Hyperlink to a specific slide in another presentation, or specific location in another file

Hyperlinking to another file from PowerPoint is a very valuable tool. It helps you connect content from multiple locations. But, if you would like to hyperlink to another presentation, you might not want to link to the first slide. Suppose you want to start with slide 3?

Caution: If you’ll be traveling, put the second presentation in the same folder as the current presentation. Then be sure to take the second presentation with you — for example, if you’ll copy your main presentation to a laptop, be sure to copy the presentation that you’re linking to as well.

Link to a specific PowerPoint slide in another presentation

You can easily link to a specific slide in another presentation. Follow these steps:

1.   Select the object on the slide that you want to use for the hyperlink.

2.   Choose Insert > Hyperlink (2007: Insert tab> Links group> Hyperlink) or press Ctrl-K.

3.   In the Insert Hyperlink dialog box, choose Existing File or Web Page from the Link To bar at the left.

4.   Click the Bookmark button.

5.   The Select a Place in Document dialog box opens, listing all the slides in the presentation to which you’re linking.

Select a Place in Document dialog box

Select a Place in Document dialog box

6.   Choose the slide you want and click OK.

Note: If your object is an Action Button, the Action Settings dialog box opens. Choose the Hyperlink To option. From the drop-down list, choose Other PowerPoint Presentation. Navigate to the presentation and click OK. The Hyperlink to Slide dialog box opens, which is just like the Select Place in Document dialog box, listing the slides. Choose the one you want and click OK twice.

In Slide Show view, click the object and the other PowerPoint presentation opens, displaying the slide you selected. You can continue to show the following slides of the other presentation if you want. Press Esc to close the other presentation and return to your original location in the first presentation.

Hyperlink from PowerPoint to a specific location in another file

Suppose that you want to link to a specific location in a Word or Excel file? You can do this as well.

Note: In Word, to create a bookmark, you choose Insert (tab)> Bookmark. Enter the bookmark name (no spaces; it can’t start with a number), and click Add. In Excel, select a cell or range of cells. In the Name box (on the left, above the top-left cell), enter a name and press Enter.

Follow these steps:

1.   Create the bookmark or named range and remember the name.

2.   Select the object on the slide that you want to use for the hyperlink.

3.   Choose Insert > Hyperlink (2007: Insert tab> Links group> Hyperlink) or press Ctrl-K.

4.   In the Insert Hyperlink dialog box, choose Existing File or Web Page from the Link To bar at the left. Then navigate to the document and choose it.

5. Click the Bookmark button. Well, this is what you’re supposed to do, but you’ll get an error message! Here you see it after I’ve clicked the Show Help button.

an error message

an error message

6. Click OK to get out of that! You’re back in the Insert Hyperlink dialog box and you can see your document in the Address text box. Here’s the trick: at the end of the address enter # (the pound sign) and the name of the bookmark or named range, as you see here.

in the Insert Hyperlink dialog box

in the Insert Hyperlink dialog box

Link to a specific slide in another PowerPoint presentation

In fact, you can use this technique for PowerPoint presentations: add # and the slide title, which is the slide number, a period, and the slide title (spaces are OK). You can see an example here. If you edit the hyperlink, you may see that PowerPoint has put %20 in each space. That’s HTML code for a space and you can leave it as is.
enter the pound sign

enter the pound sign

7. Click OK and you’re done.

Note: Check each hyperlink after you create it.

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58 comments to Hyperlink to a specific slide in another presentation, or specific location in another file

  • amar

    Thanks and good technique to create the document with good flow when the data is scattered across various documents.

  • Pras

    In an MS Outlook email (html format) or in a MS Word document, can I create a hyperlink to a specific slide in a specific powerpoint file. I tried pasting manually # 2. Title. But, it gives the following error: “General failure: The URL was: “file:///C:\temp\…. The system cannot find the path specified.”
    Is there any way to make this work?

  • It won’t work in an email because when the recipient opens it, the link is no longer valid. The PowerPoint presentation isn’t on the recipient’s computer; it’s on yours.
    To link from Word to PowerPoint try this:
    Save the PowerPoint file as a PowerPoint Show (.pps or .ppsx)
    In Word, link to the show, using the # trick. It seems to only work when there is a slide title, by the way.
    This worked for me.
    I strongly suggest that you have the PowerPoint and Word files in the same folder.

