This is the print version of this page. All content is copyright 2000- .

This presentation cannot be edited because it contains a read-only embedded font

Monday, September 06, 2004
posted by Geetesh on 9:37 AM IST

Let us assume you received or created a presentation in a version earlier than PowerPoint 2003 for Windows (97, 2000, 2002). You probably have fonts embedded within the presentation.

Now you open it in PowerPoint 2003 and you find you cannot edit the presentation. PowerPoint tells you that "This presentation cannot be edited because it contains a read-only embedded font".

Why does this happen? Is there a solution?

Let's start at the very beginning by discussing font licensing. Fonts are created by various companies (also known as font foundries). Some of these companies do not mind if their fonts are embedded in presentations - others do not like that idea too much. To identify which fonts allows embedding or otherwise, most fonts have some code attached to them which allows an application to know whether the font can be embedded or not. If you want to know if a particular font allows embedding, you can download Microsoft's free Font Properties Extension.

PowerPoint on Windows has always enabled font embedding and versions before 2003 allowed you to open and view presentations even if you did not have the actual restricted and embedded fonts installed on a local machine. You could then replace the fonts and edit the presentation as required - and finally save the presentation to a new file.

In PowerPoint 2003, Microsoft implemented an algorithm that does not allow you to edit any presentation that contains a restricted, embedded font that is not installed on your system. You cannot even replace the fonts and save a presentation to a new file.

Not surprisingly, this creates so many issues for users of PowerPoint everywhere.

Here are some solutions:

1. Open the presentation again in PowerPoint 97, 2000 or 2002 and remove the "font embedding" option. Also change the font to something more generic using the Format | Replace Fonts... option. Resave to a new presentation. If you do not have access to an older version of PowerPoint, request a friend or colleague to do it for you.

2. If you have an older version of PowerPoint on CD-ROM, you can install more than one version of PowerPoint on the same system. The only caveat apart from using extra hard disk space is that you will have to uninstall Office (or PowerPoint) 2003, then install the older version. Then reinstall PowerPoint 2003. This way you have access to more than one version of PowerPoint on a single system.

3. If you own a license for the missing font, install it on your PowerPoint 2003 equipped system.

Related Links:

You Cannot Edit or Save a PowerPoint Presentation if It Contains an Embedded Read Only Fonts


16 November 2004. We were unable to find any "read only imbedded fonts" in the problem powerpoints - so we are not sure this is the only problem.

We appeared to solve the problem by doing an un-install of Powerpoint 2003 SP1 ONLY. We then did a typical install of Powerpoint 2002 ONLY. We then did a re-install of Powerpoint 2003 SP1 ONLY using the original media. The problem disappears.

We also believe that this problem ONLY applies to new installs of Powerpoint 2003. Any systems with upgrades from 2002 to 2003 do not have the problem.

Posted by Anonymous Anonymous on 9:06 AM
Permalink to this comment


I wasn't aware of this problem when I saved my powerpoint for an important presentation. I open it to add in the slides from my group members only to find that it won't let me edit. It won't let me import. It won't let me do a fricking thing. And here I am with less than an hour to fix this and no available copies of powerpoint <2003. Thank you microshaft.

Posted by Anonymous Anonymous on 8:38 PM
Permalink to this comment


The fix for this issue is to update your 2003 office installation to SP2.

Posted by Anonymous Anonymous on 3:13 PM
Permalink to this comment



Posted by Anonymous Anonymous on 3:13 PM
Permalink to this comment


Post a Comment


July 2004  |   August 2004  |   September 2004  |   May 2005  |   June 2005  |   July 2005  |   November 2005  |   February 2006  |   April 2006  |   June 2006  |   September 2006  |   October 2006  |   December 2006  |   February 2007  |   May 2007  |   August 2007  |   November 2007  |   February 2008  |   October 2008  |   June 2009  |   November 2009  |   January 2010  |   August 2010  |   October 2010  |   November 2010  |   December 2010  |   February 2012  |   August 2012  |   October 2012  |   August 2014  |   January 2016  |   May 2016  |   June 2016  |  

Microsoft and the Office logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries.

Home | PowerPoint | Photoshop | PowerPoint Templates | PowerPoint Tutorials | Blog | Notes | Ezine | Advertise | Feedback | Site Map | About Us | Contact Us

Link to Us | Privacy | Testimonials

PowerPoint Backgrounds | Christian PowerPoint Backgrounds | Business PowerPoint Presentation Templates

Plagiarism will be detected by Copyscape

©2000-2016, Geetesh Bajaj. All rights reserved.

since November 02, 2000