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Troubleshooting Microsoft PowerPoint

See Also

  • Microsoft Office - Troubleshooting general Microsoft Office problems and links to troubleshooting other Microsoft Office applications


Common Problems and Fixes

Windows only Problems

Embed a Flash movie in PowerPoint

It is possible to embed a flash/shockwave movie/video/animation in PowerPoint, but it will work in the Windows version of PowerPoint ONLY. See:

PowerPoint not showing pictures or videos

Symptom: You see the message "QuickTime and a <codec name> decompressor are needed to see this picture"

Solution: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/278556/en-us and http://support.microsoft.com/kb/198202/en-us

Symptom: QuickTime(TM) and a Photo - JPEG decompressor are needed to see this picture. QuickTime(TM) and a TIFF decompressor are needed to see this picture.

Solution: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=198204

Note: It is unclear if Office 2007 resolves this problem.

Video inserted in PowerPoint not playing smoothly

There can be a number of reasons for videos in powerpoint not playing smoothly, ranging from quality of video, to computer speed, and software version. Here are steps to troubleshoot.

  • If your video is not running smoothly, try turning your hardware acceleration down. If you use Windows 2000 or XP, then Right click the Windows desktop and choose Properties > Settings > Advanced. Click on the Troubleshoot tab and move the slider towards the left.
  • If your Media file does not play or a blank box appears on the slide where you inserted the media file, rename the media file to a shorter file name so that the whole path and file name is not longer than 128 characters.
  • It is always recommended to have the latest version of DirectX and Windows Media player installed for high quality presentations.
  • More tips and suggestions can be found here.

Insert More Than One Audio File (Mac)

PowerPoint X and 2004: Insert => Sound from File. Can only do 1 sound file, but can have multiple sound files inserted as movie files (Insert => Movie from File) Have 1st sound file play automatically. PowerPoint 2008 has no limitations to the number of sound files inserted, so you don't need to insert the second sound file as movie.

Tutorial on how to adjust so the sound file plays continuously: http://www.royaltyfreemusic.com/tutorials/powerpoint.htm

PowerPoint freezes when I click on a link

Powerpoint, both on a PC and on a Mac, when clicking on a link to a larger file (avi, wmv, mov, mp3, etc), seemingly freezes.

What is actually happening, is that PowerPoint is downloading parts of the file at the link and examining/testing it. While this test is happening, Powerpoint stops all other actions so you can't advance slides, etc. On a slowe(er) internet connection or when accessing a file at a slower website, this can make it seem like it's frozen. It does eventually open the linked file.

There appears to be nothing we can do to ammend this. A workaround is to save the files that you'd like to link to on the computer, and link to them from the computer.

Cannot edit PowerPoint presentation

Check to make the sure has a .ppt file extension. If the file is a .pps (Powerpoint Show), it is considered read-only by PowerPoint and you won't be able to edit it. If you simply change the extension to .ppt it becomes an editable Powerpoint file.

See also

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