Viewing XPS Documents

My last post on XPS generated some questions on expected reach and availability of XPS Viewers. Andy Simonds has just posted some more details in this area over in his blog. (His team is both delivering viewers and working with partners on additional ones.)

Comments (5)
  1. Michael Jahn says:

    I just wanted to take a moment to say, hey, relax, XPS works and eveything will be fine !

    I am not super techie, and even I was able to download what was required to view an XPS file in my Web Browser on my Windows XP computer.

    For the faint of heart, I am running Windows XP Pro version 2002 Service Pack 2

    Microsoft Internet Explorer

    – Version 6.0.2900.2180.xpsp_sp2_gdr.050301-1519

    I was able to view the many XPS sample files, print them without issue – even convert them to a PDF file and process these PDF files in our application.

    So, I guess what I am saying is "gee wiz, everyone calm down!"

    It is not like Microsoft did something to make water undrinkable or changed the locks on all our doors for cryin’ out loud.


    PDF is based on PostScript, which was invented over 20 years ago. That technology is now old enough to VOTE.

    We all need to exchange digital documents that behave and display as expected, and Microsoft apparently listened and realized they had to change something besides a print setting or two.

    Adobe PDF is a great thing, but it requires additional software to convert native application documents into PDF, and yet another application to view it.

    Microsoft XPS seems to be what we needed in the first place – a way for me to give my Word or Excel document to someone with out Word or Excel so they can read the thing without it reflowing. And do this right out of the box, plug and play, just save and email.

    It may be what took them so long was Windows OS previous to Vista simply lacked important tools – I am a marketing guy and will not pretend to be able to explain what things like XAML really mean to us an an industry but I will say I love what i see;

    So, perhaps – maybe – we will have a better user experience – perhaps at first, it will be bumpy, but what can I say, my first date with XPS with all that and a bag of chips.

    Michael Jahn

    Product manager


  2. Tom Dayton says:

    Regarding preservation of Word’s hyperlinks within a Word doc and between Word docs:

    1) Currently in Word docs, a link to a bookmark in another Word doc opens the target Word doc and scrolls it to the desired bookmark.  

        But all the Word-to-PDF conversion programs I’ve discovered preserve only the target document name, not the bookmark.  So clicking on the resulting link in the PDF doc opens the target Word doc to its first page, not to the bookmarked line.

        Will Word 2007’s Save to PDF or Save to XPS preserve the scroll-to-bookmarked-line behavior of cross-document links?

    2) Same question, but for within-document links:  Acrobat’s documentation and UI make it seem as though internal links target only to the nearest page, but in fact, clicking on a link scrolls the page so the targeted bookmark’s line is at the top of the page.  (Hmmm…But maybe that works only if tags are created during the PDF conversion.)  Will that behavior exist in Word 2007’s Save to PDF or Save to XPS?

    3) I have two Word docs, containing links to bookmarks in each other.  I need to convert both docs to PDF or XPS, preserving those links.  In other words, I want the same set of interlinked docs to exist, but in PDF or XPS form instead of in Word form.

        That means the ".doc" portions of the links’ target arguments must be changed to ".pdf" or ".xps".  I can make those changes manually in the Word file before conversion, by toggling the hyperlink fields to display and then globally replacing .doc with .pdf or .xps.  But the Word bookmark names that are parts of those link targets don’t exist in the resulting target PDF or XPS file, so the links cannot point to the targeted lines.

        Will Word 2007 provide a way to do this conversion of a set of Word docs?  For example, might it convert each file’s Word bookmarks into PDF "destinations" having the same names as the Word bookmarks’ names, and replace each link’s bookmark name with the same-named PDF "destination" name.


  3. Trang Nguyen says:

    I have a newsletter I created on MS Publisher with pictures and links.  When I try to convert it into a PDF, it won’t allow me to do so.  Can anyone tell me what I need to do?  This is the message it leaves me when i try to convert it:

    The system cannot find the file specified.

    M:InternationalNewsletterNewsletter Final.pdf

  4. Darren says:

    So, with all the hoola about XPS and finding that Vista doesn’t work with Acrobat 5 – I have converted my downloadable docs to XPS. My website visitors without Vista can not read my downloadable docs.

    So, the sixty-four million question – where on this world wide web is this xps reader for the end user – just like a pdf reader… ?

    Where do I download it?


  5. Jeff Bell says:

    Darren –

    Best links to the two XPS Viewers from Microsoft are here:

    It does look like XPS Essentials Pack link is not working right now, but I anticipate this will be fixed soon.

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