Presenter View is a secret view that’s only for you! It’s a way of seeing your notes and upcoming slides while your audience sees only the current slide as usual.
Here’s what Presenter View looks like.
What can you do with Presenter View?
As you can see, Presenter View has 3 panes: your slide, your notes, and slide thumbnails at the bottom. Here are some great Presenter View features:
- You can click any slide to go to it immediately.
- You can resize the panes by dragging on their border. For example, you might want to make the Notes pane larger and the Slide pane smaller
- At the bottom of the Notes pane, you can use the Zoom In and Zoom Out buttons to get the notes text just the size you want, so it’s easily readable.
- Beneath the slide is a timer that keeps you on track.
- Beneath the slide, you have easy access to both forward and back arrows.
- You can also access pen and pointer features by clicking the Pointer Options button below the slide.
- Beneath the slide, at the left, you see your current slide and the total number of slides.
How do you set up Presenter View?
To use Presenter View, you need to be set up to use 2 monitors (but see my exception below). You need the following:
- The computer must have multiple monitor capability. I’ve never seen a laptop that didn’t, but many desktop computers require two video cards.
- You need to enable multiple monitor support by setting the display options. This is a Windows function and varies with your version of Windows. Try going to the Control Panel and clicking the Display icon or right-clicking the desktop and choosing one of the options; on my Windows 7 laptop, I can choose Graphic Options> Output To, and then choose one of the options. Most laptops also have an F key that sets this up. For example, you might press the Fn key and the F5 key together.
Go into PowerPoint and click the Slide Show tab. Check the Use Presenter View check box. (In PowerPoint 2003, choose Slide Show< Set Up Show and check the Show Presenter View check box.) Then go into Slide Show view by clicking the Slide Show view icon at the bottom of your screen or pressing F5 (to go to the 1st slide) or Shift+F5 (to go to the currently displayed slide).
The problem is, this may not work! The check box may be grayed out or you may get a message saying that you need two monitors. That’s because Presenter View is designed to be used with your computer plus a projector.
But wait! What if you don’t have a second monitor?
Presenter View is a great tool for presenting, but it’s also excellent for practicing. By the time you are ready to present, if you practice enough, you may not need your notes, but you’ll certainly need them for practicing.
The problem is that you usually don’t have a projector with you when you’re practicing (although practicing with a projector is a great idea).
It turns out that you can trick Windows into thinking you have 2 monitors and then you can display Presenter View on your computer. Here’s the trick, which I’ve only tried in Windows 7:
Press and hold the Windows key on your keyboard, then press P (for presenter?). Here’s what you see:
Choose Extend. (Thanks to Matthew Trump for this tip, which I’ve slightly altered.)
Now, go to your presentation and check that User Presenter View check box.
Go into Slide Show view by clicking the Slide Show icon at the bottom of your screen and you should see Presenter View.
Let me know in the comments if this helps you with your practicing.