Make a Portable PowerPoint Presentation with Video Links that Play Anywhere

Last Updated Aug 24, 2010 11:46 PM EDT


Has this ever happened to you? You need to make a PowerPoint presentation that includes video or other external documents. You complete the deck, copy it to another PC, and only then find the links are all broken. How do get the videos to play correctly even if you take the PowerPoint on the go?

In a nutshell, the problem is that you've linked to files on your PC's hard drive -- so when the file is copied to another computer to actually play the presentation, the deck looks for an absolute location which no longer exists. What you need is to copy the videos with the PowerPoint deck, and ensure it uses a relative location so everything works as expected.

And it's easier than it sounds. Just do this:

1. Create a folder and call it something like Presentation.

2. Create a subfolder within Presentation and call it Videos.

3. Copy the video files to the Video folder.

4. When you add the video links in PowerPoint, drill into the Videos folder and select the appropriate file.

5. When you copy the completed PowerPoint deck to another PC, take the entire Presentation folder. You might want to just copy it to a flash memory drive, for example.

The bottom line is that you'll want to keep the videos (or other linked documents) in the same relative folder as the PowerPoint deck, and copy the entire parent folder when you take it on the go. If you do that, you'll never have any trouble with broken links to files within a PowerPoint deck again.