.IDML File Extension

.IDML File Extension

File Type

Adobe InDesign Markup Language File

Developer Adobe Systems
3.6  |  38 Votes
Category Page Layout Files
Format Zip

What is an IDML file?

An IDML file is a document created by InDesign, a program used to create professional page layouts. It contains several XML files, which represent a complete InDesign document. IDML files are stored as a compressed package using Zip compression.

More Information
Screenshot of a .idml file in Adobe InDesign 2021
IDML file open in Adobe InDesign 2021

IDML packages contain a hierarchy of XML files and directories. The root directory of the archive contains a designmap.xml file, which specifies high-level document properties, as well as the document layout. The archive also contains the following folders, which are used to store parts of the document:

  • Resources: Contains document elements, such as colors, fonts, and paragraph styles; includes Graphics.xml, Fonts.xml, Styles.xml, and Preferences.xml.
  • Spreads: Stores document spreads.
  • Stories: Contains all document stories.
  • XML: Stores document elements and settings; includes BackingStory.xml, Tags.xml, and Mapping.xml.
  • MasterSpreads: Contains MaterSpreads.xml, which specifies all master spreads displayed on document pages, such as rectangles, ellipses, groups, polygons, buttons, and text frames.
  • META-INF: Stores the standard container.xml file for UCF packages.

IDML files are designed to replace .INX files, which are more difficult to create and edit. IDML files provide an interchangeable format for Adobe InDesign documents, as well as a way for third-party tools to modify and assemble InDesign documents. To create an IDML file with InDesign select File → Save As... and choose "InDesign CS4 or later (IDML)" from the "Format" dropdown list.

NOTE: The InDesign Markup Language was introduced with InDesign CS4. InDesign still supports backward compatibility with INX files.

How do I open an IDML file?

You can open IDML files with Adobe InDesign in Windows and macOS. To open an IDML file with InDesign, select File → Open..., choose the IDML file, and click Open. You can also double-click the IDML file to open it if it is associated with InDesign.

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Programs that open or reference IDML files

Updated September 17, 2021

Verified by FileInfo.com

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