How to enable disabled PowerPoint add-ins

This describes how to enable an add-in if PowerPoint ever disables one.

Computer setups these days are complicated and varied and so PowerPoint occasionally throws what is technically known – to me at least – as a ‘wobbly’. It refuses to load the add-in correctly and disables it. The following instructions for re-enabling an add-in apply to PPT 2007 onwards. The functions in PTT 2003 and earlier are similar, but they are located in the Tools > Options area.

  1. Go to the Options menu entry. (In PPT 2007 go to Office button > Preferences > Options. In 2010 and 2013, it’s File > Options.)
  2. Click on ‘Add-ins’ in the menu on the left.
  3. If you see the Add-in you installed on the list, that’s good! If not, try re-installing it after having uninstalled it first if possible.
  4. At the bottom of the box you will see a drop-down item which says ‘COM Add-ins’. Click on the drop-down (not on the Go button yet) and select ‘Disabled Items’ and then click ‘Go’.
  5. A dialog box will appear. If it lists the new Add-in, click on it, and then ‘Enable’ and ‘Close’.
  6. Now set the drop-down item back to ‘COM Add-ins’ and click ‘Go’ once more. (This process is not intuitive!) Click in the box to put a checkmark against the name of the add-in, click ‘OK’. The add-in should now appear in PowerPoint!
  7. Close and re-open PowerPoint and the add-in should still be available.
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