I have a situation where I need to create a regular report from information in a file GDB (10.6) attribute table. I would like to avoid exporting the info to CSV each time I run the report, then importing into Excel, and would prefer to link the two so I just open the excel file, refresh to the current data in the gdb, and then save as PDF.

I know an .mdb can be linked but can excel read a .gdb table?

1 Answer 1


The short answer is no, you cannot link to a file GeoDatabase, there are no ODBC drivers, a real limitation of file geodatabases. It only gets worse as ArcPro does not support MS Access. ESRI seem to have gone out of their way to make what was seamless Interoperability with Microsoft applications a thing of the past, not sure what they expect their users to be doing?

You only have to go over to ESRI ideas and you'll discover users world wide screaming for support for Access. Suggest you get voting!

You can export directly to Excel though so no need to go via a CSV file, simply search help file for Table to Excel tool.

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    The long answer is yes, provided you're willing to put in the effort, you can access a file GDB using ArcObjects (or FileGDB API) or even python then using the Microsoft Office API you can write data directly to an excel spreadsheet (python stackoverflow.com/questions/13437727/…).. doing it this way is tedious and difficult to modify; if you don't want to export to CSV then export to DBF (or Excel) which are a more robust format, readable by Excel, and link the Excel cells to the DBF to improve formatting in your printable workbook. May 13, 2019 at 23:53

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