How to embed a video into a PowerPoint presentation and package it within a SINGLE PowerPoint file

Have you ever inserted a video into a PowerPoint presentation, only to discover that you are unable to distribute your presentation as a single file? Typically, inserting a video (or videos) into a PowerPoint will require that you make sure the video(s) are always placed within the same folder as the PowerPoint file, making the distribution or sharing of your PowerPoint very complicated.

This is the case for 99% of the ‘how to insert a video into PowerPoint’ tutorials that I found on the web. However, this post will show you how you can embed a video file into a PowerPoint presentation that will be self contained within a single PowerPoint file (PPT, PPTX, PPTM, PPTS, etc), and that you can share with colleagues and distribute online without needing to share the video files separately, without having to send zipped archives, and without having to instruct people on what to do with them. This post last updated: on Jun 19th, 2012. Separate instructions are now available for PowerPoint 2003, 2007 and 2010.

Note on PowerPoint 2010 vs. earlier versions: In PowerPoint 2010, it became possible to embed a video file into your presentation fairly easily.

If you are using PowerPoint 2010 of after then click here for instructions.

Instructions for PowerPoint 2003 and 2007

The Method: in a nutshell, convert your video to a flash (SWF) file, then embed the file within your PowerPoint presentation. Embedded flash objects will be saved within the PowerPoint file itself, and will play as video. The original video does not need to be placed in the same directory as the PowerPoint file. Problem solved!

For PowerPoint 2003: from ‘step 3’ onwards, the LEFT side of the tables below show the process and screenshots for PowerPoint 2003 (it is essentially the same as 2007, but the interface is obviously different).

For PowerPoint 2007: from ‘step 3’ onwards, the RIGHT side of the tables below show the process and screenshots for PowerPoint 2007.

For PowerPoint 2010: the ‘convert to flash first’ method as explained here WILL WORK on 2010 as well, but there is an easier and more straightforward way to do it on 2010 (see here).

Step 1: download and install a tool that can convert your video to flash (SWF)

(This applies to PowerPoint 2003 and 2007 both). You can convert to flash using many video conversion programs. Any of the following video converters can do it, as can many many others:

Step 2: convert your video to SWF

(This applies to PowerPoint 2003 and 2007 both). Do it whichever way you want to and go to step #3. Alternately here’s a quick step-by-step on how to convert your video to flash. First, install DVDVideoSoft’s Free Video to Flash converter (make sure to uncheck the unnecessary crapware toolbar during the install process). Run the converter, then:

  • Converting to FlashDrag and drop your video onto the interface
  • Select SWF
  • Uncheck ‘create HTML template’;
  • Select destination folder
  • switch to high quality (optional) and
  • click ‘convert’.

See the annotated screenshot to the right.

Note: once your SWF file is generated, check out the size on disk. If it is too high and you want it to be smaller, re-convert using a lower quality setting.

 

Step 3: in PowerPoint, enable the developer tab in the ribbon

PowerPoint 2003
You do not need to worry about this in PowerPoint 2003


PowerPoint 2007.
Launch PowerPoint. Go to the start orb; then click ‘PowerPoint Options’. PowerPoint Options
Then click on ‘Show Developer Tab in Ribbon’.

You should now be able to see a new ‘Developer’ tab in the ribbon.
Show Developer Tab in Ribbon 

Step 4: create a SWF object in PowerPoint

PowerPoint 2003
Go to View menu then ‘Toolbars’/ ‘Control Toolbox’. PPT 2003 Screenshot 1
When the Control Toolbox appears; click on the tools icon in the bottom left and scroll down to ‘Shockwave flash object’ PPT 2003 Screenshot 2
Next; draw a rectangle with the mouse (this will define the size of your video). PPT 2003 Screenshot 3

 

PowerPoint 2007
Select the ‘Developer’ tab then click ‘More Controls’ More Controls in the Developer Ta
Scroll down to ‘Shockwave Flash Object’ then click ‘ok’ More Controls
Next; draw a rectangle with the mouse (this will define the size of your video). Flash Rectangle

Step 5: link up your flash object with your flash SWF video file

PowerPoint 2003
Right click on the video and select ‘Properties’.

