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Custom numbering a presentation


Sometimes we need to start slide numbering with some number other than 1. PowerPoint lets us start with whatever number we like, but it always starts numbering on the first slide.

But what if the first couple slides are title pages, tables of contents or other such material like you'd find at the beginning of a textbook? And what if you want the slide numbering to start on the fourth slide?

PowerPoint won't do this for you. But with a bit of VBA, you can make it happen.


This macro will number your slides starting with whatever slide you choose, and beginning with whatever number you choose (you'll need to edit the macro where indicated). If you add or remove slides later, you'll need to run the macro again; it'll automatically delete its previously added numbers and add new, corrected ones.

Sub CustomNumberSlides()
    Dim oSl As Slide
    Dim oSh As Shape
    Dim x As Long
    Dim oNumber As Shape
    Dim lStartNumberingOn As Long
    Dim lStartingNumber As Long
    Dim sFormat as String

    ' What slide should the numbering start ON
    lStartNumberingOn = 4
    ' What should the first slide number BE
    lStartingNumber = 4
    ' How should the number be displayed
    sFormat = "000"   ' three digits, add leading zeros

    ' First, delete any previous numbers
    ' created by this macro:
    For Each oSl In ActivePresentation.Slides
        For x = oSl.Shapes.Count To 1 Step -1
            If oSl.Shapes(x).Tags("MyNumber") = "Y" Then
            End If

    ' Now add new slide numbers:
    For x = lStartNumberingOn To ActivePresentation.Slides.Count
        Set oSl = ActivePresentation.Slides(x)
        With oSl.Shapes.AddTextbox(msoTextOrientationHorizontal, 0, 0, 50, 20)

            ' Add a tag so we can find and delete the number later
            .Tags.Add "MyNumber", "Y"
            ' Set the text of the number
            .TextFrame.TextRange.Text = Format(lStartingNumber, sFormat)

            ' Edit these to change the position of the number
            .Left = 20
            .Height = 20
            .Top = 500
            .Width = 50

            ' Edit these to change the formatting of the number
            With .TextFrame.TextRange.Font
                .Size = 12
                .Color.RGB = RGB(255, 0, 0)
            End With
        End With

        lStartingNumber = lStartingNumber + 1


End Sub

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

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Custom numbering a presentation
Last update 15 December, 2019
Created: 14 December, 2019