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Get More SmartArt Graphics

Learn how you can get more SmartArt graphic variants.


Product/Version: Microsoft PowerPoint (all versions)

When Microsoft introduced SmartArt as part of Office 2007, it essentially created one of the most welcomed and used features in all of Microsoft Office programs. People loved this feature, and you will still find that so many users are amazed by the fact that you can convert some bulleted text on a PowerPoint slide into a graphic with one click!

In addition to creating SmartArt, and including a bunch of some great variants out of the box, Microsoft also created a way for individuals and developers to create their own custom SmartArt Layout files. These new SmartArt Layouts with the file extension, GLOX could drop into a designated folder, and this simple action would result in additional SmartArt graphics being available.

Unfortunately there was no rush of customized SmartArt graphics, and also, there was no clamor for more and more SmartArt graphics! Why did this happen?

This happened because creating SmartArt graphics on your own was not as simple as you may think. Very few additional SmartArt graphics have been created by third-party vendors yet, and that explains why most users are not aware that extra SmartArt graphics are an available option!

We started looking for online sources for GLOX files, and it seems that the offerings are very thin indeed. One site that did have some GLOX files was the Loki3 Diagrams site (see Figure 1, below), which has provided all their GLOX content under the Creative Commons license.

Download some SmartArt GLOX files
Figure 1: Download some SmartArt GLOX files

Thereafter, follow these steps:

  1. First close all Microsoft Office programs if they are open.
  2. Thereafter copy the downloaded GLOX files to the relevant folder.

    The GLOX files that you download need to be placed within a particular folder. This folder differs depending upon your version of the Windows or the Mac Operating System:

    Windows Vista and Later:
    \SmartArt Graphics

    Windows XP:
    \\Documents and Settings\\<Username>\Application Data
    \Microsoft\Templates\SmartArt Graphics

    Mac OS X:
    Macintosh HD:Users:<Username>:Library:Application Support:
    Microsoft:Office:SmartArt Graphics
  3. Then launch PowerPoint or any other required Microsoft Office program.
  4. Now, when you insert a SmartArt graphic, and bring up the Choose a SmartArt Graphic dialog box, you will find a new SmartArt type named Other within the Sidebar, as shown highlighted in red within Figure 2, below. Click on Other and you will be able to access all new SmartArt graphics you just downloaded and copied, as shown highlighted in blue within Figure 2.

    Other SmartArt type within the Choose a SmartArt Graphic dialog box in PowerPoint 2013
    Figure 2: Other SmartArt type within the Choose a SmartArt Graphic dialog box in PowerPoint 2013
  5. Just click on the required SmartArt graphic to insert it within your slide (or even a document or sheet).
Note: Did you get any error message when you summon Choose a SmartArt Graphic dialog box? The reason behind the error message might be a GLOX file that is not downloaded properly, or even corrupted. Note down the name(s) of the GLOX file(s), shown in the error message, download them again, and copy them to the required folder.

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