What I want is exactly what's in this post, but for PowerPoint for Mac (Office 365) instead of Windows. I want this to happen each time I open Powerpoint without having to double click on a template file. enter image description here

Here are the directions from that site for Mac PowerPoint 2016 (the closest I saw to the Office 365 version). The bold italics part indicates where the instructions fell short for me:

Mac PowerPoint 2016 To save a default template for PowerPoint 2016, set up your formatting, masters, etc. the way you want them and then save the presentation as Default Theme.thmx. As soon as you choose Office Theme (.thmx) next to Format, PowerPoint should automatically set the save-as location to the correct folder, but make sure it does before saving:

MacintoshHD:Users::Library:Group Containers:UBF8T346G9.Office:User Content:Themes

The animated gif below shows an attempt to follow their detailed directions . enter image description here It's not made clear whether "and then save" means one should save as a theme or as a template or...? I tried saving as a template in the animated gif since that's the type of file I'd just been asked to make (I acknowledge I was in uncertain territory at this point...) But the program did not permit me to save with the .thmx extension, as instructed. So the instructions seem inadequate. When trying to save a template, it automatically takes you to the Templates folder, so the animated gif shows that. But I also had a similar problem when trying to save in the Themes folder, which is demonstrated in the image below. I tried to work around this behavior by manually changing extension in the Finder, but the final result didn't match what I want. enter image description here

So I feel that I've been led on a wild goose chase by this answer, and wasted a lot of time. But I hope at least my record of it will help someone in a similar situation.

This question remains unanswered.

  • I have removed your comment about the 'advertising' as it is not part of your question. For anyone interested, please see: meta.superuser.com/questions/12993/… Mar 27, 2018 at 18:19
  • Thank you. I'm glad you did. Now I know how to deal with this situation in the future.
    – Tony M
    Mar 27, 2018 at 18:41

3 Answers 3


By the looks of it, you actually want to use Save as... and then choose the .thmx format from the File Format dropdown.

In your GIF example, you are choosing Save as Template..., which is going to create something exactly like what you say you don't want.

  • There is no ".thmx" option in "Save As..." in the version of PowerPoint I am using -- or at least I can't find it. Can you explain? What version of PowerPoint are you using? As stated in the original question, I'm PowerPoint in Office 365 in Mac OS.
    – Tony M
    Jul 12 at 2:48

Hope this helps someone. I'm on Mac PPT 2011. The location of the default theme file (Default Theme.thmx) on my Mac is Library/Application Support/Microsoft/Office/User Templates/My Themes. I did as described, opening a blank document, deleted unwanted items and saved as Default.thmx from the Themes ribbon, overwriting the file that was already in the above location. That's got rid of the unwanted text boxes in new ppt slides, now I need to figure out how to change the default fonts/styles.

  • 1
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    – Community Bot
    Sep 29 at 15:13

Came across this question today and found the solution for Mac PowerPoint 2021.

The way to do this is to use the Ribbon > View > Slide Master. Delete everything, including the sub-slides with headers, footers, different layouts.

Once you are done, save this as the Default theme "Default Theme.thmx", replace the current one. Now you're done.

My sense is that a lot of people use PowerPoint as a scratchpad and visual clipboard so you don't want the layout boxes to be in the way if you just want to have a quick scribble. If you still want to work on a real presentation, in the Ribbon, go to Design > Drop down on the themes box > Pick Office theme. You'll get back that original theme with the pre-set layouts.

Here's a gif with all the scenarios I listed above: https://i.stack.imgur.com/cmnNs.gif

  • Thank for responding, however, similar to what I described in the original post this response also sent me on a wild goose chase and did not answer my question. At least in Mac OS running PowerPoint 16.74 (Office 365) there is no "Default.thmx" -- or at least I can't find it. If you study the .gif screen recording I posted originally, it seems template files are used (.potx) instead, and as I wrote in the original post, I already know how to use templates and want another way to do this.
    – Tony M
    Jul 11 at 18:06
  • Yep - my fix here works for PowerPoint for Mac Version 16.75 (23070901) FWIW. Your post helped me figure out a solution on my end so I wanted to pay it forward for whoever is using my office version, which I believe is the latest, so probably a decent group.
    – Yan Sim
    Jul 12 at 19:11

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