QuickHelp offers closed-captioning language support for any video assets related to Office 2013 or newer. But what about custom content that you upload? How can you get QuickHelp to use closed-captioning for these videos? Or what if you want to upload your own version of an already translated video?

It all starts with a .vtt file.

What is a .vtt file?

A Web Video Text Track file (.vtt), sometimes called a WebVTT is a text-based file that can be included with a video file for closed captioning purposes. Being able to translate the video into one’s primary language can significantly improve the end user experience.

When adding a video file to QuickHelp, you can include a .vtt in the language(s) of your choice. In addition to you adding closed captions in that language, QuickHelp will translate your videos into other languages automatically.

What does a .vtt file look like?

A .vtt has a very specific format. If the file does not exactly match this format, it will fail to upload into QuickHelp.

How can I create a .vtt file?

Anyone can create a .vtt with no additional software needed. However, there are services and software solutions available which will make creating one much easier, especially if you have several you want to create. If you want to do it manually, here are a few steps to make a .vtt yourself.

NOTE: Exported transcripts from Stream videos are supported, without needing any additional formatting. 

  1. Launch a text editor (Notepad, Notepad++, etc.) 
  2. At the top of the file, type WEBVTT
  3. Press Enter twice (two line breaks)
    There must be one blank line (a full line break) between each section of the .vtt. 
  4. Each section must be numerically ordered (1, 2, 3, etc.). Start with 1.
    Each “section” consists of what text should appear on the screen at a designated time. More on designated time further down. 
  5. Press Enter 
  6. Add a time-code for the beginning and end points of the text
    Time must be entered as starting time (when you want the text to appear on the screen) --> ending time (when you want the text removed from the screen) and must be in this format: 
    For example, if you want the first line of your text to appear for the first 10 seconds of the video, your time-code will look like this: 
    00:00:00:00.000 --> 00:00:10.000
  7. Press Enter
  8. Type the text you want to appear on screen during that time-code interval
    We recommended using complete sentences and/or phrases in each section, where possible, to improve the quality of translation. At the same time, consider keeping each section as short as possible so the text does not take up too much of the screen. Strike a balance to make the best experience for the end user.
  9. Press Enter twice (two line breaks)
  10. Repeat for all sections of the given file
  11. File > Save or Save As
  12. Change Save as type: to All Files
  13. Enter the name of the file - but be sure to add .vtt as the file extension, not .txt

The file should look something like this:



00:00:00.000 --> 00:00:02.170 

When you save OneNote notebooks to  


00:00:02.190 --> 00:00:04.640 

the cloud, you instantly gain access to a  


00:00:04.660 --> 00:00:06.220 

bunch of super convenient features  


00:00:06.240 --> 00:00:08.060 

you'd be missing out on if your notebook  


00:00:08.080 --> 00:00:09.760 

was saved to your device.  


00:00:09.780 --> 00:00:11.970 

Not sure where your notebook is saved?  


00:00:11.990 --> 00:00:14.440 

Head to Backstage view 

Uploading your .vtt file to QuickHelp

Now that your .vtt file has been created, you need to upload it into the QuickHelp Admin Portal.

  1. Log in to the QuickHelp Admin Portal (not an admin? Please coordinate with your organization’s QuickHelp Admin)
  2. Click on the Content tab
  3. Navigate to the desired video asset (Topic > Category > Asset)
  4. Click the asset to edit
  5. Click Closed Captions
  6. Click Upload VTT File from the Action Bar at the bottom of the page
  7. Select the language of the VTT file from the SELECT LANGUAGE pulldown menu
  8. Click Choose File and navigate to your .vtt file
  9. Check Is Default to make this file the primary file used for translating captions.
    Note: There must be at least one (1) file that is selected as the default.

  10. Click the Finish check-mark

Different language files are added to the Closed Captions list automatically when an end user chooses closed caption for that specific language. Over time, your library of language files can grow for each video. The Default language file will have an icon that looks like a bulls-eye.

If you want to improve on an automatically-created .vtt file, you can download it, make edits, and re-upload it following the above process.