Object Linking and Embedding. OLE is a Microsoft protocol that connects objects from other applications with a document. An embedded object becomes part of the document. A linked file allows the object to be edited in its original application; it is then updated in the document to which it is linked. For example, OLE allows a user to embed a spreadsheet within a word processing document. If the user later needs to edit the numbers, the spreadsheet application can be launched from within the word processing application.