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I was able in the past to double click on a PowerPoint arrow/line in order to add a caption to the line. This is not working in PP 2010.

Anyone knows a way to add text to a line ? (without creating a group with a text box and a line)

PS: I'm not totally sure about being able to do it. I have the feeling that I was double clicking on line to have text next to it on a 2003 version.

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What version of PowerPoint were you using when you were able to do this? – wizlog Dec 8 '11 at 17:46
@wizlog I misread. carry on! – studiohack Dec 8 '11 at 18:14
@studiohack I think I remember posting a comment before... Did you delete it? – wizlog Dec 8 '11 at 20:28
yes, I did @wizlog. – studiohack Dec 8 '11 at 20:32
I thought I was going crazy(er)... – wizlog Dec 8 '11 at 20:33
up vote 9 down vote accepted

You may've used one of the arrow autoshapes, but regular lines (and lines with arrowheads) have never allowed this. Under the hood, most shapes have what's called a "text frame", which is PowerPoint's container for text associated with that shape. Lines and arrows don't have a text frame and so can't contain text.

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Shapes such as squares, circles, callout balloons, and block arrows* can contain text. When you type text into a shape, the text attaches to the shape and moves and rotates with it.

  • To add text that becomes part of a shape, select the shape, and then type or paste text.

If you need any additonal help, or want to see how I came up with my answer, you can watch the video on this site, and/or look at this Microosft Help and How-To

*To add a block arrow, use Insert->Shapes->Block Arrows (PowerPoint 2010 and later).

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What are block arrows ? How to create them ? – Guillaume Dec 9 '11 at 9:36
From the "Insert" ribbon tab, select "Shapes" from the "Illustration" section, you should find block arrows available. I'm using PowerPoint 2013 – Rob Bowman Oct 1 '14 at 14:54

In PP2007 and PP2010 you can add text to lines that connect boxes within certain SmartArt objects such as a Horizontal Hierarchy diagram. The text is automatically rotated to align with the direction of the connecting line. To do this, create a Horizontal Hierarchy SmartArt object, define two or more hierarchical entries, then click on one of the lines connecting the hierarchical boxes and start typing.

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I suggest using the technique explained on this page: create a text box with the connector text you'd like to write and link both of the original objects to either side of this new text box.

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Can you layout the steps form that page? – Canadian Luke Apr 30 '15 at 17:40

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