How to convert PowerPoint to DVD for free

PPT to DVDThis posting will outline a number of options for converting a PowerPoint presentation to DVD using all free software. There is not a single free app that will do this; however there are three “routes” illustrated below that you could take to achieve PowerPoint to DVD conversion using all free apps. Here’s a quick summary:

Notes:

  • All of the methods described here require that PowerPoint be installed on your machine.
  • While I use PPT to refer to PowerPoint files you could in fact convert any PowerPoint file extension that your version of PowerPoint supports (e.g. PPS, or PPTS, PPTM, etc. if using PowerPoint 2007).
  • It took a while to research and write this post so if you like this post please Digg or Stumble it.

I am going to segment the process of converting a PowerPoint file into 2 parts: (1) capturing the visual part of the presentation, and (2) packaging it into a DVD.


PART ONE: capturing the “visual” part of the presentation.

There are a number of ways to do this using the following free programs:
The free version of this program will convert your PowerPoint presentation into a video file, and can output to a good variety of video formats (e.g. WMV, AVI, MPG; it can even output to BMP images).
The program works by “virtually” opening your presentation using PowerPoint, and recording the output to video. This program will let you specify (a) the size of the desired output video from a good number of options; (b) whether you want an auto transition between slides or the option to manually go through the presentation and record; and (c) if auto transition, how many seconds to display each slide. It will also let you specify an audio file to use with your video or if recording your presentation manually will also allow you to alternately record an audio/commentary track using a microphone (note: this function is actually available inside PowerPoint). More notes:

 

  • Experiment first to see if everything works out as you want it to; note that in testing this application I have encountered instances where a visual element in the original presentation is incorrectly placed in the output video.
  • This program installs a media player and DVD burner in the program directory, and these cannot be uninstalled seperately. The DVD burner component, moreover, requires VOB or MPG files as inputs to author a DVD, but refused to burn my resulting presentations when I converted them to MPG.
  • Burning to DVD: see “DVD Flick” in “Part2 below – Packaging the presentation to DVD”.

iSpring Screenshot 2. PPT to SWF: iSpring Converter Free . This is a powerful free PowerPoint extension that can convert PowerPoint files to flash (SWF) files. Some notes on this one:

  • Output: the resulting SWF file when I tested this program was 720×526 in resolution ; it did not offer me any resize options. iSpring will preserve all animations, transition effects, sounds, and videos that may be in the PPT file but will not capture any rehearsed narration that may have been saved into the PPT file (this is available in the paid version only).
  • HTML/Player: iSpring will also generate an HTML page that incorporates a player to play the converted SWF within your browser (or, alternately, uploaded and played from a web site).
  • iSpring Screenshot - auto Settings / auto play: if you plan to eventually convert your SWF to a video file (AVI) in an automated fashion using a SWF to video converter, in the “Publish” settings, make sure to check “change all slides automatically” and “auto-play on-click animations”. This will ensure that your resulting SWF file plays continuously and does not wait for user input to advance (and therefore behaves like a video rather than being interactive).
  • iSpring Screenshot - manual Settings / manual play: if you plan to convert your SWF to a video file (AVI) using a screen recording program and would like to set the pace/speed of the presentation manually, uncheck “change all slides automatically” and “auto-play on-click animations”. This will give you on-click control over animation events and slide transitions.
  • If you’ve not sure what I mean by the “settings” above, see the “SWF to AVI” sections (2a) and (2b) in Part 2 below.

PowerPoint Image Copier Screenshot 3. PPT to JPG: PowerPoint Image Copier . This little free gem will process a PowerPoint file and output each slide and/or animation event as a series of JPG’s.

So, for example, a slide with 2 animation events (say click: get a bullet point, and then click: a chart flies in) will output 3 jpg’s with PowerPoint Image Copier (the initial slide with just the title, the slide with the bullet point displayed, and the slide with the bullet point and chart together).