In the dialog that appears; find ‘EmbedMovie’ and change the value to ‘True’

Scroll down to ‘movie’ and paste in the path to the flash movie you made. It should be a full path (e.g. “C:\Folderlocation\filename.SWF”) with the .SWF file extension included.

There are other controls that you could toggle as well; such as Loop (true by default; set to false if you don’t want your video to loop).
PPT 2003 Screenshot 5b

 

PowerPoint 2007
Click on ‘Properties’ in the ribbon. Flash Properties
In the dialog that appears; find ‘EmbedMovie’ and change the value to ‘True’.

Scroll down to ‘movie’ and paste in the path to the flash movie you made. It should be a full path (e.g. “C:\ Folderlocation\ filename.SWF”) with the .SWF file extension included.

Also make sure that ‘playing’ is set to ‘True’ (it should be so by default).

There are other controls that you could toggle as well; such as Loop (true by default; set to false if you don’t want your video to loop).
EmbedMovieEmbedFileName

Step 6: that’s it. Save your file.

Embedded video in PowerPointThis step applies to both PowerPoint 2003 and 2007.

To preview your flash video, just start the PowerPoint slideshow (the keyboard shortcut CTRL+F5 by default). Save your PowerPoint file and you’re done.

 


Instructions for embedding a video if you are using PowerPoint 2010:

1. Go to ‘Insert’ then ‘Video’ then ‘Video from file’. PPT 2010 screenshot 1
2. Browse to the video that you want to insert PPT 2010 screenshot 2
3. Choose whether you want the video to start automatically when the slide opens. PPT 2010 screenshot 4
4. Once the video is placed on the slide; you can resize it if you need to. PPT 2010 screenshot 3
5. That’s it. In PowerPoint 2010; the video is embedded in your PowerPoint file. Save and you’re done Image 6

If you have any thoughts or comments, please share them below.


 
 
 
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Samer Kurdi

Samer Kurdi

Has been reviewing software since 2006 when he started Freewaregenius.com
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  • Cruz Rincon

    This software allows for youtube and flashvideo inserction within powerpoint presentations. It happens to be free and compatible with office 2010 x86 (http://www.ispringsolutions.com/free_powerpoint_to_flash_converter.html)

    • solipsismexpress

      USE office 2012 lol.. I just did and it embedds perfectly …imagine that lol

      • solipsismexpress

        oops.. typo.. office 2011

  • http://throbs.net/ Rob

    I’m not sure why you needed to do this.

    Powerpoint 2010′s native tool (Insert > Video > Video from File) does this by default. On the file selection dialog, just *don’t* switch it from “Insert” to “Link to File,” and it embeds the video into the PPT.

    http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/powerpoint-help/embed-in-or-link-to-a-video-from-your-presentation-HA010374729.aspx

  • Cruz Rincon

    ISpring Free (http://www.ispringsolutions.com/free_powerpoint_to_flash_converter.html) con insert and embed flash and youtube videos inside a powerpoint presentation. It’s free and compatible with office 2010 (32 bits)

  • James

    You can convert PowerPoint presentations to video files very easily with Smart PPT Converter. It’s not complicated at all – the software basically does it all for you. Here’s a link in case you’d like to try it: http://www.ppt-to-video-converter.com

  • jasray

    Question–iSpring and the 2010 embed is known. I also assumed audio is embedded when using 2010; however, when I made and sent a .ppt slide show to a person this summer, he said when he showed the presentation the audio stopped halfway through rather than looping until the end. When I added the audio file to the folder and resent, all was fine. What did I do wrong?

  • Andrew Hutton

    As you did I found the forums /help of little use for this problem.
    I appreciate your solution but I have just been converting away from using flash to MPEGs and MP4 formats.
    Is it possible to do what you suggest with these formats?
    Possibly by enabling a different movie player in Powerpoint?
    Thanks in advance

  • http://www.emiertips.info/ Cakemier

    ISpring Free is good, You’re right Cruz

  • Pete

    I followed all the instructions, but it still seems that when my colleague opens the file the video does not play. Please help me figure this out as it is driving us crazy!

