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  1. #1
    Star Lounger Roderick's Avatar
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    My operating system is Vista Home Premium

    Last summer my wife and I went to Israel and in the fall I created a PowerPoint slide program of our pictures as a memento of our trip. I am using PowerPoint 2003 SP3. The slideshow includes audio clips recorded on the trip and music background for much of the program. This is a large PowerPoint of 200 MB and just over 400 slides (runs for two hours!) With the exception of a couple of embedded sound effects, all the sounds link to MP3 sound files in a sub-directory “Sound Files” in the folder where the PowerPoint PPT file is located.

    Everything was working fine. Recently however I went to run the PowerPoint file on my computer and the audio (other than the embedded sound effects) would not play. In SlideShow mode it’s supposed to play automatically when the slide appears. When I open the PowerPoint in edit mode and double-click the speaker icon on a slide, it should play the sound file, however I got a popup Media Player message "Windows Media Player cannot find the file. If you are trying to play, burn, or sync an item that is in your library, the item might point to a file that has been moved, renamed, or deleted." The files are all there and no file names were changed.

    On one of the slides with a sound file, I brought up the "Play Sound" dialog window and the Sound Settings tab. The playing time is showing as 56:31:24. Don’t know where that came from. This same time appears for every sound file in the PowerPoint that won’t play. The correct playing time for the first file is 01:46. (It is showing the correct path to the sound file.)

    I checked Woody’s Lounge for this problem and found one HERE that sounded a bit similar (although a different error.) A response indicated that iTunes might have caused the problem. I’m wondering if maybe that might have screwed up my PowerPoint? I got an iPod for Christmas and of course had to install iTunes in order to use it. That was done after the last time I know the PowerPoint was working properly.



    OK, in the mean time I figured maybe all I had to do was go through the slides again and fix the 45 sound links. This wasn’t as big a job as it might sound – completed in one evening. Didn’t take long to insert a new sound file and delete the old one. (Yes, I made a copy of the PowerPoint first in case this screwed up so I have both the old non-working one and a new “almost” working one ... see next paragraph!)

    However (there’s always a “however”) it didn’t quite go perfectly. Forty-two sound files relinked properly. But on three slides the sound still won’t work. Each of these slides has a link to an MP3 file in the same sub-folder. The MP3 sound files play fine in Media Player when I double click on them in the sub-folder. When I double click the speaker icon on the slide, nothing happens, no sound, no error message. When I look at the Sound Settings tab it is showing with the correct playing time and path to the file.

    My sound files are all MP3, they all play properly when opened individually, they were all inserted in the slides in exactly the same way, I don’t understand why 42 work and 3 don’t.

    In order to try another approach, I created a new test PowerPoint with only 5 slides. I inserted a known working sound file on the first slide, then the 3 problem sound files on the next 3 slides, finally another known working one on the last slide. When I ran this in SlideShow mode, the sounds worked properly on the first and last slides but the other 3 didn't work. So that's telling me it must be something to do with the sound file.

    OK, that doesn't make any sense, but I try to eliminate possibilities so I copy the 3 problem sound files out to the desktop. Now I go back to my test PowerPoint, delete the 3 that weren't working, and reinsert them again using the copies I placed on the desktop. This time when I run SlideShow the sound files play perfectly. So I think, let's just play this game a little further and see what happens. I temporarily changed the file names of the 3 files in the Sound Files folder, then I copied the ones from the desktop back into this folder. Then went back to the test PowerPoint and changed to these new copies. This time again they did not work.

    So what have I proven? I have absolutely no idea at this point. I have 42 sound files that work when linked from this Sound Files folder, but 3 do not. However the 3 will work from another location outside that folder.



    (Incidentally, when I originally made the PowerPoint, I used the "Package to CD" to make some CD's so I do have fully working copies on CD but would like to figure out how to fix my original copy on my computer.)

    Rod Corkum

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Do the sound files work if you place them in the same folder as the presentation instead of in a subfolder?

  3. #3
    Star Lounger Roderick's Avatar
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    [quote name='HansV' post='772443' date='27-Apr-2009 02:35']Do the sound files work if you place them in the same folder as the presentation instead of in a subfolder?[/quote]

    Thanks, Hans, for the tip.

    I'd tried everything else but somehow that hadn't occurred to me. I just tried it and it does work that way. But I have to say that I don't understand the logic of why these three files won't work the same as all the rest anymore (they did originally.) I had put the sound files all in a sub folder thinking I was keeping things neat and not cluttering up the main folder where the PowerPoint is.

    I hadn't mentioned in the previous post but thinking there may have been some corruption to the file, I had gone back to the web site where the original on location recordings are kept as a podcast and downloaded and recreated one of the files and put it back in the Sound Files folder. That one didn't work either.

    Rod Corkum

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger
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    PowerPoint can ALWAYS find linked files such as sound files if they're in the same folder as the PowerPoint presentation itself, regardless of the path of the folder.

    Perhaps the length of the full path including the filename of the problem files in the subfolder was too long - there is a limit to the total length.

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