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Custom Shows In MS PowerPoint

Friday, November 19th, 2004 by | Filed Under: MS PowerPoint

Custom Shows In MS PowerPoint

Well, if you’ve come this far than you’ve decided that MS PowerPoint’s custom shows might be the thing for you and I bet you’re ready to dig right in.

So let’s get to it.

The first thing you need to do is to open your presentation.

Now you’re looking for the Slide Show menu, Custom Shows choice. (Alt then D then C will get you there too.)

The Custom Shows window will open allowing you to Edit, Copy and Remove an existing custom show or to create a New show.


(You also might want to notice the Show button in the bottom right corner. This allows you to view your custom shows—a good thing if you have quite a few created and you’re naming system just isn’t working for you anymore!)

At any rate, to create a custom show click the New button.

The new window that opens is for defining the custom show.


At the top you should name your show. Be sure to use a name that will make sense later—useless names will make your life more difficult in the future.

On the left side of the window in the “Slides in presentation:” list you can choose the slides to be included. Simply click on the slide(s) to be included. (To select multiple slides you can use the old Shift or Ctrl key standbys.)

When you think you’re ready click the Add button in the middle.

The slide names will be moved to the “Slides in custom show:” list on the right.

If you forgot a slide then select it and Add again.

Should you find that a slide in the custom show doesn’t belong there then select it and click the Remove button.

The next step will be to put the slides in the correct order.

On the very far right of the window you should have noticed the up and down arrows.

You can use these to move a selected slide up or down the list one place at a time.

When you have every thing in its place click OK.

You’ll be returned to the Custom Shows window where you will click Close to return to your presentation.

So, we’re most of the way there—you can make a custom show of your master presentation including only the slides needed for your current audience.

But I bet by now you’re wondering how you’re going to show this custom show to them—after all, you were just returned to the complete presentation and if you start the slide show you will see all slides. (Defeats the whole purpose, doesn’t it?)

The question begs to be asked: “How do we present only a custom show?”

Good question—and I’ve got a good (and quick) answer.

You need to go to the “Set Up Show” window.

(Try the Slide Show menu, Set Up Show choice.)

In this window you’re looking for the Slides section. (In the middle on PowerPoint 97 and on the right in newer versions.)


Select the Custom Show choice and use the pull-down list to find the one you need.

Set any other preferences as necessary and click OK.

Now play the show.

Much better!

Only those slides in the custom show are displayed.

Wondering about handouts?

Same deal.

In the Print dialogue window (File menu, Print choice or Ctrl + P) choose Custom Show in the Print range list and use the drop-down list to get the right one.

Then continue with your handout printing as usual.

Never fear, a cure for those hide/unhide nightmares is here.

~ April

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