When you open Microsoft PowerPoint, slide thumbnails are displayed in the left pane by default. PowerPoint allows you to hide, show, or even resize these thumbnails. Here’s how.

Manage slide thumbnails

Everyone has their own style of work. Some may prefer to save slide thumbnails to create an outline, or to easily move between slides as changes are made. However, some may find them distracting or intrusive and as such would like to hide or reduce their size. Both are relatively easy to complete.

Go ahead and open PowerPoint. By default, you should be in PowerPoint’s «Normal» view mode. If not, go to the «View» tab and click the «Normal» button.

normal view in powerpoint

While in normal view, slide thumbnails will appear on the left side of the window.

slide preview

To reduce the thumbnail size, click and drag the separator bar to the left.

GIF reduce thumbnail size

The further to the left you drag the divider, the smaller the images shrink. To completely hide the thumbnails, drag the bar to the left until they disappear.

GIF Hide Thumbnails

If you’ve hidden the thumbnails but need to show them again, click the arrow above «Thumbnails» on the left side.

GIF Show thumbnails

To increase the size of the slide thumbnails, click and drag the separator bar to the right.

GIF increase thumbnail size

Another quick way to resize thumbnails is to hover over the thumbnail preview pane and then use the mouse scroll wheel while holding down the Ctrl key. However, you cannot completely hide thumbnails with this method.

Change the default PowerPoint view

If you frequently hide slide thumbnails when working in PowerPoint, consider changing the default view in which PowerPoint opens.

To do this, go to the «File» tab and select «Options» at the bottom of the left pane.

PowerPoint Options

The PowerPoint Options window opens. Select Advanced.

advanced PowerPoint options

Scroll down to the «Display» section and then select the arrow next to «Open all documents using this view» to display the menu options.

change default view

From the menu, select the presentation style you want to use as the default. There are many different options to choose from, some of which do not include slide thumbnails.

select view style

Finally, click OK to confirm the change. PowerPoint will open in the selected view style the next time you use it.

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