Send a presentation that opens automatically in email
Can I email a presentation that starts automatically when the recipient opens the email?
Rename the presentation file to give it a PPS instead of PPT extension (or open it in PowerPoint and save it as a PowerPoint Show instead of Presentation) and attach it to the email.
That was the good news. Now here's the discouraging part:
- IF the recipient has PowerPoint or the free Viewer installed, and
- IF they're on a PC, not a Mac, and
- IF their virus checking and other security settings permit email to run anything automatically and
- IF their computer hasn't already been wiped out by the zillions of viruses that are just looking for a wide-open PC that allows anything attached to an email to run automatically and
- IF your presentation doesn't exceed your or their email attachment size limitations (often as little as 2mb) and
- IF the recipient doesn't delete attachments on principle, then
IF all those conditions are met, then maybe, just maybe, it might work. In other words, don't bet the farm on this one.
Oh, and IF they have Outlook Express, use the PowerPoint Viewer 2003 and have applied Windows XP Service Pack 2, they won't be able to start the presentation from within Outlook at all. They'll have to know how to use one of the workarounds described here."
Whenever you attach files to email, the body of the email should explain who you are, what's in the attachment and why the recipient might want to risk opening it; these days, nearly anything from anybody might contain a virus, so opening attachments really is a risk.
But wait ... there's more
You'll also need to include any linked files. And even if the presentation starts ok, then links may not work.
Note that some email programs (Eudora, for example) put downloaded files into a single folder, others don't (Outlook). This can cause linking problems. MVP Sonia Coleman explains it thus:
Outlook Express makes you tell it where to save a file attachment. If there are multiple files you can select them all, right click and choose "Save all". That way they all go to the same folder. Of course, if you right click on a single file and select "Open", it will be opened from your Temp folder and the links will be broken.
I think that the best thing is to send the files attached to an E-mail which says in the body, "Save all of the attached files, either to a single folder on your hard drive or to your Desktop. Then locate file xxxxxxxx.PPS and double click on it to run my wonderful presentation."
Depending on the user's Outlook or Outlook Express security settings, they may not be able to save attached files at all.
And you thought this was gonna be easy, huh?
Put the PPT file up on your web site and send a link by email. Or if your PPT includes lots of linked files, zip up the PPT and all the linked files into one ZIP file and send a link to that. This has several advantages.
- You're not tossing large files at people who may not welcome them.
- You're letting people choose when and where they want to view the file, not forcing them to read it on your terms. You can't force them to open your presentation and you can't prevent them from deleting it, but if you're courteous about how you send the presentation, they may just go along with you.
- Browsers don't have the file size limitations that email does, so even people with very limited mailbox sizes can enjoy your presentation.
- You can update the PPT file whenever you like. Most people, if they save anything, will save the link to your file, not the file itself. They always see the latest/greatest version this way.