Hyperlinked AVIs and PowerPoint 2003

In my new life as PowerPoint 2003 flunky, I experience many and exciting adventures! My latest adventure involved hyperlinking AVI movies (encoded with the MS-MPEG4 codec) to images in a PowerPoint presentation. Clicking on the hyperlinks would result in a “Media Player” dialog box popping up with the helpful message “There is no driver installed on your system”. After clicking OK, the movie would play perfectly in spite of the awful implications of having no driver installed on my system.

You probably can’t guess what the solution was.

It turns out that renaming the linked AVI file to have an .MPG extension (and re-doing the hyperlink accordingly) makes this problem go away. I believe this is what’s called “Redmond Logic(tm)”. :)