  • Pras

    Thanks Ellen.
    I tried MS Word it works!! However, when I tried to open the link from my own draft email, it gives the same “General failure…” error. Is it because the email draft is still saved on a server which is not same location as the saved .ppsx file on my PC? In turn, I was planning to use a SharePoint teamsite to save the ppsx file so that the path is valid to all email receipients. Not sure whether it will be possible. Any suggestions?

  • I’d be interested in your results with posting the presentation online and linking to it. I haven’t tried that. Let us know how it goes!

  • Yuri

    I tried Hyperlink from PowerPoint to a specific location in another file as shown above and it works. But when I re-open those files again, it did not work. Yes, the hyperlink is still there and can be opened but only opening the doc file not directly go to the specific page on the doc file.
    I looked into the hyperlink dialog box and found the pound sign (#)at the end gone..but the doc file is still there.
    Any suggestions please?

  • I just tried again.. It’s a couple of days since I opened the Excel and PowerPoint files that I used for testing. The link still works and the # is still there. But there was a delay. What happened is that I had another presentation open. When the hyperlink is clicked, it opens a dialog box warning you about hyperlinks. Did you get that? Here’s an article about that message: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/925757

  • Yuri

    Hi Ellen,
    Sorry for belated infor. Thank you very much.

  • Andrei

    Hi everybody.
    (I’m planning to create some kind of overview. In the first place I thought of a offline website, but years passed since I’ve created a website. But it will be huge. )

    Is there a way to close previous presentation each time you click on a hyperlink? I’m thinking that the system might crash if I create a presentation with connection to +-35 ppt’s, so after a while googling through the ppt they will all be open. And that’s not a good idea…

  • anna

    i added an hyperlink to a slide in a other presentation, but it won’t open in a slideshow. It keeps saying i dont have the add-in. do you know what i have to change?

  • I don’t know why you would get a message about an add-in. Add-ins can sometimes interferes with things working properly. Try saving the PowerPoint file as a PowerPoint Show (.pps or .ppsx) and see if you get the result you want.

  • J

    Hi All–I created a button in powerpoint to go to a specific slide in my presentation. I published the file in Adobe Presenter. The action button does not work. It’s actually a shape to which I applied beveled and shadow effects. Do you know of a work around or how to fix this issue?

  • I don’t have Adobe Presenter, so I can’t help you. Maybe another reader will have the answer.

  • Rosie

    I have all three files on the flash drive and have created all the hyperlinks. They work fine on my workstation, however, as the drive letter changes when i use the flash drive on another workstation the hyperlinks no longer work. Any suggestions. The files need to be on a flash drive as i giving a presentation offsite and will be using their hardward. thanks.

  • Was the other presentation in the same folder when you hyperlinked it?

  • Mike

    I am attempting to link to a specific .ppt slide from a SharePoint 2010 image mapped .jpg.

    I have added the url in my html along with the # and subsequent info. I have tried with and without %20 for spaces after the #.

    In either case, when I click the image, it links to the correct file, but upon opening, I get this error.

    PowerPoint can’t open the type of file represented by http://path/filname

    I can open the file without the bookmark information and have the needed permissions. If I include the bookmark in my anchor tag, I get the error. I’ve looked online briefly to no avail.

    Ideas? Thanks!

  • I don’t know what a “SharePoint 2010 image mapped .jpg” means. Is it like a website? PowerPoint might realize that the link is coming from a webpage and block it. Or not understand it. Does it work from one PowerPoint file to another?

  • Mike

    That means the .jpg file is image-mapped (clickable with HTML anchors, ie, click on Kansas on the .jpg to go to the Kansas page). The .jpg is in a Content Editor Web Part in SP 2010.

    I can copy out the URL with the anchor and try to paste it into the browser and get the same error. I’ll continue to work on it. Thanks!

  • Leslie

    I have a .htm file which contains a long list (more than can be comfortably shown on a slide). Certain list items hyperlink to specific slides in different PowerPoint shows (.ppsx), or different slides in the same show and the links work.
    What I want to do now is use Shyam Pillai’s Live Web add-in to show the .htm file on one slide and still have the hyperlinks work – at present they crash Powerpoint.
    Any ideas of an alternative way of achieving the same action?

