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Microsoft PowerPoint has the ability to play some video files embedded within a presentation, and others only by linking to a file. If the file is not supported, it may be possible to link to the video as described under “Hyperlinking to a video clip” in Microsoft PowerPoint – Adding Video.
flv (Flash) :
Flash is not natively supported, but can be accomplished with the aid of directions from Macromedia.
mov (QuickTime) :
Supported up to version on Windows
Subsequent versions not supported on Windows
All versions supported on OS X
MPEG is supported
MPEG is supported on Vista only and may require a rd party plugin on XP or OS X
Not Supported on OS X or Windows
Supported on Windows
Supported on OS X with the FlipMac codec
Powerpoint Supported Video Formats
For PowerPoint and earlier I recommend that you stick with wmv. It offers the best quality and compact file size. PowerPoint also supports uncompressed avi, but the quality of such files is low and the file sizes are large.
Mac PowerPoint users should install FlipMac (free from flipmac.com) so that they can play wmv files. Mac PowerPoint supports many more audio and video formats – everything that QuickTime supports including mov mp gp and other popular formats.
Windows PowerPoint will support these additional formats when PowerPoint becomes available the first half of .
To include a movie or video clip in a PowerPoint presentation, you simply click ‘Insert’, click on ‘movies and sounds’, then click ‘movie from file’.
Keep in mind that PowerPoint only recognizes MP, AVI and few other file formats so if you cannot add a video because it is FLV or some other unrecognized media type, then you simply download a video format converter, to convert the file to a recognized format.
An .avi should run perfectly. As far as I’m concerned, it’s always the safest file format to use in PowerPoint.
Source(s): MCAS PowerPoint