Thursday 23 August 2007

PowerPoint 2007 - Still buggy?!? - Slideshow Hangs...

We were requested to put together a slide show for a client. We decided to take PowerPoint 2007 for a test drive.

We ended up with a 25 panel slide show with multiple images and themes. We created a soundtrack for it on the Mac that ran the entire duration of the slide show.

We set the transition times for every panel to 15 seconds. We set the proper animation sequences for all of the panels and away we go right?

After saving the presentation in both presentation and slide show format, we took it for a test run.

Well, the first slide shows up, the music starts, then the second slide comes in 15 seconds later as expected. Then, it just hangs there. The slides no longer change. The second slide just sits there. The music keeps running though.

Okay, go back into the presentation, change the order of the slides to see if it is that particular slide, regenerate the slide show and try again.

Nope. It didn't work. Build a whole new slide? Nope, same thing happens again.

We still had a hang at the second slide.

So, the next step was to go back and see what happened to the transition settings. Each panel was still showing the 15 second transition time with the exception of the second one. It had 456:30:00 as a time setting!

Um, just where did that come from?

So, reset all of the panels to a transition time of 15 seconds, regenerate the slide show, and sure enough, it worked.

This was not an isolated incident. That 456:30:00 number showed up again, randomly, over the process of building the entire slide show.

Buried somewhere in PowerPoint, is that strange time number that only shows itself occasionally.

So, we learned a valuable lesson. Make sure that slide show works as expected before sending it off to the client.

Oh, and the soundtrack will, by default, be linked in the presentation so one should make sure to have the soundtrack mp3 accompany the final slideshow.pps or slideshow.ppsx.

By the way, the end user does not need to have PowerPoint installed on their system to run the slide show. They only need the PowerPoint Viewer. It can be found here: PowerPoint Viewer Download.

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists

*All Mac on SBS posts are posted on our in-house iMac via the Safari Web browser.

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