Excel 365 Save or Open an ODC File

In this article, I will show you how to open an ODC file in Excel, or create one if you need to.

What is an ODC (Office Data Connection) File?

An ODC file contains the information related to an external data query created with Power Query (also known as Get & Transform) in Excel. The ODC file can be used separately from the workbook file to share the query without sharing the rest of the data in a workbook. This way, queries can be shared across different workbooks where you may want to use the query. For instance, you may have a query to get the latest bitcoin prices. By creating (or using) an ODC file, you can set this query up once and use it in one workbook to make price forecasts and another to monitor the value of your personal portfolio.

Open an ODC File

If you have an ODC file that you’d like to use, there are multiple ways to open it.

Method 1: Double Click the File!

If you haven’t tried it already, you should be able to simply double click the file to open it in Excel if you have a recent version of Excel 365. This will open the connection with the query placed in the first sheet and nothing else in the workbook. Sometimes, this is what you want. If you want a bit more control over the placement of the query, use the next method.

Method 2: Add the Query to an Existing Workbook

Screenshot of existing connection button

To open the ODC file, click the Data tab and then click Existing Connections.

Screenshot of selecting the appropriate query

Select the desired query from the box or use the “Browse for More…” button to find the one that you need.

Screenshot of choosing placement for the query result table

Use the Import Data dialog to choose where you would like to place the query result table, or use other options to put it in a PivotTable or only create a connection.

Create an ODC File

If you want to share a connection you have made with someone else, or use it in another workbook, you can export the connection to an ODC File.

Screenshot showing the connection properties menu option.

Go to the Data tab on the ribbon, and click the bottom portion of the Refresh All button where there is a downward facing arrow. Click Connection Properties…

In the query properties window, click the Definition tab and then click Export Connection File…

That’s it! You can select a place to save the file. To use it, refer to the instructions above for opening an ODC file.

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