This program is a small, no-install program that is able to capture all of the visual content of a PowerPoint presentation as distinct JPG images; on the other hand it will not capture any animations or transitions that may have been used and certainly not any sound or narration.

PowerPoint Image Copier works in a rather quirky way: it will open your PowerPoint presentation using PowerPoint in full-screen mode and then proceed to scroll through all the slides and events and take snapshots of them. However, any on-screen events that may occur during this process will also be captured (for example your IM client window suddenly popping up on-screen, etc.) – so make sure to have a controlled environment where nothing else is going to interrupt the on-screen activity.


Part TWO: packaging the presentation to DVD.

This section will discuss how to burn your resulting video file, your SWF file, or JPEGs to DVDs that can be played on any standalone DVD player. DVD Flick Screenshot

1. AVI to DVD: DVD Flick DVD Flick is a free DVD authoring program that can use videos from a wide variety of formats as input and burn DVDs that will run on any DVD player, Once you have your PowerPoint file converted to video you can use any of a great many freeware programs to author a DVD, but DVD Flick is my favorite. Some notes:
  • Ease of use: this program is extremely easy to use; all you have to do is add your converted videos (accepts many formats), title your project, and change any settings that you want (including picking a display template for the main menu, see below). Note that the program will use the names of the files you use as titles for the eventual videos on your DVD, so you might want to rename these appropriately before adding them to DVD Flick.
  • DVD Flick - converted PPT files on DVD Templates: offers a number of pre-existing templates that you can use for your projects that will instantly give your presentations a professional look (see an example in the screenshot to the right). I will not write much more about this program here since my link above points to a full review that of that program.
  • HD space requirement: might require a great many gigs of free space on your hard drive to do it’s thing.

CamStudio Screenshot - recording from SWF 2a. SWF to AVI: CamStudio, Debut Video Recorder, Speedy Video Capture (portable). These are free screen recording programs that will capture any screen activity and record any sound input coming through the mic jack.

Any of these programs will allow you plug in a microphone, hone in on a part of the screen and play the SWF that you got using your browser or your media player and advance through the presentation in real-time, recording your narration as you go along. (Note that you do not have to add narration if you prefer not to).

I would strongly recommend using a screen capture program (a) if you want a “human” element to your PowerPoint video where the slides aren’t just advancing robotically at a fixed pace, and/or (b) if you want to add narration. If you do want to go manually go through your presentation and record it make sure that your generated SWF allows you to do so manually (see settings/manual play in the iSpring section above).

Lastly, you might ask: if I were going to do screen recording why bother with the SWF at all, why not just do it straight out of PowerPoint? The answer to that question is that PowerPoint will run presentations full-screen only, which makes capturing rather unwieldy and complicated and will result in output files with enormous sizes. Playing and recording the SWF file is much more practical. Other notes:

  • Make sure to create a controlled environment where unwanted on-screen activity such as email/IM notifications or anything else are not going to occur. Also be mindful where you place your mouse.
  • If you do not want audio you can switch it off using the screen recording program.
  • It doesn’t matter which codecs you use to encode, since the DVD authoring program will re-encode anyway. If in doubt download, install, and use CamStudio lossless codec from the CamStudio page or Xvid (or even go with uncompressed, although that will take a good chunk of disk space depending on the length and size of your presentations).

Finally, to put your AVI’s on DVD I recommend DVD Flick. See the AVI to DVD / DVD Flick section above.

SWF2AVI screenshot 2a. SWF to AVI: SWF2AVI SWF2AVI is a little freeware tool that converts SWF files to AVI or bitmap-sequences (bmp, jpg).

