You can export a document or book as a reflowable eBook in EPUB format that is compatible with the Adobe Digital Editions reader software, and other eBook reader software.
InDesign creates a single .epub file containing the XHTML-based content. If specified, the exported file may include a cover image. The cover image is created from an image, or created by rasterizing the first page in the specified document (or the style source document if a book was selected). The thumbnail is used to depict the book in the EPUB readers or the Digital Editions Reader library view. To view the file, you need an EPUB reader. You can also use the Adobe Digital Editions software, which you can download free from the Adobe website.
The .epub file is essentially a .zip file. To view and edit the contents of an .EPUB file, change the extension from .epub to .zip, and then extract the contents. This is especially useful for editing the CSS file.
InDesign objects such as text frames and objects that contain placed images, are always exported when you choose the Based on Page Layout ordering option. Empty objects are not exported unless you have applied a setting to the InDesign object via the Object Export Options to make it export as a JPEG, GIF, or PNG.
For more information on the EPUB format, see www.idpf.org.
Download a free copy of the Digital Editions reader at www.adobe.com/products/digitaleditions.
See the blog Digital Editions for information on Digital Editions.
For information on exporting to Kindle, see the InDesign to Kindle white paper.
Learn how to convert your InDesign files to the EPUB format and start selling your eBooks for viewing on the Apple iPad. See the InDesign to iPad white paper.
EPUB General export options
Include Document Metadata
The metadata from the document (or the style source document if a book was selected) is included with the exported file.
Add Publisher Entry
Specify the publisher information that appears in the eBook metadata. You can specify a URL for the publisher so that someone who receives the eBook can visit the publisher’s website.
Every EPUB document requires a unique identifier. You can specify the unique identifier attribute. If you leave this field empty, a unique identifier is automatically created.
lets you specify the order in which the page elements are exported.
Base On Page Layout
The location of the items on the page determines the reading order.
If Base On Page Layout is selected, InDesign determines the reading order of page objects by scanning left to right and top to bottom. In some instances, especially in complex, multicolumn documents, the design elements may not appear in the desired reading order. Use Dreamweaver to rearrange and format the contents.
(Asian versions only) If Base On Page Layout is selected, InDesign determines the reading order of page objects according to the document’s binding (left to right or right to left). In some instances, especially in complex, multicolumn documents, the exported design elements may not appear in the desired reading order. Use Dreamweaver to rearrange and format the contents.
Same As XML Structure
The order of the tags in Structure View determines the reading order. See Tag page items.
Same As Articles Panel
The order of elements in the Articles panel determines the reading order. Only the checked articles are exported. See Include articles for export.
Specify a simple margin in Ems or pixels. Specifying margins in Ems is better for multiscreen compatibility. The same value is applied to all margins: top, bottom, left, and right.
Select Map To Unordered List to convert bullet paragraphs into List Items, which are formatted in HTML using the <ul> tag. Select Convert To Text to format using the <p> tag with bullet characters as text. If you have used native InDesign auto-bullets, subbullets are also included.
Determines how numbers are converted in the HTML file. If you have used native InDesign auto-numbering, subbullets are also included
EPUB Images options
The Images section of the Digital Editions Export Options dialog box includes the following options. From the Image Conversion menu, determine how images are exported to HTML.
Specify the resolution of the images in pixels per inch (ppi). While operating systems have standardized on either 72 ppi or 96 ppi, mobile devices range from 132 ppi (iPad), to 172 ppi (Sony Reader), to over 300 ppi (iPhone 4). You can specify a ppi value for each object selected. Values include 72, 96, 150 (average for all eBook devices today), and 300.
Specify if image size must remain fixed or resized relative to the page. Relative to Page Size sets a relative percentage value based on the size of the image relative to the InDesign page width. This option causes the images to rescale proportionally, relative to the width of the reading area.
Image Alignment and Spacing
Specify the image alignment, left, center, right, and the top and bottom padding.
Insert Page Break
Check to insert page breaks with images. Page breaks can be inserted Before Image, After Image, or Before and After Image.
Lets you choose whether the optimized images in your document are converted to GIF, JPEG, or PNG. Choose Automatic to let InDesign decide which format to use in each instance. Choosing PNG disables the image compression settings.; use PNG for lossless images or for images that include transparency.
GIF Options (Palette)
Lets you control how InDesign handles colors when optimizing GIF files. The GIF format uses a limited color palette, which cannot exceed 256 colors.
Choose Adaptive to create a palette using a representative sample of colors in the graphic without any dithering (mixing of small spots of colors to simulate additional colors). Choose Web to create a palette of web-safe colors that are a subset of Windows and Mac OS system colors. Choose System (Win) or System (Mac) to create a palette using the built‑in system color palette. This choice may cause unexpected results.
Select Interlace to load the images progressively by filling in missing lines. If this option is not selected, an image looks fuzzy and gradually becomes clear as the image reaches full resolution.
JPEG Options (Image Quality)
Determines the trade-off between compression (for smaller file sizes) and image quality for each JPEG image created. Low produces the smallest file and lowest image quality.
JPEG Options (Format Method)
Determines how quickly JPEG graphics display when the file containing the image is opened on the web. Choose Progressive to make the JPEG images display gradually and in increasing detail as they are downloaded. (Files created with this option are slightly larger and require more RAM for viewing.) Choose Baseline to make each JPEG file displays only after it has been downloaded; a placeholder appears in its place until the file displays.
Ignore Object Conversion Settings
Ignores Object Export Options applied on individual images. See Apply Object export options.
EPUB Contents options
Format For EPUB Content
Specify whether you want to use the XHTML or DTBook format. DTBook is a specialized format that is intended for sight impaired end readers.
Use InDesign TOC Style
Select this option if you want to generate a table of contents based on the selected TOC style. From the TOC Style menu, specify the TOC style you want to use to build the table of contents in the eBook. You can choose Layout > Table Of Contents Styles to create a special TOC style for your eBook.
Break Document at Paragraph Style
You can split the eBook at the specified paragraph style. Splitting results in a larger number of HTML files in the EPUB package, but can be helpful for breaking up long files and increases performance in the EPUB readers.
Place Footnote After Paragraph
Check to place footnotes after the paragraph. If deselected, footnotes are converted to endnotes.
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) are a collection of formatting rules that control the appearance of content in a web page. When you use CSS to format a page, you separate content from presentation.