Best way to write presentations on a mac for display on windows PC

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by spiff101, May 16, 2015.

  1. spiff101 macrumors member

    Apr 11, 2006
    What is the best way to ensure that presentations written on my mac display correctly on a Windows PC using MS Powerpoint? Currently I write my presentations in Keynote and export to .ppt (I find .pptx gives more errors like elements shifted around and in undesired fonts). I'd like to find the cheapest solution possible. I thought about NeoOffice, using Windows in a virtual machine, or MS Office for mac. I'd love to be able just to write them in Keynote and have some foolproof way of checking that the export will display correctly, but maybe I should just switch to writing in Powerpoint.
  2. TheralSadurns macrumors 6502a

    Jul 8, 2010
    1. You could use
    2. and this I highly recommend: export to pdf with individual steps as a page.

    This and only THIS ensures everything works 100% and looks like it looks on your computer.

    If you're used to working with keynote don't even try to work with PowerPoint. You're gonna hate it. Plus even powerpoint to powerpoint a LOT of things can go wrong. And since all nice animations like the 'Magig Move' won't work anyways I'd just use pdfs.

    In Adobe Reader you can Ctrl+L to go into a presentation style full-screen mode and present that way!
  3. spiff101 thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 11, 2006
    Thanks. I will switch to pdfs for presentations for now, that's a good idea. But I would like to still be able to use animations sometimes; can anyone comment on writing presentations in keynote and then exporting to ppt? Is checking via virtual machine or MS Office reliable?
  4. SlCKB0Y macrumors 68040


    Feb 25, 2012
    Sydney, Australia
    As the previous person suggested, why not just use something online?
  5. TheralSadurns macrumors 6502a

    Jul 8, 2010
    I constantly have to export Keynote to PPT files.
    A few observastions.
    The Magic Move doesn't work at all... and gets translated to a dissolve in PPT. The problem is... dissolve in PPT is NOT what we think dissolve is. It's more like a pixelated checkerboard.
    In Keynote I only ever really use to different transitions, dissolve and Magic Move. BOTH of which convert to PPTs horrible dissolve.
    To fix this I have to open the resulting file in PPT, select all slides and change them to what PPT calls 'Fade'. PPT face effect = keynote dissolve effect.

    Timed builds... where a box pops up... or an arrow is drawn etc. generally work just fine though. Sometimes, however, the layer order is screwed up, aka objects that used to be in the back are now in the front and vice versa. Most prominently if you use the 'connect' function in keynote to connect two objects.

    The other thing that is troublesome is that sometimes boxes that contain text are strangly misaligned... so that the text appears ABOVE the text in PPT rather than inside.

    Hope that helps...
  6. Naio macrumors member


    Apr 2, 2015
    I recently had to do a presentation on a Windows PC and the way I did it worked great, but it was a very simple presentation. It may not work on an advanced/complex presentation. I honestly don't know how the compatibility is between Keynote on Mac and Keynote on iCloud.

    1. Created my presentation with Keynote on Mac
    2. Shared to iCloud with URL and password enabled
    3. Created a short URL that forwarded to the iCloud URL
    I chose to share it with URL and create a short URL so that I didn't have to log-in with my iCloud account on a PC I didn't trust and because it saved time.
  7. sracer macrumors 604


    Apr 9, 2010
    I would never want to rely on the availability of the cloud (any cloud) to access my files at a critical time. But that's me.

    As for developing presentations on a Mac for display on a windows device, although I have access to Office for both Mac and Windows, I find that Impress (presentation module of LibreOffice) does the best job of preserving the presentation across platforms.
  8. Naio macrumors member


    Apr 2, 2015
    No, that is definitely a very valid concern. I imagine it could also be a security concern for some?
  9. spiff101 thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 11, 2006
    Using iCloud is a good idea but I can't bank on on there being either a reliable internet connection or a remotely up-to-date browser on the PCs from which I have to present.

    Do you use Impress to write the presentation and then export to .ppt? Unfortunately I can't install any software on the PCs I use to present. (Nor can I bring my macbook in and just present from that, as the connections to projectors are contained in locked cabinets which also contain the PCs)
  10. sracer macrumors 604


    Apr 9, 2010
    Ah, thanks for the clarification.

    For my general workflow, if I know that I will be able to use my Macbook Air to present, then I create the presentation in KeyNote (iWork '09 version) and present using that. It is far and away the best tool for the job IMO.

    But if I'm not sure, then I'll create it in Impress and keep the animations and transitions to a minimum. (that's a good practice to get into regardless) I'll restrict the fonts that I use to those that "standard" to Windows (or bundled with MS Office)... that's a safe assumption if PowerPoint for Windows will be used to present.

    If you'll need to do this on a regular basis, I would recommend getting an MS Office 365 subscription. (as low as) $67 a year allows you to install Office (Windows or Mac) on up to 5 desktops/notebooks and 5 tablets.

    The use of PDFs is a good idea. Another option could be to generate images of the slides (.png) and embed them into a presentation so that each slide is nothing more than the image of the slide. That allows you to have some transitions between slides but preserve font and formatting as you would get with PDFs.
  11. spiff101 thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 11, 2006
    Thanks all, this has given me some good ideas. pdfs for now and I will look into Impress and MS Office.

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