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Microsoft KB Archive/101892

From BetaArchive Wiki

XL4 Err Msg: Cannot Open Dependent Document with Same Name

The information in this article applies to:

  • Microsoft Excel for Windows, versions 4.0, 4.0a
  • Microsoft Excel for the Macintosh, version 4.0


When you open a worksheet or workbook in Microsoft Excel version 4.0, you may receive the following error message:

Cannot open a dependent document that contains references to different sheets with the same name.

Choosing OK in the error message dialog box will not open the sheet.


A formula in the current sheet (dependent document) may contain links to external sheets that have identical filenames. When the formulas are entered, some of them may have been entered with the complete path for these files while others may contain only part of the path. Microsoft Excel interprets these formulas as links to different sheets located in separate directories.

If the link to a sheet does not specify the full path, Microsoft Excel will search for the sheet in the same directory where the dependent document is opened. If the dependent document is opened from the same directory as the sheet with the full path, the link attempts to open another sheet with the same filename in the same directory, and Microsoft Excel is unable to distinguish one sheet from the other.


To work around this situation, do either of the following:

  • Open the dependent document from the directory in which the file was originally created and change all links to include their full paths.


  • Rename the source files and change all links to include their full paths.

Additional query words: 4.00a XL4

Keywords : kberrmsg
Version : WINDOWS:4.0,4.0a; MACINTOSH:4.0
Issue type : kbprb
Technology :

Last Reviewed: April 5, 1999
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