It is a rather capable little app but it does NOT support sound, so if sound is an important component of your presentation you might want to use the screen recording options described in 2b above Converting SWF to AVI turned out to be more involved than I thought. I initially turned to SUPER, which is one of the most powerful freeware video conversion programs that supports SWF to AVI, but for some reason that did not work out for the SWF I got with iSpring. I found a couple of others but SWF2AVI was the best in terms of getting results. Here’s a quick overview of how to perform a SWF to AVI conversion:

  • Find the SWF file from iSpring.
  • Download Swifty Compress and Decompress. You need this app to decompress the SWF file. Unzip the archive and drag and drop your SWF file onto the “swfdecomp.exe” icon. Your SWF file size will increase, and that is all you will see.
  • Load your SWF file in SWF2AVI. If it works, you’re done – ready for the last step, DVD authoring. If you get an error message, however, read on.
  • From the extras menu, choose “Auto Wrap Move (build container movie) and point to your SWF file. When it asks “How many frames do you want to convert” enter a very high value, such as 9999.
  • Go to Extras then preferences and make sure BMP is checked (not JPG).
  • SWF2AVI screenshot - stop proessNext go back to SWF2AVI and open the new container movie. This will begin the process of extracting the SWF file into a bitmap sequence. Important: monitor the conversion process and once it gets to the end click on “stop process”. If you don’t do this the process will go on for very very long time with the last frame of your SWF being copied over and over.
  • Go to Extras/Convert Image sequence to AVI. The images you want to add should be in the same folder as your SWF file. Make sure list of files is sequential (click ‘Sort File List’). Note the frames per second; experiment with this one, as entering smaller values creates a slower, longer AVI.
  • Click “Write AVI”, select a codec from the dropdown (or choose Full Frames Uncompressed), aand click ok. Your AVI format video will now be created in the original SWF directory.

More Notes:

DVD Slideshow GUI screenshot 3. JPG to DVD: DVD Slideshow GUI DVD Slideshow GUI is a free tool that can create sophisticated slideshows out of groups of images. It can add text, animations, audio, and transition effects to images and burn the resulting slideshow to a DVD that will play on any standalone player.

If you used “PowerPoint Image Copier” above to grab your PowerPoint slides and convert them to images, you can use DVD Slideshow GUI to add any display effects and burn to DVD. Some notes:

  • Can be used in a simple way to dump your converted PowerPoint slides into and burn, or otherwise you can give each slide individualized attention (duration, effects, etc)
  • Has a handy preview function to display the slideshow before burning to DVD.
  • If you don’t like the default background and would prefer simply a black one (like I do), you can change it in the project settings. You can also remove the so-called “safe area”.
  • Once you are satisfied with your slides one click will get the slideshow burned to DVD for you.

 

 


 
 
 
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Samer Kurdi

Samer Kurdi

Has been reviewing software since 2006 when he started Freewaregenius.com
Samer Kurdi
Dec 17, 2008
Samer Kurdi
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  • Fred Thompson

    This is something I’ve done for years. PowerPoint can be considered the “poor man’s” video editor, of sorts. If your presentation is fully linear, this is what I found to work the best:

    Edit any embedded videos so they run at 1/10 the normal rate. This means you’ll have to duplicate frames because PowerPoint won’t play non-video frame rates well at all. (For that matter, PowerPoint uses a veeeeery old method of video playback but that’s another issue.) Change your screen resolution to 800×600 and use a lossless video codec to capture the presentation. Load the captured video into VirtualDub. Manually remove the static image and temporary pause from each slide with video. Use the decimate function to remove 9 of every 10 frames. Use the Smart Resize filter to resize to 740×480 (if NTSC) and save the file. Author like any other video file.

    Why 800×600? Because video pixels aren’t square. If you capture at 640×480, you’ll lose horizontal quality.

    Why lossless capture? Because video out to a camcorder or a lossy codec removes detail.

    I prefer to save as 4:2:2 MPEG by TMPGEnc. It’s a little drop in horizontal color but usually not visible to most people. I also encode to FLV for computer playback because MPEG is almost always restricted to the analog “safe” color model which doesn’t allow pure white or pure black.

