View XPS (XML Paper Specification) files on Linux - Adventures in Switching to Linux

Sunday, April 27, 2008

View XPS (XML Paper Specification) files on Linux

A few days ago I was looking at the page for Windows XP SP3 and noticed some documentation at the bottom in a file format I had never heard of before. In addition to a PDF, there was an XPS (XML Paper Specification) available.

XPS is a new competitor to PDF. It was developed by Microsoft and included in Vista and Office 2007 (no wonder I have never heard of it before). They have submitted to the ECMA for standardization but I don't have much hope in them using the ISO Standard stamp as much more than a selling point. Microsoft has not shown they intend to play nice with standards. Remember their HTML extensions and ActiveX? And the latest crap with OOXML? They like to "Embrace, extend and extinguish"

Either way, if you are running Linux and need to view one of these files, I've only found one program so far that does it. The Gnome viewer Evince doesn't yet but the KDE4 viewer Okular does. To install it on Ubuntu just use Synaptic. There is a lot to install since you have to have the KDE base libraries but other than that it is fairly simple.

1 comment:

gonchoblog said...

Hey I tried Okular, but I couldn't print the document. Instead I opened the xps file using the file roller and then opened a directory called resources (don't remember the exact path) and there I found a PNG file.
I haven't tried any other viewer but I think it is better to use the image file.