"This workbook contains external data connections or BI features that are not supported." when you use a guest link to a workbook in Excel Online

This article was written by Tom Schauer, Technical Specialist.

Symptoms

When you click slicers in a Microsoft SharePoint Online PowerPivot workbook that contains external data connections or Business Intelligence (BI) features that are not supported, you receive the following error:

This workbook contains external data connections or BI features that are not supported.

the error message dialog box

Cause

By default, a guest link URL that is provided by SharePoint doesn't include the required parameters for guests to use workbooks that contain data connections to data models or BI.

Resolution

By default, a URL that is accessed by a guest will be formatted like:

https://sharepointserver/:x:/r/_layouts/15/Doc.aspx?sourcedoc=%7B5e748b77-3447-4dce-a676-c1d12c4ef531%7D&action=default

To use the data refresh or BI function, replace "action=default" with "action=embedview&wdbipreview=true". Then the URL will be like:

https://sharepointserver/:x:/r/_layouts/15/Doc.aspx?sourcedoc=%7B5e748b77-3447-4dce-a676-c1d12c4ef531%7D&action=embedview&wdbipreview=true