Workaround Linking a spreadsheet with a alphanumeric field

Hello,  We really would like to link a spreadsheet but because of Microsoft default rules, I think the only workaround is to import the spreadsheet.  Do you have a solution that is transparent to the user?  FYI...I prefer linking since that spreadsheet has many changes and I don't want to write code every month.
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CFMIFinancial Systems AnalystAsked:
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andymacfConnect With a Mentor Commented:
I think I have managed to get this to work.

What you need to do is highlight your column, 'Cost Center', then right click somewhere on the highlighted area and go to 'Format Cells', then choose 'text'. Click 'OK'.  Now create your link in access and it should work fine.

Cheers
Andy
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RgGray3Commented:
I am not sure if linking to a spreadsheet is an orphaned feature in 2007...  but I do it in 2003.

Does it need to be linked for edit/update or for viewing only?
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CFMIFinancial Systems AnalystAuthor Commented:
The spreadsheet is xlsx (2007); viewing only but transferring the data and sometimes it reveals #NUM...
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andymacfCommented:
You can link to a spreadsheet by clicking the External Data, Import, More.  Select ODBC Database, Link to the datasource by creating a linked table.  The click the Machine Data Source tab, and create a new link to your excel spreadsheet.  This works really well, I'm assuming this is what you are trying to do.
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andymacfCommented:
I meant to add, that this is completely transparent to users
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RgGray3Commented:
If forget If it is displaying #NUM indicates a non numeric data in an expected numeric field... or...

Make the field bigger... wider...

I am NOT a big Excel user but I believe that is what happens when it can not display the WHOLE value...    rather than give you a partial number it puts in #NUM

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RgGray3Commented:
err....   I forget not If forget...   Fat & sloppy fingers
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CFMIFinancial Systems AnalystAuthor Commented:
Hello, I tried to follow the instructions and I have accomplished this before linking SQL Server tables but for an Excel spreadsheet, I receive an error message:  You cannot use ODBC to Import from, Export to, or Link an external Microsoft  Office Access or ISAM database table to your database.  Hopefully, I am missing a step?
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andymacfCommented:
Dear CFMI
Apologies I have misguided you. The correct way to link is as follow:
In the Import area, click Excel, when the new window opens browse for your file then select 'Link to the data source .......'. You will then be asked what sheets you want to link to and follow the prompts. Your linked table will then appear at the bottom of the table view screen and can be used as a source
Andy
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CFMIFinancial Systems AnalystAuthor Commented:
Hello, I can import which allows me to modify the field definitions but when you LINK, a screen appears asking about Headers then a screen appears to Name the file - there isn't a Link option to modify field definitions.  Please HELP...
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CFMIFinancial Systems AnalystAuthor Commented:
Hello, my current workaround is to have the user insert a new column and use this statement:  =TEXT(L2,"00000") to modify Alphanumeric fields to text since Linking believes it is a Numeric field.
However, the user always needs to do this action and I was hoping for a better automated way.
Please HELP...
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andymacfCommented:
Are you able to post a stripped down version of both of your files so that we can see what you are trying to achieve
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CFMIFinancial Systems AnalystAuthor Commented:
Hello,  I really appreciate your help with the attached spreadsheet.
Beeline-Milestone-Invoice.xls
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CFMIFinancial Systems AnalystAuthor Commented:
Perfect, you are a genius!!!
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