How to Create a Visio Network Diagram From a Spreadsheet
By Janice Uwujaren
You have an Excel spreadsheet with lines of data about your network. You would like to represent this information visually using a Visio network diagram without having to recreate the information. As daunting as this task may sound, it is possible to create a detailed network diagram in Visio using data contained in an Excel spreadsheet. The trick lies in importing the data using Microsoft Excel Worksheet as the data source and linking the imported data elements to shapes in Visio. Visio uses this information to automate the alignment of data in the Excel spreadsheet to matching shapes in the network diagram – making the process quick and effortless.
Create the Network Diagram in Visio
Select the “Network” template category from the “New” menu in Visio. Click on “Detailed Network Diagram” template and click on “Create” to confirm your selection.
Drag an applicable network type under “Network and Peripherals” heading to the drawing area.
Drag network devices from the “Computers and Monitors” or “Network and Peripherals” headings to the drawing area. Use the built-in arrow connectors of the network type you selected to link the devices to the network.
Import the Excel Data
Select “Link Data to Shape” from the “Data” menu in Visio. In the “Data Selector” wizard, accept the default option of “Microsoft Excel Worksheet” by clicking “Next.”
Click the “Browse” button to select the workbook that contains the excel data from your computer and click “Next”.
Select the appropriate range of data from the workbook and click “Next”. Select the default options for all columns and rows and click “Next”.
Check the box next to the column in the worksheet that uniquely identifies your network assets and click “Finish”
Link Excel Data Automatically to Visio Shapes
Select “Automatically Link” from the “Data” menu in Visio.
In the “Automatically Link” wizard, accept the default option to automatically link to “All shapes on this page” by clicking “Next.”
Accept the default values or select the appropriate data column and shape fields that must be equal for the link to take place. Click the “Finish” button to confirm settings.
- Create a legend by dragging the legend shape under “Network and Peripherals” to the drawing area. You can make changes to the configuration of the legend, by right-clicking on the image of the legend and selecting “Configure Legend”. Additionally, you can edit the text within the legend by clicking on the text you would like to change and typing the new information.
Janice Uwujaren has been writing professionally since 1996. Her articles have been published on various websites. Her experience includes developing content for proposals, websites, training materials and technical documentation. Uwujaren has a Bachelor of Science in computer information systems from Strayer University.