    You can see some examples of this method on my commercial website http://www.CorrugatedMachines.com

    FWIW, I also use Flash Video MX to make the FLV files because you can specify the frequency of key frame (very important if you want to navigate the video segment) and it uses the Sorensen encoder. SUPER, MediaCoder and almost every other free encoder either don’t let you specify the key frame frequency or use a cruddy encoder like ffmpeg.

  • Fred Thompson

    Oops, forgot to say:

    I also like FLV Player 1.6.0 http://flv-player.net/ for playback. It does everything I want for free EXCEPT the time counter is odd. I’d prefer it show current and total time and also be on the extreme right of the control bar.

    This is a better URL to demonstrate: http://www.corrugatedmachines.com/Details/index.htm

    Photobook was made with a custom JAlbum template.

  • Samer

    @Fred,
    Thanks for sharing this terrific info!

  • SwampCat

    Hi Guys,

    My apology for language imperfections.

    First, special thanks to Samer.
    I am visiting here quite regularly & there are many helpful Software and a lot of information, which fits different tastes. But this description or “presentation about presentation” is really excellent.

    It gives the beginners and even users with some experience more than just concise info but whole picture of a process and very good start point for digging deeper into this kind of work to be accomplished.

    Sure as it was said above special thanks to Fred Thompson for his valuable input.
    The only small thing to comment would be
    <>.
    Well, Yes and No. Probably it is not the best Software for creating presentations. It is enough for many, who would use it for quite simple stuff. At the same time if you dive into and know all features, macroces (VBA) and so on you can develop pretty complicated and “exciting” things.
    But that is where most conversion Tools like iSpring will fail. I have to admit though that I tried it a while ago and need updating to the latest version. I was even contacting iSpring developers. Many things there should & could be improved. It will certainly do the job with Presentations having basic simple animations/effects etc. but not more than that. One of the big problems with all such converters would be interactive stuff you may include in PowerPoint.

    Other than that …Thanks again and best wishes to all!

  • vikram

    Thanks Samer. I am over to view your page quite frequently, and the knowledge-add I have had from your insights is really great. Thumbs Up.

  • SwampCat

    in addition to the above:
    Sorry, somehow the quote didn’t go there properly
    What I was commenting was:
    PowerPoint can be considered the “poor man’s” video editor, of sorts
    … than goes Yes & No

    Thanks

  • anon

    PowerPoint can save a presentation directly to image files like .jpg. Windows XP can then later burn that presentation to DVD using Windows Movie Maker.

  • tin2tin

    It can also be done without Power Point. Open Office also handles ppt files.

    With this bit of scripting: http://www.oooforum.org/forum/viewtopic.phtml?p=33691#33691
    The ’save as’ .jpg function will save all slides as jpgs.

    And then DVD slideshow GUI can be used to make a dvd out of the slides.

    One major anvantage DVD slideshow GUI has is if you need to do a power point presentation without a computer but instead with a standalone dvd player, and therefore need to advance one slide at a time.

    This can be done by exporting as .gfd in DVD slideshow GUI. This file can then be opened in GUI for dvdauthor(it’s free too). And by authoring and burning you’ll get a dvd with the needed dvd structure for dvd-remote-controlled power point presentation.

    There is a flash tutorial on the DSG and GFD export here: http://download.videohelp.com/tin2tin/GFDexport.html

  • Fred Thompson

    I made a mistake in the earlier comments. Do NOT decimate the captured desktop. Capture at 1/10 normal frame rate. (Most computers can’t capture full frame video at 30 fps) VH Screen Capture Driver http://www.hmelyoff.com/index.php?section=8 and HuffYUV lossless codec (ffdshow) can be used with VirtualDub. OpenOffice has more powerful export options to image files than PowerPOint but neither will work with embedded video or effects, hence my method. I’m actually using the OpenOffice method to export then manually adding code to embed FLV playback in those slides for which video is appropriate. THis is for pure computer playback. My experience is that a long video is very difficult to navigate if you want to discuss/examine a small segment. It’s better for the slide advance to be manually controlled with endlessly looping video for such uses. “Attraction mode” is a little different, though. Linear playback will be just fine for that sort of thing. IN all directness, though, I find DVD to be less and less useful give the cost of computers and bandwidth now. The first link I gave shows my older method of linear capture of a complete presentation. Master slides in PowerPoint come in quite handy to create a theme. My audience is industrial so this works well.

