Excel: Use a Trusted Location to Prevent Excel's Constant Warnings

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Problem: Excel is more security-conscious than in the past. In fact, many features that I rely on are now disabled, such as links to external files, external queries, and macros.

Strategy: Microsoft will ease up if you store your files in a trusted location. Follow these steps:

  1. Store all your files with macros and data for links in a folder on your hard drive. Make sure no viruses are in the folder. Delete any dragons, centaurs, and grues from the folder. Make sure you don't store your kid's delete-all-files-on-the hard-drive science project in that folder.
  2. Select File, Options. In the left pane of the Excel Options dialog, choose Trust Center. Click the Trust Center Settings button. In the left pane, choose Trusted Locations.
  3. Near the bottom, click the Add New Location button.
  4. In the Microsoft Office Trusted Location dialog, click the Browse button. Browse to the correct folder and click OK.

  1. Open anything from this folder without warnings.
    1. If you want the subfolders of the location to be trusted as well, select the Subfolders of This Location Are Also Trusted check box.
    2. Click OK to add the trusted location. Click OK to close the Trust Center. Click OK to close the Excel Options dialog.

    Results: You will now be able to open files with links and external data queries without a hassle, if they are in a trusted location.

    Additional Details: Microsoft is now counting on you. Please, don't randomly right-click on attachments in spam e-mails and choose to save them in the trusted location.