Due to a security vulnerability, the ability to insert FBX files has been disabled in Word, Excel, PowerPoint for Windows and Mac, and Outlook for Windows. The Office versions that had this feature enabled will no longer have access to it. This includes Office 2019, Office 2021, Office LTSC for Mac 2021, and Microsoft 365.
3D models in Office documents that were previously inserted from an FBX file will continue to work as expected unless the "Link to File" option was chosen at the insert time.
This change is effective as of the January 9, 2024, security update.
Changes beginning in January 2024
Early January 2024, the support for FBX will be turned off, by default.
When you try to insert an FBX file into Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook, you will see the following error: “An error occurred while importing this file.”
The 3D model will not be inserted into the Office document.
Substitutes for FBX files
GLB (Binary GL Transmission Format) is the recommended substitute 3D file format for use in Office.
The glTF or GL Transmission Format is the open-source 3D file format used by Office to store and render all 3D models. Many different 3D file formats can be imported and are automatically converted to glTF before rendering in Office. GLB is the binary version of glTF, which allows you to store complex 3D assets in a single file for maximum portability. GLB is the recommended 3D format for Office.
For more information on Office best practices for 3D formats, see 3D Content Guidelines for Microsoft - Microsoft Support.
Can I still use FBX files in Office?
Although we strongly recommend against it, you can insert FBX files for Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. It is important to be aware that making this change can increase your vulnerability to malicious code. Before you make these changes, we recommend that you evaluate the risks that are associated with implementing this workaround in your particular environment. If you implement this workaround, take any appropriate additional steps to help protect the computer.
Using FBX files in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook on Windows
These instructions involve making changes to the Windows registry. If you make the change to the registry, you can insert FBX files in the application on which you have applied the registry change. The FBX files will be automatically converted to GLB format, saved, and visible in the saved document, even by the people who haven't performed the registry change.
To enable FBX, follow the steps below:
Find the following registry subkey:
This represents the list of 3D file formats that are disabled.
Remove “fbx” from the value data string.
Restart Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook for the change to take effect.
Note: If your machine is managed by Group Policy settings, you may need to work with your system admin to ensure that the value is not reset by a Group Policy setting.
Using FBX files in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint on Mac
These instructions involve updating preference settings that are CFPreferences API compatible and can be set using the defaults command in Terminal or enforced through a Configuration Profile or Mobile Device Management (MDM) server. When the preferences are enforced, the user cannot change the values, and any in-app controls will appear disabled.
This article can be used as a reference for updating preference settings in Office: Use preferences to manage privacy controls for Office for Mac - Deploy Office | Microsoft Learn
To enable FBX, use the “3DModelBlockExtList” preference key. Similar to the Windows registry settings steps above, this preference is a string data type that will include “fbx” when the format is disabled. Setting the key to an empty string will enable fbx.
Here’s one way to update the setting:
defaults write com.microsoft.office 3DModelBlockExtList -string ""
The key can also be deleted using the following command:
defaults delete com.microsoft.office 3DModelBlockExtList
Note: When the 3DModelBlockExtList preference key is not present or null, fbx will be in the disabled state.