How to Fix the “Cannot Insert Object” Error in Excel?
Summary: The error “cannot insert object” in MS Excel can prevent you from modifying objects in the worksheet. This blog will discuss the primary reasons behind this error and the possible solutions to fix it. You will also learn about a professional Excel repair software that can help fix the error if it has occurred due to corruption in Excel file.
Many users have reported encountering the “cannot insert object” error while adding/embedding objects into the Excel file. It usually occurs when using Object Linking and Embedding (OLE) to add content (PDF, Microsoft documents) from external applications to worksheet. The error can also occur when using ActiveX control in Excel. Below, we’ll explain why you cannot insert object into Excel sheet and how to troubleshoot the issue.
Why the “Cannot Insert Object” Error Occurs?
- Macro Settings can prevent the insertion of objects into a workbook.
- The Excel file in which you are trying to add an element is corrupted.
- The object (you are inserting into the workbook) is damaged.
- Object size limitations.
- System’s insufficient memory might prevent new objects’ addition.
- Incompatible Excel file format.
- Add-ins controls are disabled.
- Incompatible or faulty Add-ins.
- Issue with Security Settings.
Methods to Fix the “Cannot Insert Object” Error in Excel
You may encounter the “Cannot insert object” error when trying to add an element stored on a network. It can occur due to issues with the file link, such as incorrect file location. In such a case, you can check the link by selecting the link to file option from the Insert tab.
Sometimes, the error can occur if the file in which you are trying to insert the object is locked and password-protected. In this case, you can unprotect the Excel file. If the issue still persists, then you can follow the below methods.
Method 1: Check and Change Restricted Security Settings
Excel provides security settings to protect your workbook. Sometimes, these settings can prevent inserting objects in the file. You can change the security settings to allow Excel to insert objects. To do so, follow these steps:
- Open your Excel application.
- Locate the File and then click Options.
- In Excel Options, click Trust Center.
- Click Trust Center Settings.
- In the Trust Center Settings window, select Protected View from the left pane.
- Under Protected View, unselect the below three options:
- Enable Protected View for files originating from the internet.
- Enable Protected View for files located in potentially unsafe locations.
- Enable Protected View for Outlook attachments.
- Click OK.
- Once you’re done with this, click on Macro Settings in the Trust Center window.
- Under Macro Settings, make sure “Disable all macros without notification” is not selected. If it is selected, then unselect it. After that, click OK.
- Restart Excel to apply the changes.
Method 2: Uninstall Microsoft Office Updates
You can also encounter the “Cannot insert object” error in Excel after installing MS Office updates. It might be due to the issues with the installed updates. To fix this, you can uninstall the recently installed Office updates. To uninstall the Office updates, follow these steps:
- Go to the system’s Control Panel.
- Click Programs and then click Program and Features.
- Search for “View Installed Updates” and click on the desired Office updates.
- Right-click on it and then click Uninstall.
- Follow the uninstallation steps on the screen.
- Once the process is complete, restart the system.
Method 3: Check Memory Usage
The “Cannot insert object” issue can also occur if your system is low on memory. You can check and close unnecessary processes and applications running in the background to free up memory. To do so, follow these steps:
- Press CTRL + ALT + DEL on the keyboard and click Task Manager.
- Click on the Processes tab and search for any unnecessary processes.
- Right-click on the process and then select End Task.
- Restart Excel to see if the issue is fixed.
Method 4: Check Excel File Size
If your Excel file size exceeds the prescribed limit, it can also lead to the “Cannot insert Excel object” error. So, check the Excel file size. You can reduce the file size by removing unnecessary objects, such as formulas or images.
Method 5: Check and Change Excel ActiveX Settings
You can get the “Excel cannot insert object” error if your Excel file contains macros, controls, and other interactive buttons. It usually occurs if the ActiveX Controls option is disabled. You can check and change the ActiveX Settings to fix the issue. Here are the steps:
- Open your Excel application.
- Navigate to File and then click Options.
- In Excel Options, click the Trust Center tab.
- In the Trust Center Settings, click ActiveX Settings.
- Under ActiveX Settings, make sure the “Enable all controls without restrictions and without prompting” option is selected.
- If the option is not selected, then select it and click OK.
- Restart the Excel and check if the error is fixed or not.
Method 6: Repair the Excel Workbook
The “Cannot insert object” error can occur if the object you are trying to insert is corrupted or the file in which you are inserting the object is damaged. If the issue has occurred due to a corrupted Excel file, then you can repair the file using the Open and Repair utility in MS Excel. To use this Microsoft-inbuilt utility, follow these steps:
- In the Excel application, go to the File tab and then click Open.
- Click Browse to choose the affected file.
- The Open dialog box is displayed. Click on the corrupted file.
- Click on the arrow next to the Open button and then click Open and Repair.
- Click on Repair.
- After repair, a message will appear (as shown in the below figure).
- Click Close.
If the Open and Repair utility fails to fix the issue, then try a professional Excel Repair software, like Stellar Repair for Excel. It is designed to repair severely corrupted Excel files. It can restore all the Excel file objects, such as tables, charts, formulas, etc. It helps fix all types of corruption related errors. The software is compatible with all versions of Excel.
You might encounter the “Cannot insert object” error when embedding or inserting objects in Excel. In this post, we have discussed the possible solutions to fix this error. We have also mentioned an Excel repair software that can help to easily repair the corrupted Excel file and recover all the data. You can download the Stellar Repair for Excel’s free demo version to preview the recoverable objects of the corrupted Excel file.