Linked Layers


ProShow has a unique ability to link layers together. This feature is used in styles and templates. It reveals itself when one duplicate image layer is replaced (via select or by a drag-and-drop). Upon changing one layer’s content, the content of all duplicate layers is also replaced.

NOTE: This is NOT the same type of linking typically associated with modifiers. In that case, actions cause a subordinate layer’s function setting to react to or mirror a master layer’s setting. In a linked layer case, only the layer content is linked to another layer. The layer’s settings are irrelevant.

If you wanted to use a different image for one of those duplicate images, however, you are out of luck. That is because there is no direct way to break the link between those layers. If you duplicated one of those layers, the linkage to the other similar layers remains. But, all is not lost. For those times when you must remove the link between one or more of those linked layers and rebuilding the style’s effect is not an option, what can you do?

The only other option that you have is to directly edit the show’s PSH file. Each of these files is ASCII (text) format. So edit it with a text editor. If a word processor is used, make sure to save the edited file in ASCII format. Always WORK ON A DUPLICATE PSH file. That way, recovering from a mistake is easy. Otherwise, the mistake(s) may result in a PSH file that ProShow cannot read.


  • Make no add/delete/modify of any line until you know exactly what you are doing.
  • ProShow starts its counting from 0, not 1.
  • A slide is referred to as a “cell.” Each “cell” is followed by a bracketed number. So, cell[18] refers to slide 19.
  • Each layer is referred to as “images” (which are either photos, graphics, solid layers, or gradients layers). Like cells, images are identified by a bracketed number.


(See the following section on how to edit or peruse a PSH file: PSH File editing, page 36).  Do not edit the original PSH file if you can help it. If the wrong content is changed, you may no longer have a valid ProShow slideshow file.

Layers are linked to another layer by the following code in the show’s PSH file:


Where templateImageId is the ProShow function that identifies a link and #### is a unique ID number (which may have a positive or negative value).

All “images[xx]” that have the same templateImageId number are “linked.” If more than one set of linked layers exists, each set will have a different template image id number.

An example of a linked set of layers is as follows



In this example, layers 1 and 10 on slide 19 are linked. Replace one of the linked image layers with a different image and the other is automatically replaced as well. While it is NOT advisable, note that it IS possible to link layers across multiple slides. That way, all such linked layers in a show may be changed at once.

Knowing how a layer is linked to one or more layers means that you now also know how to unlink them.

© 20130408 Dale Fenimore, All Rights Reserved


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