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How can I open Indesign (indd and idml) Files in Publisher?

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21 hours ago, Patrick Connor said:

You have effectively saved files in a proprietry (undocumented) file format [INDD] that no external company can interpret reliably or correctly in a reasonable time. This is the case for almost all propritary digital file formats.

You do realize of course that we are doing the same thing whenever we save an Affinity Publisher document?

If you hope to help alleviate this problem, Publisher will need something like IDML export in addition to import...  something to chew on.

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46 minutes ago, fde101 said:

You do realize of course that we are doing the same thing whenever we save an Affinity Publisher document?

If you hope to help alleviate this problem, Publisher will need something like IDML export in addition to import...  something to chew on.

Yes, I gave that sentence my full attention when I wrote it and understood what I meant and it's consequences to this thread. People should think about this stuff and the software rental model has made them do so more than before it was a common occurence.


Patrick Connor
Serif (Europe) Ltd.

Latest releases on each platform 

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On 7/1/2019 at 11:27 AM, mscwebmaster said:

I'm trapped into using InDesign. 

Yeah, that was the point wasn't it. Adobe already had the graphics industry in an iron grip but decided that wasn't enough. Any thoughts of switching software is dashed by the fact that giving up the sub means no access to your older files. There's no way to open InDesign for those occasions you might need to while creating new sets of documents somewhere else. Workflows and expectations revolve around Adobe. At this point they OWN your ability to make a living in your field. That's a terrible feeling and untenable from a business standpoint.

I only own Designer at the moment but plan to add the other apps at some point. I'm fortunate to have a copy of CS6 which has given me some breathing room. I've noticed a number of "missing" features and some UI flaws in the various Affinity apps but have no choice but work around them until Serif can add or fix those issues. Our options are few and Affinity is like a lifeboat that can't fit everyone all at once. Hopefully they can come back to pick you up later.

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I have InDesign and PagePlus… use them both often...   I do a lot of database driven indesign document generation via IDML.   Its an open and fairly easy to navigate format for development.     I much prefer PagePlus for my own projects though...  its print ready PDF support as always fit my needs quite well and its done the job for years.  I likely have 100s for documents in Page Plus and know the app well.   

After having brought in several PDF documents for editing in Publisher I wouldn't say its PDF import is any better than Page Plus...  and I wouldn't want to depend on it for bringing in my current InDesign or PagePlus documents.   As a software developer I understand the clean break in format in moving to Publisher as its age was likely limiting things quite a bit...   

That said...   Publishers primary markets are InDesign users and Page Plus users...   If they want to get InDesign folks to move Publisher they need to support IDML at a minimum... and if they want page plus users to migrate they need a good page plus import.    No one is better equipped to make a pageplus import than serif... they own both formats.   IDML is open and fairly straightforward to work with as well.    No reason IMO serif shouldn't be addressing both of these.    I think they are putting to much faith/credit in their PDF import. 

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On 3. Juli 2019 at 12:05 PM, subetha said:

Any news regarding the timeline for this important feature?

On 2. Juli 2019 at 4:06 PM, fde101 said:

something like IDML export in addition to import...

 … which other software already provides and which was not implemented in Affinity Publisher during the last five years.

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On 1. Juli 2019 at 6:05 PM, Patrick Connor said:

[INDD] that no external company can interpret reliably or correctly in a reasonable time.

The problem is that Serif (Chris_K) answered the first question here “Is it possible to open indd files?” with “It's not possible yet, plans to be able to in the future” and “It's being worked and will be in an update […] But I would be talking more than a few weeks in not months”. Probably that was marketing because it was not rectified immediately.

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In my opinion Chris_K probably misspoke. Not all QA engineers are experts on file formats and the subtleties of the distinction between INDD or IDML files. The post title is INDD or IDML he may have thought his answer was correct. Perhaps ask him rather than tagging me.... oh you cannot he has left the company, so perhaps are left with believing the head of development and the head of QA. This was not marketing spin it was an oversight. I have clarified that post.

If anyone bought Publisher in the last 6 weeks because a QA engineer said 9 months ago it would be "possible to open indd files" then email me pconnor@serif.com and I will personally cancel your product key and refund you from my own pocket. There are no plans to open INDD files, only IDML


Patrick Connor
Serif (Europe) Ltd.

