How to embed a file in Powerpoint

In the previous post, we saw how linking of files works. Now let us understand what Embedding means.  We will continue with the same scenario of embedding an Excel File in PowerPoint.  However, this concept would work across all Office applications.

You have copied some data from Excel. Now you paste it into PowerPoint and choose the EMBED option.

Copy Paste - How to embed a file in PowerPoint

It is still showing the Excel range you copied. It behaves like a picture if you try to resize it. But it actually made a copy of the ENTIRE EXCEL FILE and stuffed it into your PowerPoint presentation.

If the original Excel file was, say, 20 MB in size, the presentation size will also grow by 20 MB.

When to Embed?

If you want to package the Excel file with PowerPoint presentation, then this is the best option. The benefit is, you can still show specific summary data on the slide.

If you want to send the presentation with collaterals – this is the best way.

How to open the embedded file?

While editing the presentation, just right click on the object – Choose Worksheet Object and Select Open.

Open an embedded file

DO NOT choose EDIT. If you do, it tries to give you Excel editing capabilities in the small area in which you have pasted the data. The ribbon automatically changes to Excel options rather than PowerPoint options. This is called in-place editing. But most people get confused with it. If you want to expand the range of selection, this is a good option to use.

In either case, the Excel file which it opens is NOT the original file. It will have a name like worksheet in Presentation3. This file now lives inside the presentation (in geek language, it is called OLE File System).

Removing the embedded file

For any reason, if you feel that you should not have embedded the file, how to manage the situation? I am sure you will know this answer if you have read all the Copy Paste Series posts.

Copy the Embedded object, Paste it as Picture and delete the original embedded object!

Next post

We will explore the Insert Object feature in the next post. It is similar to Embed but with a small difference. In fact Insert Object and Embed are interchangeable!

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