    I’ll be happy to work on a proper “how to” in conjunction with you if you’re interested, Samer.

  • Larry Constantine

    PowerPoint will run a show in a window for direct screen capture. No need to go through .swf. The “Slide Show in a Window” tool is buried in Tools|Customize|Commands|View.

  • Adam Roades

    I’ve created several “videos” using PowerPoint – as the first commenter stated – as my “poor man’s Flash” (though it’s my time that’s poor – I just don’t have time to learn Flash right now!).

    However, the freeware stated here won’t do justice to your slide show if you use overlapping animated features. I really abuse the custom animation feature in PowerPoint and have found that the only product that can successfully convert it is Wondershare’s PPT to WMV (and related products). The cost is marginal, but the output is phenomenal.

  • Doc DeVore

    Why not just use PowerPoint’s built in publishing feature to create the files necessary for CD/DVD distribution and burn the CD/DVD yourself. In PowerPoint 2007 you can even burn more than one presentation, and even give the user the choice of what to run.

  • Robert Tipping

    Thank you Samer for your excellent site I tune in everyday its one of my favorites.
    I am no fan of powerpoint but sticking with the theme of frebie software googles presentation software has to be the simplist on the planet to create and pull down from the cloud anywhare there is an internet connection.
    With all due respect if you are able to bend the parameters of powerpoint(have the intellect)or you can script with VBA you probably shouldn’t be messing around with this very vanilla software(powerpoint)in the first place you are already to brainy and should be able to get round action script in an instant and use decent software where the big kids play(flash).
    Also to the nod of Office 2007 yes we know its capable but this is freeware genius not big bucks genius.

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  • IBLe

    Another way to convert powerpoint presentation to DVD is to upload your PPT file to a free powerpoint hosting site (http://www.authorstream.com) – this site will automatically convert your power point presentation into video format. You can then download the video format of your presentation and burn it to DVD using a DVD authoring tool.
    Here’s the complete guide of the process: http://easydvdburning.com/guides/pc-video-converter/converting-powerpoint-presentation-to-a-dvd.html

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  • http://www.hacksomnia.com red

    This will really come in handy for me and by the way tnx for sharing this info.

  • wellness1

    I have a 30 minute PPT I created for my father after he passed away. We showed it at his memorial service. Now many relatives want a DVD of it. The problem is that I have 30 audio song tracks and 15 video clips that I had powerpoint access and play off my hard drive while the presentation was playing (the files are NOT embedded into the presentation). I spent about 100 hours creating the show. I have it running automatically so the slides transition on their own after X number of seconds. How can I play it on my computer and record it into DVD. I have tried with an external DVD burner, through the S Video port of my computer, but the final product was less than clear visually. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  • ragein

    Thanks for the info! I was all excited and downloaded the software, but neglected to remember that I’m using a Mac. None of the software that I downloaded is compatible for my lappy. This is highly frustrating. If anyone has any clue how to convert ppt (with music, video, and lots of simple animation) to a dvd on a Mac, I would love to hear about it!

  • http://www.acoolsoft.com Acoolsoft

    Thanks for sharing.

    Here is another article I read about how to convert PowerPoint to DVD video, Flash and PDF for FREE.
    http://www.online-tech-tips.com/computer-tips/powerpoint-to-dvd-flash-pdf/

    Share with the members here.

  • foip

    hi, I use iwisoft swf to video converter. the best swf converter i have tried. good!

