placed, you should be good to go.
Lets say that an engineer updates the Excel spreadsheet. You will either get the below notification when the person has saved and checked in the file or the next time you open the drawing.
The AutoCAD table will not update by itself, you will need to update it manually.
To do this:
- Place the cursor in a cell of the table
- Click the “Download from Source” button in the ribbon
There are many other options available while placing a Data-Linked table so please look further in to this topic to meet your needs. This is a high-level look at adding a data link table to a drawing.