What to Do if PowerPoint is Not Responding

PowerPoint not responding is a situation that can get the willies for anyone who is hurry to finish the PowerPoint presentation before an important meeting. But this can happen for many different reasons.

One possible reason why PowerPoint 2010 or 2013 is not responding in our computer or is not working could be because the system resources are not available or our computer is out of memory.

This is more common than people imagine especially if we have lot of windows opened in our computer for example when we are designing the slides, researching content to put into our slides, editing a Word document plus an Excel spreadsheet with lot of charts, and why not using Photoshop to design the master slide or PowerPoint template.

Even Photoshop may not be responding well if we have such tool opened since the software really uses heavy resources and scratch disks and RAM memory.

In order to fix a PowerPoint not responding problem, we can try the following:

  • Close unused software windows or even unused File Explorer windows
  • Save all your work and restart your computer to free the resources
  • Make sure to avoid using big images in your presentation. Copying and pasting from large images can reduce the overall performance.
  • Avoid linking to external resources, for example if your presentation uses resources available on the Internet. Sometimes  network connections and data transferred in/out the Internet from PowerPoint or VBA can reduce your overall performance.
  • Check what 3rd party plugins and addons you are using in PowerPoint and remove any unused addins.

We assumed you are using PowerPoint on Windows but if Microsoft PowerPoint is not responding on Mac then it worth to take a look at this discussion.

Accordingly to this post here, a Microsoft’s Update might be the problem if PowerPoint is not responding on Save As.

I did a little research, and discovered that the day before Microsoft had pushed a PowerPoint “security update”, and reports were starting to trickle in of the mysterious error.  The update is called “Microsoft Windows Security Update for Powerpoint (KB2464588)”, and the problem can be reversed by uninstalling the update. There is also a Hotfix that supposedly fixes the problem: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2543241

Of course, don’t forget to save your document and presentation time to time to avoid losing the data.