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I want to bring an object modeled in one Blender file into another and have the second file reflect changes that are made to that object after I have later edited the first. I have been using File->Link and then selecting the file that contains the object and navigating down to where it is in the "Object" subfile of the Blender file. Then, in order to be able to move the linked object to a different position in the second file, I have to do a "Make Proxy" on it. My problem is that as soon as I do the "Make Proxy" any un-applied modifiers I have put on the original object in the first file are no longer reflected in the linked object. Clearly, I could just apply the modifiers again in the second file or apply them before linking in the first file (that is essentially what I have been doing: after finishing edits in a source file, I duplicate the object and apply the modifiers, taking care to have this duplicate object's name match the one I linked in the second file) but neither of these are the ideal workflow and it seems there must be a better way.

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Place the object in a group (fine for it to be a group of one) in the first file (the one with the object you want to link in) and link that group (instead of the object itself) in the second file. You will be able to move the object around in the second file right away, the un-applied modifiers it had in the first file will still be there, and changes made to the object in the first file later will update in the second file.

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  • $\begingroup$ It also seems you can Link the object directly and then do Make Local and (despite what I originally assumed about this option and some have said in other related questions/answers) it appears the object still updates from the source file i.e. the link isn't completely severed. I certainly don't know what other (perhaps subtle) differences there might be between the strategy in my answer and this Make Local idea. The group-based idea requires one fewer step with each link and it seems to be working in the way I need so I am going to stick with it for now. $\endgroup$ – skumhest Nov 19 '18 at 18:55

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