Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Excel Charts in PowerPoint.

Excel Charts in PowerPoint

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 19, 2020)

If you do a lot of presentations, you may deal with many large data reports that include charts and graphs that summarize data for your audiences. Sometimes you may need to add these charts and graphs to PowerPoint presentations.

The problem with doing a simple copy and paste of a chart from Excel to PowerPoint is that although you only see the chart in the PowerPoint slide, the entire workbook is copied into PowerPoint as well. If someone double-clicks the chart in the slide, PowerPoint will open the entire Excel workbook.

This poses a couple of problems. First, unless the PowerPoint file has been password protected (not really an option for mass distribution) a user could easily adjust the data feeding into the chart and corrupt accuracy.

Secondly, since the entire Excel workbook is copied into the PowerPoint file, this can dramatically increase the total size on the PowerPoint file, possibly making it too cumbersome for distribution.

One simple solution is to modify how the pasting into PowerPoint is done. Follow these steps:

  1. In Excel, copy the chart as you normally would. (For instance, select the chart and press Ctrl+C.)
  2. In PowerPoint, display the slide where you want the chart to appear.
  3. Choose the Paste Special option from the Edit menu. PowerPoint displays the Paste Special dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Paste Special dialog box in PowerPoint.

  5. Select the Picture option.
  6. Click OK.

This time, only the image of the chart is pasted into the slide. This maintains the accuracy and security of your chart and significantly reduces the size of your PowerPoint presentation.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2882) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Excel Charts in PowerPoint.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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