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Convert PowerPoint 2002/2003 comments into PowerPoint 2000 comments


If you enter comments in PowerPoint 2002 and later, they're invisible to people who open the presentation in PowerPoint 2000 and earlier, and in Mac PowerPoint versions at least through PowerPoint 2004.

And even in PowerPoint 2002 and up, you can't print these new-style comments along with your slide; you can only print them as a second sheet that includes the comment text (but no indication of the comment's location on the slide).

And there's no option to have new-style comments appear during a slide show. This used to be possible in previous versions of PowerPoint.


There's no way to fix this problem from PowerPoint 2000 and earlier, or from Mac Powerpoint. These solutions only work in the versions of PowerPoint that actually created the new style comments (ie, 2002 and up, Windows).

Our PPTools StarterSet Plus add-in includes a tool that lets you add old-style comments to your PowerPoint 2002 and later presentations.

It also includes a tool that converts existing new-style comments to old-style ones.

Converted comments are visible in older versions/Mac versions of PowerPoint and print along with the slides/appear in slide shows if you so choose.

If you'd rather do it yourself, here's a VBA subroutine you can run in PowerPoint 2002 or later. It locates each comment in the current presentation and adds an old-style comment with the same author, date and text, more or less.

Both comments disappear in PowerPoint 2002 when you choose View and remove the checkmark next to Markup. Only the oldstyle comment will be visible in older versions of PowerPoint.

There's also a routine to delete the new-style comments if you wish.

Sub ConvertComments()
' Converts new-style comments to old

    Dim oSl As Slide
    Dim oSlides As Slides
    Dim oCom As Comment

    Set oSlides = ActivePresentation.Slides
    For Each oSl In oSlides
        For Each oCom In oSl.Comments
            With oSl.Shapes.AddComment(oCom.Left, oCom.Top)
                .TextFrame.TextRange.Text = oCom.Author & " " & oCom.DateTime _
                    & vbCrLf _
                    & oCom.Text
            End With
        Next oCom
    Next oSl

End Sub

Sub DeleteNewComments()
' Optionally delete new-style comments

   Dim oSld as Slide
   Dim x as Long

   For each oSld in ActivePresentation.Slides
      For x = oSld.Comments.Count to 1 Step -1
      Next x
   Next oSld

End Sub

See How do I use VBA code in PowerPoint? to learn how to use this example code.

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Convert PowerPoint 2002/2003 comments into PowerPoint 2000 comments
Last update 07 June, 2011