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Edit XML PowerPoint Notes Corruption

A problem which seems to have become more common is corruption of PowerPoint Notes Pages.

NOTE This is a fairly Advanced Topic and might be daunting for beginners!

Your Notes Page might look like this:

Odd Notes Page

Unfortunately no-one seems to know the cause and it can only be fixed by going "under the hood" and editing XML. This can be a daunting task if you are not familiar with the techniques. XML is not forgiving of errors so always work on a copy!

Get Software

Unless you have professional XML editing software you should start by downloading suitable software to break open the pptx file and to edit the underlying XML.

We suggest: (these are not the only options)

7Zip from https://www.7-zip.org/download.html (use the msi version)

XML NotePad from https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/download/details.aspx?id=7973

Install both packages before you continue.

Lets Start

NOTE If show file extensions is not enabled you will not see the .xml extension.

Right Click the copy of your file and choose 7 Zip > Extract File2

7Zip Dialog

Leave the default settings and you should get a zip folder. Open the Zip Folder and then the PPT Folder.

Open PPT Folder

We are going to edit the presentation.xml file. RIGHT click it and choose Edit with XML Notepad

XML Notepad

In XML Notepad select the Notes Size branch (

Notes Size

The values for cx and cy are usually 685800 and 9144000. (To convert to inches divide by 914400 so these values are 7.5 x 10 inches)

In this case cy is incorrect so change to 914400 and save.

Close XML NotePad and go back to the (now corrected ) zip folder. Make sure you go back to the opening dialog as shown below. Select all the elements and then Right click 7Zip > Add to archive

Right Click

In the next Dialog change the Archive Name to Good_Notes.pptx and OK.

Good Notes


Open Good_Notes.pptx and hopefully it is fixed. There IS a fair bit to go wrong so you might need a few practice attempts!

If the size now looks correct but the placeholders are not in the correct place in the notes master go to View > NotesMaster and deselect all the placeholder in the ribbon and then reselect them




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