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RUN PROGRAM action settings don't work any longer

Problem

Your PowerPoint 2016 presentation includes Run Program action settings.

In other words, you've selected a shape, then gone to the Insert ribbon and chosen Links | Actions | Run Program: SomeProgram.EXE.

Normally, this launches SomeProgram when you click the shape in slide show view, but that was then. This is now mid-October, 2017 or later and you have PowerPoint 2016 16.0.8431.1000 or later.

And it no longer works. You click the shape and ... and ... and nothing.

What's happened?

Microsoft has decided to turn the feature off in the interest of security and provided no warning that your presentations are now broken if they use this feature. Rude, right?

Solution

To get the old behavior back, you (or the IT admin) needs to add/modify this registry key:

In HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\16.0\PowerPoint\Security

look for

RunPrograms

and change its value to:

If there's no RunPrograms entry, create it as a DWORD and set its value to 1.

If none of that made sense to you, it may be best to find a nerd friend to make the changes for you. Making mistakes in the registry can cause all sorts of problems and possibly even disable your computer. Let's not do that.

Background

See this Microsoft article for more information about this change.


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RUN PROGRAM action settings don't work any longer
http://www.pptfaq.com/FAQ01262-RUN-PROGRAM-action-settings-dont-work-any-longer.htm
Last update 24 January, 2018
Created: 24 January, 2018