  • Why does it work as an HTM file? Because you can scroll? If you could put a scrollable text box on a slide, would that help?

  • Leslie

    because I am still getting to grips with all the goodies and didn’t know about the scrollable text box 🙁
    tried it but could hyperlink text inside the box – but at least I have a new ” toy” to experiment with.

    thanks for the pointer

  • Jeff

    Hi Ellen – I hyperlinked some pics to a specific slide in another presentation but it takes me to slide #1 each time i click (while on presentation view) and when it opens, it doesn’t open in presentation style. Please help. Thank you in advance. Jeff

  • Do you mean that the other presentation opens in Normal view? I’ve never seen that happen. Try again with another presentation, perhaps.
    Which method did you use to hyperlink to a specific slide? In the post, I mention using the Bookmark dialog box and also using the # symbol.

  • Pete Beard

    Brilliant – I’ve looked through many help files and this is the best. Quick and easy instructions to follow and works well in my training material Thanks

  • Julie


    I have multiple PowerPoints created and saved on my USB drive. Each PowerPoint has a blank slide at the end with a hyperlink to the next PowerPoint file. It works fine on my computer, but when I try to use the USB on a different computer, the hyperlink won’t work. Ideas?

  • My guess is that the URL isn’t valid on he new URL. Were all presentations in the same folder when you created the hyperlinks? If not, you would have to perfectly reproduce the folder structure on the new computer.

  • Julie

    Yes, all the presentations were in the same folder on the USB before I created the hyperlinks. I want to run the presentations from the USB, not download them to the new computer. What do I need to do to the hyperlink to make it work properly?

  • Julie,
    Hyperlinks often break when you move the presentation. Try FixLinks Pro: http://www.pptools.com/fixlinks/index.html

  • falak

    I just want to know that after creating a link it does work but I want to refer back to the root ppt from where I had created this link …..
    need help immediately plzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

  • I’m not sure what you mean by “refer back to the root ppt” but if you close the 2nd presentation, you’ll be back on the slide of the original presentation where you started.

  • Gene

    I heve created an action to open a slide in the same presentation. It doesn’t work with Click or Mouse Over. The only way I can open the link is to right click and then use open hyperlink. I can’t figure out why it doesn’t work as it should. Any suggestions?

    I also tried to link to a specific page in a PDF or another Powerpoint presentation. With either the PDF or PPT the link opens only to the first page or the first slide depending on the file. Again, I add the #after the file name and the slide/page number and slide name as you indicated but it still only opens to the first page/slide of the linked doc. I can’t figure out what’s going on. Any help would be appreciated. I am using PPT 2013.

  • Faye

    When I created a link to another slide in a different presentation and then sent the presentation to 2 of my colleagues they could not open the link. Is that because they do not have a copy of my folder containing both presentations. Or is it because I did not save both presentations in the same folder.
    How would I go about sending them the final presentation that will contain hyperlinks to slides in other presentations?

  • Faye

    To Gene- Dated 10-14-2013:
    If you click on the ‘Slide Show’ tab at the top of the ribbon; then, choose ‘From Beginning’ (top left of your screen). Then once the slide show begins, you should see the links (the hand) and they should immediately take you to other slides.

  • Ceri

    Thanks for this tip, it was just what I was looking for.

    I set up all of the hyperlinks between various presentations using the bookmark dialogue box but now I have a problem.

    All files are saved in the same folder on a memory stick and all of the hyperlinks are in tact and correct to the specified place in the additional presentations but when I open the initial PowerPoint on my laptop it automatically opens in presentation mode so when I click the link to a different PowerPoint file it has reverted to going to the first slide and not the third slide that the hyperlink says.

    If however I open PowerPoint first then open the initial file it opens in normal mode where I can edit if I should wish and if I go straight to slide show then the hyperlinks go to the specified bookmark in the next presentation.

    Why is it doing this?!

    I will be giving the memory stick to my boss and I need to know that it is going to link to the correct places otherwise it will make no sense!

  • Muddasir

    Just brilliant. It explains exactly what I was looking for in simplest possible way.


