Possible problems with file links when the data source is moved

Copper Contributor

Hello everyone, I would like to drag&drop data files (MS Excel) to another directory in Windows Explorer. Can there be problems here if a file in another, parent directory has a link into a file that is affected by this move? Thanks a lot

2 Replies


When you move a file to another directory in Windows Explorer, it can potentially cause problems with file links if there are other files or applications that rely on the original file's location.

Here are a few scenarios to consider:

  1. Relative file paths: If the file link uses a relative file path instead of an absolute path, the link should still work as long as the relative relationship between the files is maintained. For example, if the link points to a file in a parent directory using "../", and you move the file to a new directory within the same parent directory structure, the link should still be valid. However, if the relative path is broken due to the move, the link may no longer work.
  2. Absolute file paths: If the file link uses an absolute file path (e.g., "C:\Folder\File.xlsx"), moving the file to a different directory will break the link since the absolute path will no longer be valid. You would need to update the link to reflect the new file location.
  3. Linked workbooks: If the Excel file you are moving contains links to other Excel workbooks, those links may be broken if the linked workbooks are not moved along with the main file. You may need to update the links within the Excel file to point to the correct locations of the linked workbooks.

To minimize potential problems with file links when moving files, it's a good practice to review and update any dependent links or references after the move. This ensures that all file paths are accurate and valid. Additionally, consider using relative file paths when creating links to make them more flexible and resilient to file movements within a directory structure.

It's always recommended to make backups of important files before performing any major file reorganization to mitigate any potential data loss or disruption caused by broken links.


If all this does not help, then a file (without sensitive data) or photos with a step-by-step description and knowledge of the Excel version, operating system, storage medium, etc. would be advantageous in order to be able to suggest something more precise.


Thanks a lot for this detailed answer and have a nice weekend.