11 Reasons Why Powerpoint Isn’t Letting You Save

After working hard and spending hours on a top-notch Powerpoint presentation, the last thing you want to struggle with is being able to save your work. What’s the problem? Why won’t Powerpoint allow you to save your work?

There are a couple of issues that may be standing in your way. In this article, we’ll be going over 11 reasons why. Keep reading to learn these reasons and more.

1. It’s a Read-Only File

If your Powerpoint is marked as “read-only,” you will not be able to save (or edit) the presentation.

Turn off the “read-only” option to be able to save your file by doing the following:

  1. Click “File”
  2. Go to “Info”
  3. Review the status of your presentation
  4. Select “File”
  5. Go to “Properties”
  6. Uncheck the “Read-Only” option

Now, let’s take a look at what you should do in case this doesn’t work out.

Create a New Presentation

If you’re unable to do the previous fix, you may also try creating a new presentation.

To do this, simply:

  1. Open a new presentation
  2. Copy slides from your current presentation
  3. Paste slides to the new file
  4. Save the new file to your desktop using the “Save as” option, not the keyboard shortcut (you may need to save it as a PPT)

Now, let’s see the next fix.

2. Special Characters in the File Name

Special characters are necessary for specific Powerpoint presentations, but they should not be included in the file name. Even typical special characters like exclamation points and question marks are not savable by Powerpoint.

With that in mind, double-check the file name for any special characters. Remove them from the file name and try to save the presentation.

3. Account Glitch

Sometimes, the issue is as simple as a glitch within your Powerpoint account.

The best solution is to sign out of your Powerpoint account, then sign back in using these easy instructions:

  1. Click “File”
  2. Go to “Account”
  3. Select the “Sign Out” option
  4. Sign back in
  5. Try to save your presentation

If this fix doesn’t work, check out the next one.

4. Powerpoint Needs to be Repaired

If you’ve tried signing out and back in and are sure your presentation is not “read-only,” but you’re still unable to save, there may be an issue within the Powerpoint application. You may receive a message stating, “An error occurred while PowerPoint was trying to save the file.”

You can repair it by doing the following:

  1. Go to your “Control Panel” on your device
  2. Select “Programs,”
  3. Select “Programs and Features”
  4. Select “Office 355 or Microsoft 365”
  5. Select “Change”
  6. Allow the device to make changes by selecting “Yes”
  7. Select “Quick Repair”
  8. If that doesn’t work, select “Online Repair”

Let’s move on to the next fix.

5. Corrupted Slides

Some images, diagrams, and other additions can wreak havoc on your Powerpoint application. If you try to save your presentation and are met with the error message, “File is corrupt and can’t be saved,” it’s likely due to faulty add-ons.

The best thing to do is to double-check the slides that contain add-ons. Try to copy-paste these slides. If they are unable to copy-paste, remove the add-ons and try to save the file. Or, simply remove the additions one by one and try to save the file until you are successful.

6. Preview Pane is Enabled

The “Preview Pane” is beneficial for many reasons but can also cause problems when trying to save. When “Preview Pane” is enabled, Powerpoint believes another individual is looking at the presentation, rendering it unable to be saved.

To disable “Preview Pane,” do the following:

  1. Click “File”
  2. Select “View”
  3. Deselect “Preview Pane”
  4. Try saving

If this doesn’t work, then you should keep reading for the next fix.

7. Opened Elsewhere

If your Powerpoint presentation is opened elsewhere – say, on another device – it will not be able to be saved. The error message will likely state, “Filename is currently in use. PowerPoint can’t modify it at this time.”

First and foremost, make sure that your presentation is not opened elsewhere. If it is, close the programs before attempting to save.

8. ActiveMovie is Engaged

Another potential cause for a halted save function is the “ActiveMovie” feature. If the ActiveMovie control is engaged, you may be unable to save your Powerpoint presentation.

Removing this control is easy with a few quick steps:

  1. Click on the “Tools” category
  2. Select “Macro”
  3. Select “Visual Basic Editor”
  4. Select the user with “ActiveMovie Control”
  5. Click on the “File” menu
  6. Select “Remove UserForm Name”
  7. Click “No”
  8. Return to the “File” menu
  9. Select “Close and Return to Microsoft Powerpoint”
  10. Try saving the file

Let’s see the fix for if there is a glitch next.

9. The App Is Out of Date

If all else fails, there may be a glitch within the Powerpoint application. You will repetitively receive a message claiming, “Something went wrong that may make PowerPoint unstable.” The first thing to do is check for updates. An out-of-date Powerpoint application won’t function properly.

To ensure your Powerpoint is up to date, follow these steps:

  • Click “File” followed by “Account”
  • Select the “Update Options” button
  • If your Powerpoint is ready for updates, select the “Update Now” button
  • If you’re unsure whether or not your Powerpoint needs updating, click on the “Check for Updates” button
  • Allow your Powerpoint to update
  • Restart the application
  • Try to save the file

If none of this works, check out our last fix below.

10. The App Needs to Be Reinstalled

If your Powerpoint application is up to date, but you still believe the application is glitched, the last option is to uninstall and reinstall the application.

It’s simple:

  1. Open the “Control Panel” on your device
  2. Select “Uninstall a Program”
  3. Select “Office 355 or Microsoft 365”
  4. Select “Uninstall”
  5. Follow the on-screen prompts
  6. Restart your device
  7. Reinstall the program

To reinstall Powerpoint, you will need to have your product key or disc handy. If you do not have either of these things, you will need to purchase Powerpoint from the Microsoft website.

11. Contact Microsoft Support

If you have tried all of the solutions to a Powerpoint presentation that won’t save and are still struggling, the last option is to contact Microsoft support. Here, you can engage with an expert support team to discover what’s going haywire with your Powerpoint application and how it can be remedied.

Powerpoint Save Issues Are Common And Easily Fixed

Although many people find themselves struggling with the inability to save their Powerpoint presentations, the good news is that many problems have simple solutions. Always use uninstalling and reinstalling as the last resort, as this is the most time-consuming process out of the bunch.