OP when you highlight the frustrating XREF in the list, does a litlte message display at the bottom, saying "This is a nested XREF..."? If so, try opening the non-nested XREFs one by one and see if any of them have the same XREF. One is bound to have it non-nested, as an attachment (as opposed to an overlay).
Bear with me, I recreated the problem for you, and should be able to help if I fully understand the issue. See picture after you read the body of the response.
If your problem is the Excel files, than you're going to have to launch the Data Link Manager. The ./ you are seeing is a just a destination designation shortcut for the CAD file's root project folder. So if I had a file in C://user/projects/buildings/2013/new/cad/ called test.dwg, and I had an Excel file in the same folder named foo.xls, than its properties in the xref palette might just say ./cad. It all depends on the relationship of the location of the excel file you have and the dwg that is referencing that data link.
Now, to fix this problem. Launch your Data Link Manager and edit the path of the Excel file manually by browsing for it. If your Data Link Manager looks like mine, than the following will work.
It goes like this:
<right click dereferenced file>;
<browse for file>
boom you're done.
If this doesn't solve it, than you will need to redo the excel file and relink it. I deal with data links all day, trust me.
"If your problem is the Excel files, than you're going to have to launch the Data Link Manager. The ./ you are seeing is a just a destination designation shortcut for the CAD file's root project folder."
Yeah, I know a bit of Unix. so I assumed that the ".\" is just Microsoftish for "./" Thanks for the tip for the Data Link Manager; I didn't know about that one.
To answer another comment, the only reason I am not using the LIST command is that I do not know what it is or does (I can find out pretty easily, though, now that I know what to look for). Have I mentioned that there are gaping holes in my knowledge of AutoCAD? ;^)
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