Skip to main content

How to create external data validation in another sheet or workbook?

Generally, we use Data Validation to limit users to enter the values we want, but have you ever tried to create an external data validation in anther sheet or workbook, which means that the source data and the data validation are not in the same sheet or even same workbook? In this article, I will introduce the method on handling with this problem in Excel.

Create external data validation in another sheet

Create external data validation in different workbook


arrow blue right bubble Create external data validation in another sheet

Take creating drop down list for example, I will create the source in one sheet, then use Range Name to create the drop down list in another sheet based on the value source.

1. Create the source value of the drop down list in a sheet as you want. See screenshot:
doc external data validation 1

2. Select these source values, and go to the Name Box to define a range name for the cells, here I enter Country in the Name Box, and then press Enter key to finish the naming. See screenshot:
doc external data validation 2

3. Go to the sheet you want to create this external drop down list, and select a cell or range to place the drop down list, G1:G4, for instance, and click Data > Data Validation. See screenshot:
doc external data validation 3

4. In the Data Validation dialog, click Settings tab, and select List from the Allow drop down list, then enter =Country (Country is the name you have defined for the source range in step 2, you can change it as you want) the into the box of Source. See screenshot:
doc external data validation 4

5. Click OK, now the external data validation has been created.
doc external data validation 5


arrow blue right bubble Create external data validation in different workbook

To create external data validation in another workbook, you also need to use Name Range.

Take creating drop down list for instance.

1. Create the source values as you need in a sheet, and then select source values, and go to Name Box to give the source range a name, and press Enter key, take CusName for instance. See screenshot:
doc external data validation 6

2. Then go to the workbook you want to create drop down list, select a blank column in a sheet, Column J for instance, and click Formulas > Define Name. See screenshot:
doc external data validation 7

3. In the New Name dialog, enter a name in the Name box, and select Workbook from the Scope list, and then type this formula =Source.xlsx!CustName (Source is the workbook name of workbook the source data in, and CustName is the range name you created for the source data in step1, you can change them as you need) in the Refers to text box. See screenshot:
doc external data validation 8

4. Click OK. And then go to select the range you want to create the external drop down list, L1:L4, and click Data > Data Validation. See screenshot:
doc external data validation 9

5. In the Data Validation dialog, click Settings tab, and select List from Allow drop down list, and enter this formula =MyCustList (MyCustList is the range name you give the blank column in step 3, you can change it as you need) into the Source box. See screenshot:
doc external data validation 10

6. Click OK. Now the external data validation in another workbook has been created. See screenshot:
doc external data validation 11

Note: Only when the two workbook are open at the same time (the source data workbook and the data validation workbook), the external data validation can correctly work.

Best Office Productivity Tools

🤖 Kutools AI Aide: Revolutionize data analysis based on: Intelligent Execution   |  Generate Code  |  Create Custom Formulas  |  Analyze Data and Generate Charts  |  Invoke Kutools Functions
Popular Features: Find, Highlight or Identify Duplicates   |  Delete Blank Rows   |  Combine Columns or Cells without Losing Data   |   Round without Formula ...
Super Lookup: Multiple Criteria VLookup    Multiple Value VLookup  |   VLookup Across Multiple Sheets   |   Fuzzy Lookup ....
Advanced Drop-down List: Quickly Create Drop Down List   |  Dependent Drop Down List   |  Multi-select Drop Down List ....
Column Manager: Add a Specific Number of Columns  |  Move Columns  |  Toggle Visibility Status of Hidden Columns  |  Compare Ranges & Columns ...
Featured Features: Grid Focus   |  Design View   |   Big Formula Bar    Workbook & Sheet Manager   |  Resource Library (Auto Text)   |  Date Picker   |  Combine Worksheets   |  Encrypt/Decrypt Cells    Send Emails by List   |  Super Filter   |   Special Filter (filter bold/italic/strikethrough...) ...
Top 15 Toolsets12 Text Tools (Add Text, Remove Characters, ...)   |   50+ Chart Types (Gantt Chart, ...)   |   40+ Practical Formulas (Calculate age based on birthday, ...)   |   19 Insertion Tools (Insert QR Code, Insert Picture from Path, ...)   |   12 Conversion Tools (Numbers to Words, Currency Conversion, ...)   |   7 Merge & Split Tools (Advanced Combine Rows, Split Cells, ...)   |   ... and more

Supercharge Your Excel Skills with Kutools for Excel, and Experience Efficiency Like Never Before. Kutools for Excel Offers Over 300 Advanced Features to Boost Productivity and Save Time.  Click Here to Get The Feature You Need The Most...

Description


Office Tab Brings Tabbed interface to Office, and Make Your Work Much Easier

  • Enable tabbed editing and reading in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher, Access, Visio and Project.
  • Open and create multiple documents in new tabs of the same window, rather than in new windows.
  • Increases your productivity by 50%, and reduces hundreds of mouse clicks for you every day!
Comments (6)
No ratings yet. Be the first to rate!
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
"Only when the two workbook are open at the same time (the source data workbook and the data validation workbook), the external data validation can correctly work." Yes this is rather a big problem isn't it? We would not usually have two workbooks open at the same time, we more likely wish to use an old workbook and simply copy the data validation rules to the new spreadsheet. I gave up trying to do this using copy and paste, instead wrote a VBA macro which applied the data validation rule to a large number of cells in one go. Use 'Record Macro' to set up the VBA commands and make minor adjustments to the resulting code to do the trick. Worked fine.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Glad its not just me that can't get the external data validation to work. Frustratingly it seemed to once but never again. No idea what I did that time.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Hello, thanks for showing us how to have a drop-down list linked to an external file. However I could not set up the Data Validation to work, even though I have selected to STOP any invalid entry, which a number not included in the drop-down list itself. Is there any way where I can circumnavigate this?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Create external data validation in different workbook. This tips not working for sharing file one PC to another PC. How it will works? pls. suggest me.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Sorry I have no idea on this.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Thank you so much for this article! I could not get Excel to allow me to reference another sheet for a data validation list. I can only surmise that it is because of the version. Very frustrating! However, I did not know about naming the data list, and by doing so and using the =[data list name], it worked like a charm. Many thanks!
There are no comments posted here yet
Please leave your comments in English
Posting as Guest
×
Rate this post:
0   Characters
Suggested Locations