"The specified file is not a valid spreadsheet or contains no data to import" Error in importing a Excel spreadsheet in BPOS

Just a quick post today.  I've been doing some work on hosted SharePoint which is part of the Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS).


If you haven't taken a look you can get a months free trial here


I ran into an error today where when I attempted to import a spreadsheet into a list I was told "The specified file is not a valid spreadsheet or contains no data to import"


After lots of looking around with the online support guys it turned out that it was IE8 that was blocking the function.  In case you run into this here is the solution:


• In Internet Explorer click Tools --> Internet Options.
• Click Security --> click sites --> and add this URLs https://*.emea.microsoftonline.com  and https://*.microsoftonline.com 



I'm hoping to post some articles on branding and building web applications using BPOS SharePoint soon.


Comments (16)

  1. Anonymous says:

    You saved me from big trouble. Thanks a lot !

  2. Anonymous says:

    My lowest security setting that is available is medium-low.  Is that why I am still getting this error?  What about the data and the columns.  Is there a special requirement for it be imported?  Like do certain columns have to exist?

  3. Janet Phan says:

    I'm still having problems importing a spreadsheet after adding the links you mentioned above. I am using IE8. Can you help me troubleshoot?


  4. Veronique Palmer says:

    That doesn't work.  When adding it, the message is "sites added to this zone must have https in the prefix".  My hosted site does not have that.

    I overwrote it by unticking the "require server verification https for all sites in this zone".  

    It then allowed me to open the spreadsheet to choose the bits to import, but as soon as you click on ok, it gives an error message "method post of object IOWSPostData failed".

    I am using IE8 and Office 2007 and SharePoint Foundation (WSS4.0).  I've tried saving the spreadsheet in 2007 as well as in 2003, not working.

    This all used to work, one day I could import a spreadsheet, the next day I couldn't.  Very frustrating.

  5. Mark says:

    Veronique – this was happening to me as well, I had to lower the security level for trusted sites from medium to low and it worked.

  6. That was Easy says:

    I feel like a STAPLES ad…but that saved me big time.


  7. Phil says:

    I just added my Sharepoint site as the local intranet in security and viola!

  8. Rosalyn says:

    Wow is was a site security issue. I add sharepoint as an intranet and site permission issue went away.

  9. Trib says:

    I tried this and it didnt work. Then I used the specific web address i was using to access Sharepoint and added it to the trusted sites and it worked.


  10. Brutalraw says:

    After spending a few hours trying to work out what the hell was going on i stumbled across this very helpful you saved my Bacon today! Thank you very much for blogging about this.

  11. C# Coder says:

    Thank you very much.. You solved my problem in a minute..

  12. Mell says:

    Thanks this fixed my issue with importing spreadsheet!!! I wish there was a way to convert back to sharepoint 2007!!! the 2010 version is such a pain!

  13. rajesh says:


  14. Prashant Kaushik says:

    If after adding your site as a trusted site is also not working then try the following:
    Focus on section : Security level for this zone(On the Internet Options Security tab window), move the slider down and make it Low and click on Apply or Ok button.
    This worked for me.

  15. D says:

    Thanks! This saved me having to re-enter all my columns. 🙂

  16. Prashant Shrivas says:

    Was very helpful info. Thank you!!!

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