Chapter 18: Integrating External Data into Excel Reporting

In This Chapter

Importing data from Microsoft Access databases

Importing data from SQL Server databases

Running SQL Server stored procedures from Excel

Creating dynamic connections with VBA

Creating a data model with multiple external data tables

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all the data you come across could be neatly packed into one easy-to-use Excel table? The reality is that sometimes the data you need comes from external data sources. External data is exactly what it sounds like: data that isn’t located in the Excel workbook in which you’re operating. Some examples of external data sources are text files, Access tables, SQL Server tables, and even other Excel workbooks.

This chapter explores some efficient ways to get external data into your Excel data models. Before jumping in, however, your humble authors want to throw out one disclaimer. There are numerous ways to get data into Excel. In fact, between the functionality found in the UI and the VBA/code techniques, there are too many techniques to focus on in one chapter. So for this endeavor, you focus on a handful of techniques that can be implemented in most situations and don’t come with a lot of pitfalls and gotchas.

Importing Data from Microsoft Access

Microsoft Access is used in many organizations to manage a series of tables that interact with each other, such as a Customers table, an Orders table, and an Invoices table. Managing data in Access ...

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