    • jill

      I have the same issue. It is because the Playing resets to false in the properties after it plays the first time. I don’t know how to fix it, but it sure would be useful since I need this for a presentation that is sent out to teachers.

  • gregori

    look what i found! I use http://share.kagoon.com which converts any document type to html and stores it online without ads or requirement to install anything.

    its so cool! you to try yourself!

  • Paul

    The instructions for embedding a movie using PowerPoint 2010 are wrong – this still requires the video file to be present in a folder along with the presentation. The link Rob posted to the Microsoft website is very misleading – embedding should mean that the presentation alone should be able to play the movie, but this is not the case.

    I haven’t tried your swf method yet but is this reliant on having flash on the host computer – this may not always be the case.

  • AW

    Uh, no. This doesn’t work. Separate files are still needed. The goal is to have the files within ppt so you email ONE file. The mechanism described above for 2010 and 2013 wastes everyone’s time. Is there anyone who has real knowledge out there who knows how to achieve a single ppt file that contains the video?

    • Name

      If you are using version 2010 and this isn’t working it may be because you are working on a file origially created in an older version as mentioned in a comment below. If your file extension is .PPT you can convert it to .PPTX by opening it in 2010 then going to the File menu, then the Info tab, and then selecting the Convert option.

    • Andy

      I think this article is useful. And if you use Powerpoint 2010 or
      2013, you can get your answers from this
      article:http://www.apowersoft.com/insert-youtube-video-into-powerpoint.html

  • Liberty Emily

    i know a step by step guide on How to Solve Can’t Insert MP4 to PowerPoint 2013/2010/2007/2003 at http://www.idealshare.net/video-converter/mp4-in-powerpoint.html

    This guide also solve can’t import avi, mov, mkv, vob, rmvb, flv, swf, wtv, 3gp and etc to powerpoint

  • Motivational Speaker

    I am using PPT 2010. The embedded .wmv file is really chunky when it’s played. I can hyperlink to the file and it plays fine but I really want to save it in the presentation to make it easier when using it on other devices. Any suggestions. Thanks

  • Andrealove

    Recommend a gull guide about how to embed mp4 file to PPT at:
    http://www.bigasoft.com/articles/how-to-play-mp4-in-powerpoint.html

    This guide applies to:

    1.Convert and play MP4 files in any version of PowerPoint Presentation including
    PowerPoint 2010, 2007, 2003, 2000, 2002, 2005 or even PowerPoint 95, 97.

    2.Convert Flip MP4 to PowerPoint compatible format for easy insert and play

    3.Convert MP4 video from iTunes to PowerPoint for easy insert MP4 into PowerPoint

    4.Convert MP4 files from QuickTime/iMovie/iDVD to PowerPoint supported video format

    5.Convert MP4 from iPad/iPhone/iPod to PowerPoint supported format

    6.Convert MP4 downloaded from YouTube or other websites to PowerPoint

    7.Convert MP4 to PowerPoint supported MPEG, WMV, MOV, AVI, ASF, SWF

    8.Convert and play other video formats including FLV, F4V, SWF, H.264, MKV, 3GP,
    RMVB, WebM, VOB, DV and more in PowerPoint Presentation

  • nocturnic

    @AW: I had the same problem and was thinking the same thing. But it turns out that it actually works exactly as described IF you use the .pptx-format. My office (a 2010 version) use 2003-2007 format by default, probably due to compatibility reasons.
    Couldn’t use the solution described for 2003 / 2007 though; probably the settings are hidden somewhere else.

  • solipsismexpress

    USE office 2011 (MAC) lol.. I just did and it embeds perfectly …imagine that lol

  • hcodlerag

    All Mac OS versions of PowerPoint support MP4 file. For Windows, PowerPoint 2007 and lower version only support WMV, AVI, ASF, and MPG(MPEG-1) video formats, PowerPoint 2010 and higher added the support for MP4 format if you have Apple QuickTime player installed.

    Converting your file to WMV(with WMV8 codec), AVI(with some ancient codec) or MPG format, is the most reliable way to ensure that you can add it to PowerPoint slide and the video is play-able even if you send your ppt to other people or play it on other machine: http://faasoft.com/articles/mp4-in-powerpoint.html