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I am using SharePoint Online and Excel 2016. When I try to "Export to Excel" a custom list, I get the following errors:

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My version of Excel 2016 comes from Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2016. I am the SharePoint Admin, so it shouldn't be a permission error. Please advise. Thank you.

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first of all, try using a different browser like Chrome/ Firefox, where the 'query.iqy' file will be downloaded automatically to your 'Downloads' folder. Now, go to the download location and right click on the *.iqy file to go to 'Properties' menu.

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Here, you will see on check box called 'Unblock'. This is a security feature from Windows which prevents file downloaded from other location to execute scripts in your machine. You can click on the 'Unblock' check box to tell windows that you trust the file and then open the file and click 'Enable' in the security notice to load the data in Excel sheet properly.

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I can reproduce your issue, When I "Export to Excel" a custom list, I get the following notification:"data connections have been blocked. if you choose to enable......"

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Choose Enable, it will open the excel.

If you don't want to see the notification, change external content settings for Excel in the Trust Center:

In Excel, click the File tab > Click Options > Trust Center > Trust Center Settings, and then click External Content > choose the option "Enable all Data Connections (not recommended)" under Security settings for Data Connections:

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For more detailed information, refer to the following article:

https://support.office.com/en-us/article/block-or-unblock-external-content-in-office-documents-10204ae0-0621-411f-b0d6-575b0847a795

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