What is a .PPTX file?

A file with the .PPTX extension is a Microsoft PowerPoint slideshow presentation. To manage the wide range of text, video, animation and graphics that modern slideshow creators expect, PPTX uses Open XML format. PPTX became the native file type for Microsoft Office PowerPoint in 2007.

What does .PPTX stand for?

PPTX stands for PowerPoint (the same as the earlier native file, PPT) with an X on the end to refer to the upgraded ‘Open XML’ system.

Microsoft took a similar approach to other files with the release of Office 2007, including Word’s DOCX upgrade, which largely replaced the DOC format.

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History of the .PPTX file.

Early designs.

In 1984, the product developer Robert Gaskins developed an idea for new graphic software for Macintosh computers. The project name went through a number of refinements - ranging from the unimaginative ‘Presentation Graphics for Overhead Projection’, through to ‘Presenter’. By 1987, Gaskins and his team has settled on the name that stuck: PowerPoint.

Three months after launch, Microsoft bought PowerPoint’s manufacturer and added the software to its roster of programmes, which were set to dominate the 1990s. Along with other famous names such as Word and Excel, PowerPoint joined the Office suite in 1995 - and Microsoft introduced the PPT native file format in 1997.

The PPT file had its advantages - but its binary native file format became too large and sluggish by the mid-00s. In 2007, Microsoft replaced the PPT file in favour of PPTX - upgrading the file to Open XML format.

The launch of .PPTX.

In XML, PPTX could compartmentalise multimedia into different files and then zip them for easy transfer and storage. Throughout the 2010s, this would prove crucial - as creators and audiences expected increasingly elaborate and visually stimulating decks, as well as seamless use across different platforms and devices.

Throughout the 2010s, Microsoft upgraded PowerPoint and PPTX to handle the modern, mobile world of computing, introducing web versions, smartphone apps, streaming capabilities and more, as well as a handy reader mode.

The continued upgrades and innovations in PowerPoint have paid off. Today, over 95% of presentations are a PowerPoint, with 500 million people across the globe using the software.

What are .PPTX files used for?

PPTX files are designed specifically for PowerPoint presentations. Within this field, they have a number of key uses.

Creating and editing PowerPoint slides.

When you select File > Open > Blank Presentation on PowerPoint, you create a PPTX file by default. From there, you can select and arrange text, images, animations, video and formatting or use a range of templates to bring your presentation to life.

Storing, saving and transferring PowerPoint presentations.

PPTX uses Open XML mark-up language to make these multimedia files less cumbersome. It stores data in separate folders for theme, slides, slide layouts, presentation props and more. These are zipped together into a single folder to save space - marking a departure from the PPT file, which stored data in a single binary file.

Pros and cons of .PPTX files.


  • Multimedia storage. PPTX helps users add rich visuals, text and multimedia elements to their decks, with less data. To do this, the format relies on a range of TXT, XML and other folders, which handle presentation properties, slide notes and multimedia. These are archived in a zip folder.
  • Smaller file size. The zipped sub-files of PPTX make them far smaller than their forerunner: the PPT file. As a result, they take up less space on your hard-drive and are easier to transfer.
  • Choice of software. Even if you don’t have Microsoft PowerPoint, you can still view PPTX files on a range of different applications. There are also a number of third-party programs you can use to edit and present your deck.


  • Not supported on older versions of PowerPoint. If you have a pre-2007 version of Microsoft PowerPoint, you won’t be able to open PPTX files.
  • Not fully compatible with third-party software. Though you can view, edit and present your PPTX files on different applications, it’s worth noting that you may have limited functionality and some complex designs or animations may not display correctly.

How to open a .PPTX file.

The best programme to open a PPTX file with is Microsoft PowerPoint. This provides full support for your presentation’s formatting.


  1. Open PowerPoint
  2. Select File > Open
  3. Choose your file from your desktop.

You can also open PPTX files with programmes like Apple Keynote and the Google Slides. To open your slideshow on Google Slides, you’ll need to upload your file to Google Drive and then select it from there.

How to create and edit a .PPTX file.

You can create and edit a PPTX file on PowerPoint simply by selecting File>Open>New Slideshow.

If you’re a Mac user, you can simply double click your PPTX file to open it on Keynote.

To create and edit a PPTX file on Google Slides:

  1. Open Google Slides
  2. Create a blank presentation
  3. Design your slideshow
  4. When you’re happy, select File > Download > PowerPoint PPTX.

How do I open .PPTX in PDF?

You can convert your PPTX to PDF in seconds using Adobe Acrobat online. Simply drag your PPTX presentation into our free converter tool and let it work its magic.

In a few moments, you can save your new PDF file to your desktop - or use editing tools to reorder, extract and add pages.

Learn more about similar file types to .PPTX.


PPT is the forerunner file type to the PPTX and shops data in a binary format, rather than XML.


A report file used for a range of data-orientated tasks, including payroll, sales and inventory.


DAT files contain specific information about the software used to create them.


A standard file for storing and sharing contact information.

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Why is my .PPTX file not opening?

There are a number of reasons why your PPTX file might not be opening. For example, you might be using the wrong software or you may have saved your file in an incorrect format. Your file may also be corrupted. It is worth checking through these various possibilities - and potentially converting to a more widely readable format such as PDF, if possible.

How do I view and open a .PPTX file without PowerPoint?

You can view and open PPTX files on a range of different third-party programmes, including Google Slides, Mac Keynote and more. It’s worth noting that you may not have full editing and formatting compatibility with non-PowerPoint programmes, however.

What is the difference between a .PPTX and a .PPT file?

A PPTX file is an upgraded version of the earlier PPT file. It stores data in zipped files using the Open XML mark-up language, rather than in a single binary file.

Is a PowerPoint .PPT or .PPTX?

PPTX is the native file format for PowerPoint since the launch of Microsoft Office 2007. Prior to that, PPT files were default on the programme. So, most modern day PowerPoint files will be PPTX, but it is possible that a very old presentation or a file created using older software, may still be PPT.