We are using web services interface to access Excel Services.

When we have two sessions that access the same spreadsheet, it looks like they see each others data.

Is this how it is supposed to work? Should they not get their own copy of the spreadsheet?


An example: loan calculation spreadsheet

  • User A opens spreadsheet sets loan amount to 100
  • User B opens spreadsheet sets loan amount to 200
  • User A gets the monthly payment

I expect that user A will get a monthly payment based on 100 since he is working on his copy of the spreadsheet.

3 Answers 3


That's the whole point of Excel services, that there is a SINGLE spreadsheet - or single point of truth, if you like. This spreadsheet lives on the server, and stays there.

If both users would get copies of a spreadsheet, it would be like hosting a spreadsheet on a plain web server.

I guess you need to create multiple spreadsheets on the server, one for each user.

  • @Jaap, I have updated my question, hopefully it is a bit clearer Nov 30, 2009 at 17:49

Jaap's answer is exactly right in that the entire purpose of Excel services is a 'Single Version of the Truth' for your users, especially with the web services portion.

If the users had opened the Excel Services sheet through the web front-end, the data would be different after the change up until User B saves the changes back to the SharePoint server. If they don't save back, it shouldn't take affect.


We have now found that the problem was not with Excel Services.

Since the other answers did not refer to Excel Services Web Service Interface. Here is how it works.

  • When you open a spreadsheet with Excel Services Web Service Interface, Excel Services creates a copy of the spreadsheet in memory on the server.
  • It then passes back a sessionID, which is the key to your copy of the spreadsheet in memory.
  • You can have as many sessions open as the memory on your Server can handle (there is probably some theoretical limit)
  • As long as you pass the right key you get access to your copy.
  • You do not affect anyone else until you choose to save your copy.

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