Beta 1 of the XML Paper Specification Essentials Pack released to Web!

Beta 1 of the XML Paper Specification (XPS) Essentials Pack has been released. The Essentials Pack contains XPS technologies that are based on the Win32 API. This pack is supported on Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, and Windows 2000 SP4.

This beta release of the Essentials Pack contains:

  • Shell extensions for inspecting and changing XPS Document properties in Windows Explorer
  • A stand-alone XPS Document Viewer

Anyone can take advantage of the simple, clean, extensible features of the XPS Document format to build useful and practical technologies. We built the Essentials Pack with an independent parser and renderer on Win32 platforms to provide XPS viewing on Windows 2000 and Windows systems without the WinFX Runtime Components. This is a great validation that independent XPS implementations are possible.

Your feedback is very valuable in shaping the future of these technologies, so please keep it coming, and stay tuned for future updates! You can provide feedback by emailing or by joining the community in the XPS Developers Forum of MSDN. For ongoing updates on XPS technologies, visit us on this blog and at

Install the Essentials Pack at:

Comments (9)

  1. aba_mancom says:

    Does this pack install only on US/English language systems? It does not work on my German XP installation; the setup program shows an error message saying that the language installed on my system is different from the update language.

  2. aba_mancom says:

    Ah. Sorry. Excuse my comment and feel free to delete it. I read the line about the languages in the beta1 limitations just a second after I had hit "Submit".

  3. Tim Sneath says:

    XPS is the fixed format document technology that ships in Windows Presentation Foundation. It’s a specification…

  4. KJK::Hyperion says:

    no worky. The stand-alone viewer just gives me "Cannot add font resource" errors when viewing guidedtour.xps. The shell extension seems to work, altough it’s so subtle and well-integrated I didn’t even notice at first 🙂

    This is on Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1

  5. MichaelG says:

    Is the WPS print driver available yet?  Is it just a Vista thing or will it be available for XP and earlier?  I’d like to convert some Word docs to XPS so that I can reference them as resources from my WPF app.



  6. Pabs says:

    Works fine on XP SP2 English

    Runs much better the the IE embedded viewer

  7. deINO says:

    dosen’t works @ XP SP2 Polish..

    blame all new standards…

  8. DFBew says:

    I upgraded my XP SP2 to Vista and remnants of XPS Beta 1 are still on the PC, preventing me from working with xps docuemnts.  Getting error that the Beta is expired.

  9. Bill Milosz says:

    Can’t download the XPS ESSENTIALS PACK, there IS NO DOWNALOAD for the "ESSENTIALS PACK" – isn’t there some way to open an XPS document on Windows 2000????