Latest releases on each platform 

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30 minutes ago, Patrick Connor said:

In my opinion Chris_K probably misspoke. Not all QA engineers are experts on file formats and the subtleties of the distinction between INDD or IDML files. The post title is INDD or IDML he may have thought his answer was correct. Perhaps ask him rather than tagging me.... oh you cannot he has left the company, so perhaps are left with believing the head of development and the head of QA. This was not marketing spin it was an oversight. I have clarified that post.

If anyone bought Publisher in the last 6 weeks because a QA engineer said 9 months ago it would be "possible to open indd files" then email me pconnor@serif.com and I will personally cancel your product key and refund you from my own pocket. There are no plans to open INDD files, only IDML

If indd or idml: This is almost the same.

But this is wonderful news for the publisher and the company and the users!

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5 hours ago, Moon12 said:

If indd or idml: This is almost the same.

But this is wonderful news for the publisher and the company and the users!

Indd and idml are not 'almost the same." While I admit I've confused the two in the past, the fact is that indd and idml are significantly different formats. It is, for all practical purposes, impossible for a third-party app to open indd files, which are in a proprietary Adobe format. IDML, on the other hand, is a conversion format that InDesign can produce so that third party apps can open InDesign documents. It is this latter capability that we have been talking about and waiting for. Unfortunately, the release version of Publisher does not yet have this capability. Needless to say, I am disappointed. And Serif has not yet informed us when it will be added. So, though I bought the release version of Publisher at the pre-release price, I will have to continue to use InDesign CS 6. Fortunately I am still running macOS 10.12, Sierra, so that won't be a problem. Sooner or later, though....

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On 6/26/2019 at 5:15 PM, dannymontani said:

Sorry to say this program is going to be dead without the ability to open InDesign files. The only way it will survive is brand new users out in the universe. Money not spent well. I'm sure we will pay for the option....way out in the future. Damn it.

You should read a little more. This thread has dedicated over 20 pages to the discussion. Opening indd files is impractical, if not impossible. The file type facility we are waiting for is idml, which is an output format from InDesign that enables files to be opened by third-party apps, like Publisher. We are told that that capability is coming, but not release date has been offered.

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I was also very disappointed when I bought Publisher and discovered that I couldn’t import IDML files.

It was a bit like you found a brilliant car, with super gadgets for an unbeatable price and then once you’ve got it, you find that it doesn’t use petrol or battery power so you just have to wait until the company is ready to provide a fuel interface.

Totally Not Impressed.

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For the few here that have not read all the posts.  If you own a CS version and have never saved any files in a CC version the idml conversion that is coming for APublisher will be excellent. For those that have CC files, you will have to 'rent' CC until you die, OR transfer all your files to idml from indd before shutting down your CC rental.  I am one of the lucky ones, yet lately I have realized that this old dog doesn't do well learning new habits (APub) and may one day go CC. It truly is great software. BUT... as we all feel.... hate the rental at $28 canadian at this point. 

Also I received an email from Adobe yesterday stating 50% off. My first thought was wow, maybe they have made note of Affinity? (even though after a year the price always goes back to hell) But after clicking on the deal.. it's NO DEAL.  well.. $1 off U.S. price per month on InDesign when you buy Photoshop for the 9.99.  Where is the 50% off? I believe it read, 50% off Photoshop when purchasing another single app.  That would have meant 20.99 for one app and $4.98 for Photoshop.  Anyway.... I wasn't too interested and maybe I've missed something. 

When Adobe sent out a survey many years ago just before CC. I checked off the YES to rental... but only at a reasonable price.  The 9.99 a month is doable for me. But that is only Photoshop so far. why? not sure. I know it is by far their most used software so like everything in life, demand.  Yet... supply isn't part of this. No packaging, no CD, DVD, no manuals, no shipping, no retail store to pay.  The perfect good ol' software billionaire business plan. (that I wish I was part of) 

As time goes on APublisher will just get better and better. I hope. Because some things these days just get worse.  Like turning on the TV and flicking. gone. Although I just bought Alexa and returned it because she's too dumb. Got a google, not bad. Hey Google - Breaking Bad.  It turns ON the tv and goes to netflix and starts where i left off.  MAGIC

HEY GOOGLE - OPEN PUBLISHER, OPEN IDMLS,  LAYOUT NEW ADS, PRINT, FOLD AND DELIVER MY PUBLICATION!!  

 

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Can I suggest that even if there isn’t a fully functioning IDML import developed, that Serif release a beta version which would allow at least some IDML files to be imported or partially imported.

