Comparing PowerPoint Presentations in Office 2011 for Mac

By Geetesh Bajaj, James Gordon

With PowerPoint 2011 for Mac, you can now easily compare the presentation you’re viewing with another presentation. Additionally, you can use the PowerPoint’s Compare feature in a fashion similar to Word and Excel’s Track Changes. Here’s how:

  1. Open one of the two presentations you want to compare in Normal view.

  2. Click the Ribbon’s Review tab, and in the Compare group, click Compare.

    The Compare Presentations file browser displays.

  3. Choose the other presentation file you want to compare against.

    The Compare Changes floating palette displays. The Compare button on the Ribbon dims, and the review changes buttons activate.

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The Compare Changes palette works in conjunction with the Normal View pane. After displaying the Compare Changes palette, you can compare individual changes this way:

  1. Select a change in the Compare Changes palette.

    The selected object, if available in the Normal view, becomes selected.

  2. Click the green check button to accept the change, or click the red crossed button to reject the change.

    You can see before and after versions in the Compare Changes palette.

    Notice bottom of the Compare Changes palette displays the other presentation’s version of the compared slide.

You can also use Compare Changes buttons on the Ribbon to accept and reject changes and consolidate two different versions of your presentation into a single presentation. Again, after displaying the Compare Changes palette, you can consolidate changes by doing the following:

  1. Select the first change in the Compare Changes palette.

    The selected object, if available in the Normal view, becomes selected.

  2. In the Compare group of the Review tab, click either Accept or Reject.

    Changes you accept are incorporated into the presentation you are viewing in Normal view.

  3. Click Next.

    Decide on each change until all changes have been accounted for.

You can skip a decision by clicking Next or by choosing a later revision in the Compare Changes palette without clicking Accept or Reject. To go back and make your decision, click Previous or choose a skipped change in the palette.

Clicking the End button terminates the Review Changes session. Any changes you haven’t decided upon won’t be included in the consolidated version.