How to Convert Quark to InDesign

In this quick walkthrough, we've shared how to convert Quark to InDesign format, so that you can work between the two design programs. 

InDesign has the ability to convert QuarkXPress (3.3 and 4.1x) documents and templates, whether they are single- or multi-language files. If you're using a new version of QuarkXPress, just save your project in an older Quark format before performing these steps. 

Opening a QuarkXPress Document in InDesign
1. First, close the original QuarkXPress document, so that it isn't running when you open InDesign. Find the document folder on your hard drive, and copy any linked files (i.e. images, objects) to the same folder. 

2. Now, open InDesign and select "File" > "Open", so that you can locate the QuarkXPress file. If you're using a Windows PC, you'll need to click on the "Files Of Type" menu and select the QuarkXPress Passport (4.1x) or QuarkXPress (3.3-4.1x) formats.

3. In some cases, a warning box will appear, and InDesign will not be able to perform the conversion. If you click "Save", you can save a copy of the warning information as a text file for future reference.

4. Text wrap is handled differently in InDesign. If you need the converted QuarkXPress document to have a more accurate text wrap, choose "Preferences" and look for the Composition section. Then, choose "Text Wrap Only Affects Objects Beneath". 

5. Finally, click the "Open" button to convert Quark to InDesign.

Saving a QuarkXPress Template in InDesign
Open the QuarkXPress template with the InDesign software. Then, select "File" > "Save As" from the main menu.

Choose a location for your converted InDesign template. Click on the "Save As Type" menu ("Format" on Mac) and select "InDesign Template". Hit the Save button, and your template will be converted. 

How Does the Conversion Work?
Here's what happens when a QuarkXPress file is converted to InDesign:

  • Graphics and text are kept intact, and they're listed in the Links panel.
  • QuarkXPress text boxes are changed to InDesign text frames.
  • QuarkXPress color profiles are disregarded in InDesign.
  • QuarkXPress multi-ink colors are mapped to InDesign's mixed inks. If the multi-ink color contains at least one spot color, it will be converted to a process color in InDesign.
  • Grouped items stay grouped in InDesign, except if there are non-printing items in the group.  
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