  • Max

    Hi Ellen,
    I am trying to link specific slide from presentation number 1 to the text on a slide from presentation number 2. But when I click the link associated with the text from presentation number 2, every time the first slide from presentation number 1 is opened instead of specific slide.
    Why it is that every time first slide opens and not any other specific slide?
    Pl help.

  • Did you use a bookmark as explained in the blog post?

  • Jojo

    Hyperlink from PowerPoint to a specific location in another file word documents, but when i restart my laptop or desktop and open the slides and try to click the link disappeared or the link open but not in specific location, when i check my link the bookmark # (the pound sign)plus code name gone…. please help us… thank you

  • Zeanab

    Hi Ellen

    My powerpoint presentation is not opening my linked word documents. My linked web pages are opening though. Please help

  • Hard to know what the problem is with that information. Have you tried with a new presentation just to troubleshoot? Was the Word document moved? Try saving a Word document in the same folder as the presentation and see if you can link to it.

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  • Carlos Luis Brito

    Question: Can I make a link to a PPS and/or a PPSX that will allow other people see the PPS when I email then the link? In other words, will they be able to see it by just clicking a link?
    Please, let me know if it is possible and what should I do to learn to do it
    Thank You
    Carlos Luis

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  • Eric

    Seems like this doesn’t work for slide pages >=10. If I link to slide 11 it just goes to slide 1.

  • Brian

    Hi I applied a hyperlink within an excel folder but when I click it an error comes up saying “This operation has been cancelled due to restrictions in effect on this computer. Please contact your system administrator.” the trouble is I don’t know of any restrictions. Please can somebody help.
    Regards Brian

  • Sumit

    I am trying to link a specific page of a PDF to a PPT presentation? Tried the pound sign trick, but its not working. It lands me to the index page (first page) of the destination document, but does not go into the target page.

    Any guidance will be highly appreciated.

  • I’ve never tried that, but if it doesn’t work, it’s because PowerPoint doesn’t have access to the required information. Remember that PDF is an Adobe format, not a Microsoft one. I’d suggest isolating that page in a PDF of its own and linking to that.

  • Steven

    Hello. Thank you for the tutorial. I’d love to get it working. My problem is the same one described by Jeff, Gene, Ceri, Max, and Sumit above. I do not see any responses to their posts which address this issue. I have created two new ppt files and when I link to a specific slide, as instructed in your tutorial, the link opens the second power point file always to the first slide and not to the file specified in the bookmarked link. I am also using Power Point 2013. Any solutions yet?

  • AJ

    I have an power point document saved on a sharepoint.

    The should open the PowerPoint presentation at slide #54.
    If I try to open it from within the Outlook Preview pane, it does not work. It opens the presentation at the first slide.

    However, if I open the email and then click on the link, then it takes me to the requisite slide (#54). What’s the difference in the way that the file is opened that makes the second method work?

  • Arleen Veve

    great read!

  • Bondage

    Excellent way of explaining, and nice post to get facts
    concerning my presenation subject, which i am going to deliver
    in school.

  • Michelle

    Hi, just wondered if anyone has resolved the issue regarding the hyperlink opening on the first page and not the desired page yet? Thanks

  • Michelle, are you trying to link to a Word document? I just tried it and it worked for me. I clicked the hyperlink and it took me to the bookmark in the Word document rather than the first page.

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  • W. Kostecki

    Here https://app.box.com/s/klniegrf4u33i0dhadz6tbcdxvnspuoj you can see my comprehensive Thunderbird e-mail (worked out in detail for somebody) in which you will find all the steps I used to make this “How to hyperlink from a selected place of a selected slide of PPTX file to a specific place in Word DOCX file” work perfectly on my Win 10 Pro PC with MS Office 2016. Anybody can access and download that e-mail from there. Hope it can be useful to many. I just like to share things with others.

  • I have numerous hyperlinks in a presentation (can’t help it- they’re necessary to keep the actual program to a manageable level). The Presentation is saved as a PowerPoint Show. When originally created ALL the hyperlinks worked as intended ….
    Now about half of them tell me “Can’t open this file”. When I copy the links to a PowerPoint Presentation they all work.

    How do I get the links in the show file to work?

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