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Linking to an excel file stored in SharePoint 2010

I am having a load of trouble linking to an Excel file in SharePoint 2010.  I can find the file in Power BI application, but I cannot seem to get to the file in desktop Power BI.


In the app version, you can search for the file as there is a message:

Do not have the URL handy? You can click Connect to see the content available to you at the root level.


On the desktop version, no such help exists, it only asks for the URL.


I have tried copy-paste the URL from my sharepoint folder - does not work.  I have tried to simplify the address back to the company root ( - this DOES work but I cannot figure out the syntax for getting into a sub-folder.  I suspect this is because the folder I'm trying to access is in a sub-site ... stumped on how to get there. 


I've tried name/folder name/


I've tried %20 for spaces in the file folder names but that isn't working either.  I am 100% sure I'm signed into my SharePoint site.  Additionally, I've provided my login details in the Access SharePoint dialog box and confirmed they are correct.


1) Can anyone help with how to get into the sub-site? 



Rhetorical - why does the app make linking to SharePoint so easy with the user helper while the desktop application doesn't? 


I've written a tutorial on how to connect to sharepoint sites via PowerBI Desktop.  I will note I was using Office 365 and using Shareptoint 2013,  See if this tutorial will help you connect to the files you are looking for.

Mike Carlo ( )
Microsoft Employee
Microsoft Employee

VanCat2016 -- I think you're correct in using the %20 for the space in the SharePoint name.


In your example, "Site Pages" is an unusual place to have a sub-site. Normally you end up with things more like "" are you sure your SharePoint site is underneath the SitePages directory?

I'm not sure actually.  


I'm working with a solution (maybe) that someone else gave me from another source.  The proposed solution is to map the SharePoint location via Network within Windows Explorer.  Then, rather than linking to the file using the choices provided by PowerBI internally, link to the file by choosing "File" and navigating to the file in SharePoint via my mapped Network location.


It makes sense that this would work, but I'm getting an access denied error which is now an entirely different (internal company) problem.  Maybe it is actually the root of my inability to grab the data in the first place.  I'm the first to look into BI tools at my company.  I'm really hoping I can get it up and running soon.


How are you trying to map to the location? It can be tricky to get the syntax right, but if you go to the SharePoint library and click the "Open with Explorer" button, it should attempt to open up the location for you. If it works, you can map that location. If it doesn't, sounds like you may have an issue like you expected where you don't have the appropriate access to the files.

Community Champion
Community Champion

@VanCat2016 agree with you there are some differences in the way connector works in power bi service and desktop. I suggest you post this as an idea to standardise sharepoint connector across both.


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