Creating and Using Chart Templates
Think of chart templates as saving your chart formatting in case you want to apply it to another chart.
A chart template is actually a file (.crtx) that is saved onto your hard drive. The format is a package containing XML that describes the content of the chart.
Creating a Template
To create a chart template, do the following:
- Create a chart.
- Format it any way that you want.
- Select the Design tab under the Chart Tools area of the Ribbon.
- Select the Save As Template option (see Figure 6.11).
Figure 6.11 The Save As Template option allows you to save a chart template of your own and use it again later.
- Choose a name and location to save the .crtx file.
Using an Existing Template
After you have templates at your disposal, you can use them in two ways:
- After you create a chart, you can select a chart template for the type that it should be.
- With an existing chart, you can change its type to be that of a chart template.
When you first insert a chart from scratch in PowerPoint, the top option on the left pane is Templates (refer to Figure 6.2). When Templates is selected, the right pane contains all the chart templates located in the default Chart Template folder (C:\Documents and Settings\<User Name>\Application Data\Microsoft\Templates). Select one of the templates, and your newly inserted chart is given the same formatting and design as the template you saved.
Similarly, to change the type of an existing chart to that of one of your chart templates, do the following:
- With the chart selected, click the Design tab under Chart Tools.
- Select Change Chart Type from the Type group.
- Select Templates from the left pane.
- Select a template from the right pane.
The template's formatting is applied to the selected chart.
This option is mostly for convenience, used for finding the folder in which templates are stored by default. It launches the directory containing the chart templates that is found by default at C:\Documents and Settings\<User Name>\Application Data\Microsoft\Templates. This happens in a separate Windows Explorer window for convenience.
You can access the Manage Templates feature from the Insert Chart dialog.