  • tongjixuejiaoshou

    PPTX Converter the most professional powerpoint 2007 converter. It is used to convert pptx files to pdf, doc, docx, docm, xls, xlsm, xlsx, txt, rtf, htm, html, url, jpg, jpeg, tga, bmp, rle, png, emf, wmf, gif, tif, flv, swf, etc.

  • peter
  • peter
  • http://www.izzybox.com Jual DVD

    Hi, thanks for sharing. I’ve tried “EM PowerPoint to Video Converter Free”, this tool is rockin great. Love it ;)

  • kylie

    i made such a nice ppt presentation for my boyfriend for our anniversary.. i thought i could put it on a dvd, but my mom, who knows a bit about computers says i cant, i really need to put it on a dvd EXACTLY the way it is, with the animations, slide transitions, and audio.. HELP!! i dont want to mess it up.

  • http://www.dvdiphoneconverter.com/ dvdiphoneconverter

    Thank you for your useful guide.

  • Jane

    I convert ppt to dvd using Presentation to Video Converter and it’s nice prog and really simple.

    • Samer

      @Jane: but the program you mention is not free.

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  • http://na deon Klingbiel

    thank you for the helpful article. we do power point presentations. we have a projector with a vga cable. customers bring there laptops. it happens that there can sometimes be an issue with resolution incompatabillity or a technical error on the last minute. I am confident that the information provided will resolve the challenge. we have a dvd player with vga out that and as this is permanently set up we know that this work. thank you for sharing this is much appreciated.

  • http://www.powerpoint-to-dvd.org/ Andylau

    I have to admit though these conversion tools that I tried it for a while, it can help you users convert PowerPoint to video, DVD and flash format with all the original animations retained. very easy to use! thanks for sharing such a good stuff!

  • http://www.powerpointtovideo.net/ Lifer

    specail thanks to the publisher.

    I have been looking for such a good stuff for a long time, this is a useful guide that teach me how to convert PowerPoint to video.

  • http://www.freewaregenius.com/2008/12/17/how-to-convert-powerpoint-to-dvd-for-free/ Cherry

    Thank you so much for posting the powerpoint converted to a DVD. This has saved me not only time but money as well.

    Thank you for all who have done their homework and shared with others.

    You really did make my holidays this year!!!!
    Keep up the good work and continue sharing!!!

  • http://www.offclassroom.com sagar

    hey one easy method w/o using any software is here: http://goo.gl/LUBM1

  • http://www.dvdripperprogram.com/ DVD ripper

    this is pretty good

  • http://gnaservicesinc.com Andy

    You do not need power point on your computer, libreeoffice will do very well actually and it can export your power point directly to SWF, reducing the complexity of the operation. Not to mention that since libree office is free, this task can not be done entirely with free software.
    http://www.libreoffice.org/download/

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  • Jeff

    I tried to download DVD Flick but my virus scanner popped up saying it was a threat, any ideas on where else to get this program?

  • Robert

    Just to let you guys know, and for anyone using powerpoint 2010 or higher that has navigated to this site, powerpoint 2010 now has the option to save in wmv format. That, combined with the windows DVD maker (or any of the now many free programs that convert wmv to the correct dvd format), has made this a 2 step process.

  • http://dvdslideshowgui.tk tin2tin

    http://dvdslideshowgui.tk can do this for free if Open Office or Libre Office is installed.

    Here is a video tutorial:
    http://blip.tv/dvdslideshowgui/ppt2dvd-powerpoint-to-dvd-with-dvd-slideshow-gui-3127426

    And a tutorial in text(google translated):
    http://bit.ly/xMZjEL

    And a DVD slideshow GUI getting started tutorial:
    http://blip.tv/dvdslideshowgui/dvd-slideshow-gui-tutorial-basic-functions-2644650

    • Samer

      @ tin2tin: wow, thanks for the tip Tin2tin. I think it is time for this tutorial to be updated!

  • http://www.fileviewpro.com/ pps file extension

    Thanks for sharing this information with us. I will try this. It’s very helpful for us. Hope it’s a great idea.