Windows: Drag and drop to insert a link to a file instead of attaching or inserting the file
The last version of OneNote allowed me to drop a file in, and paste a link to the file rather than attaching or inserting the file. This meant I could keep my files in a well managed folder-based structure, and yet link to them from OneNote.
Office 2013 removes this.
Martin Lopez commented
Completely agree -- please bring back this function.
Agree with others. OneNote no longer has the ability to insert a link to a file on my computer. It previously has this function. Unbelievable that MS removed such a basic function. Makes no sense. Please bring back this function.
Bring the feature back please!
It is very pity to realized, that OneNote is degradating by loosing such functions as "insert link".
Please, turn on again this function!
If some body still needs the solution of this problem, I have written VBA macro for Excel. It helps to minimize the steps:
1.Path can be copied with the standart function in Win10, e.g. "Alt+3".
2.Then go to Excel
3. Run the macro, e.g. "Strg+Q"
(Macro makes the link active and open active Page in OneNote)
So just one step more as before. I can live with it. Hope in the future Microsoft solve this problem...
Macro for VBA
' PathToOneNote Makro
' Tastenkombination: Strg+q
Dim s As String
s = .GetText
iLong = Len(s)
i1 = InStr(1, s, Chr(34), vbTextCompare)
If i1 <> 0 Then
s = Right(s, iLong - 1)
iLong = Len(s)
i1 = InStrRev(s, Chr(34), iLong, vbTextCompare)
If i1 <> 0 Then
s = Left(s, iLong - 1)
iText = "file:\\\" & s
'Application.CutCopyMode = False
Application.WindowState = xlMinimized
Application.CutCopyMode = False
Dim oneNoteApp As oneNote.Application
Set oneNoteApp = New oneNote.Application
oneNoteApp.Windows.CurrentWindow.Active = True
If intentional, it was removed because it was utterly unreliable. People didn't know how to use it properly and blamed MS for what's actually user error.
The problem is that "insert link" is just a path+filename. So when you rename or move the file (or rename/move the containing folder), you break the link. Most people don't know this (including many people in this thread, apparently), so they inevitably break their own links, don't realize what they did, and blame OneNote for "malfunctioning." (The same goes for links in Word.) This has been a problem for 20 years.
That time you gave a powerpoint presentation but your images were gone and your video didn't play? Yeah, probably broken links. And don't get me started on network drives and removable media. Or people copying their .ppt files onto other machines, expecting the linked media files to still work.
In other words, you can NEVER rename/move/organize your files and folders (unless you want to risk breaking your links).
It's an antiquated, fragile system that's needed replacing for a long time.
So when MS removed drag n drop, it prevented people from inserting links willy nilly (and thus preventing the inevitable complaints that the links don't work).
But inserting "links to files" still exists! You just have to do it manually (using copy as path or CTRL+K). This way, only people who understand how it works will use it (for the most part) because you're shown the actual file path.
Re-adding drag and drop would create more problems than it solves. Yes, it's a nice quality of life feature, but it enables too much user error and perceived unreliability elsewhere. And again, the basic functionality still exists, so it's not a total loss. There's even a "Copy Path" button in Explorer now, which you can pin to the Quick Access Toolbar and bind to Alt+3/4/5/etc (instructions: https://superuser.com/a/1266115).
A better option is linking shortcuts, which works even if the target file is renamed or moved. Example: "C:\Users\me\Desktop\TARGET FOLDER - Shortcut.lnk" instead of "C:\Users\me\Desktop\TARGET FOLDER". Keep the shortcut files in a central location and don't rename/move them.
In the future, MS might use Object IDs, which is also immune to moves/renames and even more robust (for limitations, read about it here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/desktop/fileio/distributed-link-tracking-and-object-identifiers)
Yes please bring the drag and drop link back. The function was very efficient and One notes becomes suddenly much less attractive.
Bring the copy link back!!! :'-(
I seriously cannot believe this feature has been removed. I have for sometime now been explaining to so many colleagues that MS have got it right with OneNote and of of the key reasons was the ability to link everything together. To get rid of this feature is UNBELIEVABLE... its like throwing out the advantage MS had finally gained.
Rather than vent, let me plead .... PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, get this sorted ASAP
Godfrey Boyd commented
For what little value this comment may invoke I hereby add my voice to the multitude and request that this feature is reintroduced. I am happy to make any sacrifice to the Gods of Microsoft for its reinclusion in OneNote. I have many goodly sized chickens and a small goat that I am happy to offer as burnt offerings at a convenient Microsoft altar.
Lords of Microsoft - hear our prayer!
A workaround might be to create a shortcut to the document or folder, and add that as a file to OneNote. Thus Onenote keeps a bunch of shortcuts in its own files while keeping the actual files I their respective folders.
you can add a link to a file by using the link option (Ctrl-K) and selecting the file icon, still not as easy as drag and drop though
Simon Rear commented
I too have been somewhat frustrated by the omission of the "Insert link to file" feature, so much so that I have recently decided to do something about it. I have developed the "Convert Copied Paths to File Hyperlinks" macro using the Onetastic Onenote addin.
When run, the macro converts selected pasted "Copied Paths" into file hyperlinks. See a demonstration of the macro in action here;
The Onetastic Onenote addin required to run this macro can be downloaded from;
The "Convert Copied Paths to File Hyperlinks" macro can be downloaded from within the addin by clicking on "Download Macros" from the Onetastic ribbon and selecting the Hyperlink category. If you find this macro useful please donate by clicking on link below to encourage the development of more useful timesavers;
http://www.paypal.me/SimonRear - Thank you!
At least it should be possible to select multiple files at once.
Having to link one by one is an unnecessary time-consuming non-sense task.
Within few days they could enable a feature like that, so why not do it?
Just give us a reason Microsoft... You could be the best, however, you insist in letting us down...
The process of creating links to files takes TOOOO long. When I drag a file from File Explorer to One Note it should give me the option of inserting the file, inserting the file contents, or just creating a link to the file on my hard drive.
When I go to a meeting, I want to have quick links to files ON MY HARDRIVE (so mad that it keeps trying to link me to OneDrive) that are related to that meeting.
However, it takes a really long process to insert link because I have to every single time go through the process of finding the folder where the files are on my hard drive. I can't use "quick access" because those always create a link to OneDrive which half the time doesn't open the file.
Outsource to other tech companies if necessary but please get the important features done
I just can't believe how one of the biggest companies in the world cannot get even the most basic things right, it is beyond my comprehension... 3 years and nothing has been done, Microsoft just knows how to get everyone mad !
add mind mapping to link OneNote pages
and improve tagging system
Our office upgraded to 2016; SHOCKED that you can't create a link to a folder or file in one note, absolutely unforgivable.
Please bring this feature back
Charanjit Channi commented
Why microsoft removed the feature to insert a file link when drag and drop a file? It is very Important feature.