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Frustrating SP3, PowerPoint problem

tonypitt

Member
I have an SP3 i7 that I primarily use for lecture capture in a university classroom. When I'm doing this, I commonly will only have open on my computer PowerPoint and Camtasia Recorder. I plus a USB mic in for audio capture and connect via a dongle to the video projector.

I did this all last semester without problem. This semester, I have had two recurring problems (one is really just an annoyance).

Problem 1 (minor): When I launch PowerPoint to do the slide show, the Windows taskbar at the bottom of the screen stays in the foreground. I have to tell the system to auto-hide the taskbar. I don't have to do this with any other Windows/PowerPoint combination, except for my SP3.

Problem 2 (major): This afternoon my SP3 seemed to have a mind of its own. Periodically during the lecture--and it often happened when I was not interacting with the system at all--the video would black out for a couple of seconds (it actually looked more like a dark magenta than black) and then when the video came back the screen display was all screwed up. What should have been being projected full screen was showing in the upper left quadrant of the screen, occupying about 75% of the overall screen. The rest of the screen was showing the PowerPoint workspace (i.e. what is normally not visible when one is in presentation mode.). The only way for me to regain control and ability to ink was to close PowerPoint and reopen it. I had to do this about 10 times in the course of 2 hours. I don't think I've ever been so frustration with my SP3.

Continuing the above, when I returned to my office after class I noted that my Camtasia capture of all of this was corrupted. So, not only was my lecture severely impacted, the recording of it was unusable.

I used this system all last semester with only the occasional minor hiccup. This semester I've now had 2 instances of the above in 7 days. If this continues, I'm going to have discontinue my use of the SP3.

Anyone have any suggestions?
 

olimjj

Active Member
I have an SP3 i7 that I primarily use for lecture capture in a university classroom. When I'm doing this, I commonly will only have open on my computer PowerPoint and Camtasia Recorder. I plus a USB mic in for audio capture and connect via a dongle to the video projector.

I did this all last semester without problem. This semester, I have had two recurring problems (one is really just an annoyance).

Problem 1 (minor): When I launch PowerPoint to do the slide show, the Windows taskbar at the bottom of the screen stays in the foreground. I have to tell the system to auto-hide the taskbar. I don't have to do this with any other Windows/PowerPoint combination, except for my SP3.

Problem 2 (major): This afternoon my SP3 seemed to have a mind of its own. Periodically during the lecture--and it often happened when I was not interacting with the system at all--the video would black out for a couple of seconds (it actually looked more like a dark magenta than black) and then when the video came back the screen display was all screwed up. What should have been being projected full screen was showing in the upper left quadrant of the screen, occupying about 75% of the overall screen. The rest of the screen was showing the PowerPoint workspace (i.e. what is normally not visible when one is in presentation mode.). The only way for me to regain control and ability to ink was to close PowerPoint and reopen it. I had to do this about 10 times in the course of 2 hours. I don't think I've ever been so frustration with my SP3.

Continuing the above, when I returned to my office after class I noted that my Camtasia capture of all of this was corrupted. So, not only was my lecture severely impacted, the recording of it was unusable.

I used this system all last semester with only the occasional minor hiccup. This semester I've now had 2 instances of the above in 7 days. If this continues, I'm going to have discontinue my use of the SP3.

Anyone have any suggestions?

Problem #1 Is the taskbar also locked in addition to the autohide. ? Having it unlocked can sometime cause a problem.
Problem #2 Assuming no other resident or open applications / programs / file scanners to interfere with the process you might want to reinvestigate your computer to projector interface and settings if you have not already done so.
 
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tonypitt

Member
Can you elaborate more on #2. What needs to be investigated and how. (I don't need minor details, but I'm not sure what you are suggesting I check.)
 

olimjj

Active Member
Can you elaborate more on #2. What needs to be investigated and how. (I don't need minor details, but I'm not sure what you are suggesting I check.)
The physical connection points on each device and the cables themselves , including power cables for any looseness or overall wear. Do you have any alternates to swap out. Any looseness in your electrical power outlets supplying power. Each projector has its own set of proper settings. You might want to check if any of these setting have changed. Is this unit used by others?
 

JohnR

New Member
I think olimjj suggested to start Task Manager and confirm that only processes running are PowerPoint and Camtasia. Wonder if you update Office or Camtasia recently. I would try to uninstall Camtasia, run Windows 8.1 update and then install Camtasia back. Another option you may try to uninstall Camtasia and install Jing which is a free utility from the same people which created Camtasia. If this combination works fine then you probably need to contact Camtasia TS and ask for help. Actually it is a good idea to contact Camtasia TS before you waste a lot of time trying to establish what is breaking your SP3. They may have similar issues already reported and fix already in place :)
 
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tonypitt

Member
Olimjj, thank you, I follow you now. The projection device is one that is permanently mounted and professionally cabled. It is used by a wide array of people. I don't think the problem would be with the projector. I will check its various menu settings tomorrow to see if there seems to be something unusual in its configuration.
 
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tonypitt

Member
JohnR, ok, I follow your advice, but given that I used this exact same software approximately 75 times last semester, I'm not sure that I suspect Camtasia as being the problem. It has not been updated since I started using it last semester.
 

JohnR

New Member
I'm not saying that Camtasia is the source of the problem and before you do anything please contact Camtasia Technical Support and see what they would suggest.
 

jnjroach

Administrator
Staff member
Problem 2 (major): This afternoon my SP3 seemed to have a mind of its own. Periodically during the lecture--and it often happened when I was not interacting with the system at all--the video would black out for a couple of seconds (it actually looked more like a dark magenta than black) and then when the video came back the screen display was all screwed up. What should have been being projected full screen was showing in the upper left quadrant of the screen, occupying about 75% of the overall screen. The rest of the screen was showing the PowerPoint workspace (i.e. what is normally not visible when one is in presentation mode.). The only way for me to regain control and ability to ink was to close PowerPoint and reopen it. I had to do this about 10 times in the course of 2 hours. I don't think I've ever been so frustration with my SP3.

Roll back the video driver back to either August or March's version or you can try to do this:

In PowerPoint - Slide Show Tab - Setup Slide Show check the box circled below:

upload_2015-1-27_13-52-45.png
 

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