How to install and use Scripts in Indesign

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Have you ever thought of scripts to speed up your projects in Indesign or to complete any specific task… like one mentioned in one of my earlier post Ways of splitting linked text frame in Indesign using scripts but don’t know what a script type is and how to use it. Then today in this post we will discuss about scripts.

First let me tell you what a script is. A Script is a plain text edited in Notepad or in any specific package with a special file name extension for example *.jsx, *.scpt, *.vbs etc.

  • *.jsx stands for Javascript files which can be run either on Mac or Windows.
  • *.as is an Applescript extension made to run only on Mac
  • *.vbs is a script created using Visual Basic and are Windows-only

However all these extension types can be edited in notepad, and in case if you know some coding and want to modify or change settings you can do it in notepad. But while doing so make sure to save the file as a plain text file with the original extension.

Now download the script you want to add to Indesign and follow the steps given below to install it in Indesign.

Oppsss.. actually here is no steps but you only need to open the script panel in InDesign (Window > Automation > Scripts in CS3 and CS4; or Window > Utilities > Scripts in CS5 or later), then right-click on either Application or User. We tend to use “User” for scripts that we’ve downloaded, but it’s up to you and the permissions you have on your computer. From the context menu, choose Reveal in Finder (or Reveal in Explorer).


Inside the folder that opens there is a folder called Scripts panel. Just place the script in this folder and as soon as you paste the script there it will show up immediately in InDesign. No need to restart the program.

Now, to run the script, open the document in InDesign into which you want to run the script, then open the Scripts palette (see above) and double-click the script name. Some scripts require you make a selection first before you run them, because they act on the selection. See if the script writer provided any sort of documentation if you can’t figure it out.

That’s it… hope now you know the way how to handle a scripts in Indesign however in this site too I have added many articles that uses scripts to enhance productivity…

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