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Use the Excel camera tool, or create a linked picture in Word or PowerPoint
Part three of a three-part series of blogs

This blog shows options for creating a webcam focused on one particular area of an Excel workbook! You can do this either by pasting the Excel range into PowerPoint or Word as a linked picture, or by using the Excel camera tool.

  1. The Excel Camera tool, and pasting to Word and PowerPoint
  2. Copying/pasting live images within Excel (the camera tool)
  3. Creating a live link to Excel from Word or PowerPoint (this blog)

Posted by Andy Brown on 25 April 2018

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Creating a live link to Excel from Word or PowerPoint

The principle described in the previous part of this blog can apply when you copy or data between Excel and (say) Word or PowerPoint:

PowerPoint presentation

This PowerPoint presentation looks like it contains a PowerPoint image and chart, but actually they're just embedded objects from Excel.


You can see that the above is true when you look at the presentation's file size:

Presentation file size

The presentation file size is by modern day standards tiny, because the real meat of the presentation is actually stored in Excel.

Creating a linked Excel object

It's easy to paste an Excel object into PowerPoint.  First copy the Excel range of data:

Copying Excel range

If you're copying a chart you'll need to select the cells surrounding it.


Choose to Paste Special:

PowerPoint MS Word
PowerPoint Word


Choose to paste the Excel range as a linked picture:

PowerPoint Paste Special Word paste special
PowerPoint Word

Editing a linked picture

To edit the Excel source for a linked picture, just double-click on it:

Opening a picture

You can also right-click to use the short-cut menu shown above.

Updating links

When you open a presentation or document containing links to Excel, you will see a message similar to this:

Update links

This is the message for PowerPoint 2016.  To ensure you're using the latest version of the Excel source, click on Update Links.

Note that if you email a PowerPoint presentation or Word document to someone, they will only be able to update links if they also have the original Excel workbook stored in the same folder path.

And that concludes this blog, which was meant to be just about the camera tool but got a bit carried away with itself!

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