External database driver error with Excel file in ModelBuilder or SCADAConnect

Product(s): WaterCAD, WaterGEMS, StormCAD, SewerCAD, SewerGEMS, CivilStorm
Version(s): 08.09.XX.XX, 08.11.XX.XX, 10.00.00.XX
Area: Layout and Data Input


When attempting to connect to an Excel spreadsheet file in ModelBuilder or SCADAConnect, the following error occurs:

ModelBuilder: Error: Unexpected error from external database driver (1)

SCADAConnect: Error: An error occurred in the external database driver


This issue can occur due to a Microsoft Update to the JET 4.0 Operating System component, which breaks some older Office data source type connections:

Windows 10: KB4041676
Windows 8: KB4041693
Windows 7: KB4041681

To determine if you have this update installed, navigate to the "Programs and Features" section of Windows (in recent versions of Windows 10 a link to this is found on the right side of "Apps & Features"), then click "view installed updates" on the left side and search for the above KB number.

In particular, this would impact the ability to connect to an Excel 8.0 (.XLS) format file when using the 32-bit version of the OpenFlows product. The 32-bit version would be used if you are using the "...for MicroStation" or "...for ArcMap" integrated versions, or when using the 32-bit version of Standalone by way of opening the executable file stored in the root of the installation folder. (or if you're on a 32-bit Operating System) By default, the Standalone version shortcut will point to the 64-bit version of the software, which is the executable file in the "x64" subfolder within the installation folder.

Note: if the above is not the case, you may have encountered another issue related to a Windows update involving the Access Database Engine component - see further below.

There are a few ways to resolve this issue:

1) Open the 64-bit version of the software, which should not have this problem.

2) Uninstall the offending update (as listed above).

3) Use a different data source type. For example save the XLS file to the newer XLSX (Excel 12.0) format if possible, which should not have the problem.

4) A fix for this issue (Reference # 767681) is planned to be included starting with the CONNECT Edition Update 1 release ( When this version is available, the other solution would be to upgrade.

If you are using ModelBuilder with the MicroStation or ArcMap integrated version of the software, you can open the 64-bit Standalone version as mentioned above, import the data, save the model, then reopen it in the integrated platform. If you are using SCADAConnect in the MicroStation or ArcMap integrated version, you'll need to uninstall the offending update, use a different data source type/format, or wait for a future release with a fix.

If you encounter an error when attempting to use ModelBuilder or SCADAConnect in the 64-bit version of the product, indicating that "Microsoft Access Database Engine 2010 64-bit is required to access this Data Source type", then you will need to install the 64-bit Access Database Engine (this is a small prerequisite, not an Office product), downloadable from Microsoft (see possible link below). If you already have the 32-bit Access database engine installed, you will need to uninstall that first, then install the 64-bit version, then reinstall the 32-bit version. More background on that can be found in the article below.

Access Database Engine Update

This situation can also occur with a Windows Update related to the Microsoft Access Database Engine (ADE) component required for OpenFlows products to work with Excel and Access data sources. In this case, please check the installed version(s) of the Access Database Engine and fix as needed, per the following article: "External component..." error in ModelBuilder or SCADAConnect

See Also

ModelBuilder/SCADAConnect error: Microsoft Access Database Engine 2010 64-bit is required to access this data source

Microsoft Access Database Engine 2010 Redistributable