I’ve just discovered now that this functionality has been discussed since 2018 so surely some progress has been made on the development and could be released as a beta.

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34 minutes ago, BLKay said:

The 9.99 a month is doable for me. But that is only Photoshop so far. why? not sure. I know it is by far their most used software so like everything in life, demand.  Yet... supply isn't part of this. No packaging, no CD, DVD, no manuals, no shipping, no retail store to pay.

Actually, for $9.99 you can get Lightroom Classic and Lightroom (for mobile) plus Photoshop with the Photography package. Maybe you don't use Lightroom, but many of us do and find this to be a bargain. Adding InDesign for another $5.00 would be a good deal in my book.

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1 hour ago, fdaly said:

I’ve just discovered now that this functionality has been discussed since 2018 so surely some progress has been made on the development and could be released as a beta.

Maybe, maybe not. They have mostly been focused during that time in getting the first release of Publisher out, and may not have had time to do enough work on IDML import to be worthwhile. Additionally, there's the question of whether Publisher has enough functionality to make IDML import worthwhile. That was one answer to a question awhile back about why Publisher can't import PagePlus (a Serif predecessor of Publisher) files. There woud be too much lost, at least right now.

So it's a two-fold issue: do they have an importer, and can they handle the data if they could import it.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.239), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.476 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.476 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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1 hour ago, BLKay said:

 If you own a CS version and have never saved any files in a CC version the idml conversion that is coming for APublisher will be excellent.

That confuses me a bit. There is no "IDML conversion" coming for Publisher. Publisher will be able to import IDML when the import code is finished. But it is up to you to provide the IDML, presumably by exporting from your Adobe product. But why would it matter if the IDML was created by CS or CC?


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.239), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.476 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.476 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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Walt, because if you still own a CS product you just keep on exporting your CS files to idml as you go. No rush (and) no need to join CC every time you need one of your CC files exported to idml.  OR, export all of your CC files in one very long day/week/month of opening CC and exporting.  Until or unless there is software that can batch them. Which is another way to go for Serif. Perhaps a plug in or script for CC and voila. 

So I'm not saying there is any difference in a CC or CS export to idml.  It's just that you need to 'rent' again to get to your files.  Unless the day comes where you have upgraded your OS to a point where your CS doesn't work. Then again you will be stuck with batching or sitting there for a month exporting CS's to idml. 

to some all of this is not worth it. Just pay your 20 u.s per month and use CC forever.  Who knows what the future brings. I've always asked Adobe to make "InDesign Elements" for us that simply want to PRINT things.  Yeah I know they aren't listening to one guy.  It would at least be nice if InDesign was $5 or even $10 mth. Would they not have more than twice the users and thus make more money? I guess they know better than I do. 

I have done the math.  I bought CS4 standard for $1500 canadian.  Which is about 2 years of $60 per month.  If upgrades were $600 for another 2 years thats 10 months. So it is more to rent than it is to buy. Especially if you still use CS4 which is still great. The only thing missing is custom Font menus which drives me nuts. Although - as with so many things these days - I did have "You Control Fonts" back on my old pre? leopard days...  Apple spoiled that one with system protection.  OS9 had Now Utilities. WOW that was nice. Colour your fonts.. sort them into categories. Some things sure go backwards I tell ya.  

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1 hour ago, BLKay said:

Which is another way to go for Serif. Perhaps a plug in or script for CC and voila. 

Wouldn't work. It would still require that they understand the internal format of the InDesign files, which are proprietary and undocumented. That's why the Publisher support will be limited to IDML.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.239), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.476 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.476 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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I know. I'm talking about idml files not indd. Did I mess up? Let me know if I need and edit. :) Thanks Walt. 

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3 minutes ago, BLKay said:

I know. I'm talking about idml files not indd. Did I mess up? Let me know if I need and edit. :) Thanks Walt. 

Maybe; it's not totally clear :)

Publisher wouldn't need a CC script or plugin for IDML, would it? You would just Place (or possibly Open) the files.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 1903 (18362.239), 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00Gz, GeForce GTX 970
Affinity Photo 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.476 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.476 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.7.2.471 and 1.7.3.475 Beta

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10 hours ago, Patrick Connor said:

The post title is INDD or IDML

No. It is “[…] indd and idml […]”. 

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On 30. August 2018 at 3:20 PM, Chris_K said:

I can't give any timelines for this. It's being worked and will be in an update

People might mean that this refers to INDD, but it's all about IDML.

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