Transferring from Mac to PC PowerPoint

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A common problem when working between the Mac and Windows version of PowerPoint is when the file is created on the Mac version, and it fails to load images in the Windows version. Instead of images, you'll see black rectangles. This can even happen when opening the presentation on a different Mac.

To fix this, you must add images to the PowerPoint presentation without using drag and drop. Follow the instructions below:

  • If the image is on a web page, save it to your computer first
  • If the image is from another PowerPoint presentation, do the same. You can right-click the image and choose "Save Picture"
  • In PowerPoint choose Insert > Picture > From File...
  • Now navigate to the location of the image in the open panel, and select the image by clicking the Insert button

This will save the image inside the PowerPoint file. When you open it on a Windows machine, or another Mac, the pictures should display properly.

Note that the problem will even occur if you drag a PowerPoint slide, from a different presentation, into your current one.

This is true for the 2004 version of PowerPoint. It has apparently been fixed in Service Pack 1 for Office 2008, but PowerPoint presentations created in PowerPoint 2004 will exhibit this problem, even when opened in newer versions of PowerPoint on a Mac, unless you avoided dragging pictures or slides into your presentation, as described here.