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FIX: The presentation cannot be opened [Antivirus error]


In the Protection section there are a Quick Scan and Vulnerability Scan options.

The Quick Scan option will perform a brief scan of your system and find any potential threats. As for Vulnerability Scan, it can scan your system and check if you have critical Windows updates installed.

In addition, it will also check if your applications are up to date. This feature can also check for weak Windows account passwords and check your Wi-Fi network for vulnerabilities.



3. Recover your files if infected or damaged

how to fix antivirus blocking powerpoint recover
  1. Delete the file from your system
  2. Re-create the file or restore it from a backup if you have one.
  3. If the file is damaged, then it cannot be correctly managed or handled either by the antivirus or Office. In order to use the file again, try and recover it.

Symptoms of a damaged file give back errors when trying to open the presentation such as:

  • This is not a PowerPoint presentation
  • PowerPoint cannot open the type of file represented by ppt
  • Part of the file is missing
  • General Protection Fault
  • Illegal Instruction
  • Invalid Page Fault
  • Low system resources
  • Out of memory

There are several ways to determine whether your presentation is damaged, including opening the file on another computer and see if the same behavior occurs, or try and create a new file and see if it persists.

Note: not all programs have file repair or recovery capabilities.


4. Try a temporary file version of the presentation

  1. Right click the file
  2. Select Rename
  3. Change old file name extension from .tmp to .pptx
  4. Start PowerPoint
  5. In PowerPoint, click File, then select Open
  6. Browse to the folder that has the renamed file
  7. Try opening it in PowerPoint

When you edit a PowerPoint presentation, the program creates a temporary version or copy of the file, named PPT####.tmp (#### represents a random four digit number).

If you find several corresponding files, try opening each to see if one is the temporary copy of your presentation. When issues arise with your presentation, the temporary file remains in the saved file location.

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This temporary version or copy of the presentation may be in the same folder as the original presentation, or in the temporary files folder.

Note: If there are no temporary files or copies of your presentation, or they can’t open when you try opening them, try opening using PowerPoint Viewer as described in the next solution.


5. Use PowerPoint Viewer

antivirus blocking PowerPoint
  1. Open Microsoft Edge or Internet Explorer
  2. Go to Microsoft (for PowerPoint 2007 Viewer) or to this support page (for PowerPoint 2010 Viewer)
  3. Click Download to install PowerPoint viewer
  4. Click Run
  5. Click to select Click here to accept the Microsoft Software License Terms box
  6. Click Continue
  7. Click OK, if prompted for an admin confirmation, type the password, or click Yes
  8. Open the damaged presentation in PowerPoint viewer by clicking Start-All Apps-Microsoft Office PowerPoint Viewer, then click Accept
  9. Click on the damaged presentation and click Open. If it opens in PowerPoint Viewer, then the copy of PowerPoint on your computer may be damaged.

6. Make a copy of the damaged presentation

fix power point presentation not working
  • Right click on the presentation
  • Select Copy
  • Go to File Explorer and right click on a blank space and click Paste

If the file cannot be copied, it may be damaged, or resides in a damaged part of the hard disk (see solution 6). If you can copy the file, try opening it in PowerPoint.


7. Run Scandisk on your hard drive

antivirus blocking PowerPoint
  1. Exit all open programs
  2. Click Start
  3. Select File Explorer
  4. Right click the hard disk drive that has the damaged presentation
  5. Click Properties
  6. Select Tools tab
  7. In Error checking, click Check
  8. Select Automatically fix file system errors
  9. Select Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors
  10. Click Start

Note: Scandisk may verify that your presentation is cross-linked, then repairs the presentation, but this doesn’t guarantee it will be read by PowerPoint.


Deliver your best presentation by using a professional presentation software audience


8. Perform a Clean Boot

  1. Go to the search box
  2. Type msconfig
  3. Select System Configuration
  4. Find Services tab
  1. Select Hide all Microsoft services box
  2. Click Disable all
  3. Go to Startup tab
  4. Click Open Task Manager
  5. Close Task manager then click Ok
  6. Reboot your computer

You will have a clean boot environment after all these steps are carefully followed, after which you can try and check if you can perform a system restore.

After performing the clean boot, do the following three things:

  1. Install, uninstall antivirus program
  2. Run PowerPoint application
  3. Fix an error or problem, in this case to fix antivirus blocking PowerPoint
  4. Reset the computer to start normally after clean boot process

While your computer is in a clean boot environment, try to install or uninstall the program (antivirus), or an update of it, which you had tried before clean boot but failed.

If successful, the issue has been resolved. But, if it fails, then the antivirus blocking PowerPoint issue isn’t caused by an app or service interference.

If you could not run PowerPoint before the clean boot, try and run it again while in clean boot environment. If it runs correctly, or your presentation opens, then the issue is caused by an app or service interference.

If you manage to boot in Safe Mode, perform a clean boot to eliminate any software conflicts that may be causing the antivirus blocking system restore problem in Windows 10.

Performing a clean boot for your computer reduces conflicts related to software that can bring up the root causes of the problem. These conflicts can be caused by applications and services that start up and run in the background whenever you start Windows normally.

Follow the next step described below on how to fix an error or problem after a clean boot.

In order to determine what is causing the antivirus blocking PowerPoint problem after a clean boot, do the following:

  1. Log on using the administrator account
  2. Click Start
  3. In the search box, type msconfig
  4. Select System Configuration from the results
  5. In the System Configuration box, click Services tab
  6. Click to check the Hide all Microsoft Services box
system config powerpoint troubleshooting
  1. Click to select the upper half of the boxes in the Service list
  2. Click OK, and then click Restart
  3. After the restart is complete, check if the antivirus blocking PowerPoint issue persists.

If the problem persists, repeat the above steps but this time clear the lower half of the boxes in the Service list you selected before.

If the problem goes away, repeat the above steps but only select the upper half of the boxes that are unchecked, and repeat the steps until you have selected all boxes.

If the antivirus blocking PowerPoint problem persists when only one service is selected from the Service list, then that is the service causing the problem, after which you can contact the program manufacturer to see if this can be resolved.

Alternatively, run System Configuration utility then click to clear the checkbox for the problem item. Reset the computer to start normally after clean boot process

Once you’re done from the clean boot environment, here’s how to reset your computer to start normally:

  1. Click Start
  2. Go to the search box and type msconfig
fix powerpoint can't be opened msconfig
  1. Select System Configuration
  2. Go to the General tab
  3. Click Normal startup
  4. Click Services tab
  5. Uncheck the box beside Hide all Microsoft services
  6. Click Enable all
  7. Click Startup tab
startup powerpoint error
  1. Click Open Task Manager
  2. In Task Manager, enable all your startup programs
  3. Click OK, if prompted to restart, click Restart

Have any of the solutions here helped fix the antivirus blocking PowerPoint issue? Let us know in the comments section below.

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This post was written by Milan Stanojevic and was first posted to WindowsReport

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