Microsoft Publisher is often peoples’ go-to program when they want to create brochures and other printed presentations. If you find creating printed material with Publisher a little too complex, there are alternatives available that might make your creation process a little easier. Here are four great alternatives to Microsoft Publisher if you're looking to make a switch. PagePlus Starter Edition is a free tool that lets you create dynamic marketing materials like stationary, posters, brochures, flyers, newsletters and business cards, to name a few. If you’re looking for an open source alternative to Microsoft Publisher, Scribus is one good option. Formerly known as OpenOffice.org, Apache OpenOffice is another open source alternative to Publisher. If you want every option known to man and one of the most professional publishing tools available, Adobe InDesign is unquestionably the program to go with. Pageplus is not that intuitive, especially if you have been using one of the older programs such as Pagemaker which is far superior even now. I am now reformatting them from InDesign to Publisher, so its easier for my translators in different countries to buy and use, and there are many things Publisher is better at! I had one manual with about 80 photos, and had boxes around the photos that keep moving, depending on the screen size you are looking at. If the photo is too dark I can edit in publisher, in fact I can change ALL the photos on a page, even making them grayscale all at once, and making them brighter all at once. In the very early days of Publisher there was a problem with the quality of photos placed in Publisher - not any more, I have used Publisher 2007 and 2013 (2007 is easier).
Also looking for an alternative and found that the open source LibraOffice v4 can open and edit Publisher files.
It doesn't have the same flexibility as publisher in creating the files, but at least it lets you get at previously made files if you don't have publisher anymore.
I did not like the Scribus interface, but it looks as though it's the only option for a little non-profit. Unfortunately, many users feel as though its usability could be greatly improved, particularly for beginner designers.
With a handy pop-up that lets you pick and choose what you want to create, PagePlus is pretty intuitive for beginners. After registering, you will be sent a product registration key via email, but remember, not all of the pay-for features will be available to you.


Scribus is a free desktop publishing tool that works cross-platform, which makes it convenient for people who like to hop between multiple computers and operating systems.
It comes with extensive tutorials and documentation, as well as great integration with other Adobe products. Too many options are blocked to be entitled 'free software.' Personally I despise any download that sprouts the word 'free' when it is nothing but a con to pay up! Adobe bought Pagemaker from Aldus and then screwed it up to try to make it work like Quarkexpress and called it Indesign, a complicated mess. One big issue for long-time MS Pub users: none of the listed alternatives are able to open saved MS Pub documents. It is highly flexible and easy to manipulate without going to classes and without spending hundreds of dollars. One or two things have changed a little over the years but it has always stayed pretty easy to put together all sorts of different types of documents. I open a PDF of the book in whatever best reader (Adobe, MS's weird Nitro) and cut and paste text into Word. I can no longer scroll away from selected objects or text; if I move it outside the window, the window re-centers on it.
With it's latest updates it altered Publisher's behavior so that it's no longer possible to move selected objects or text outside of the window. I hated Scribus's interface, but it looks like the only alternative for a small non-profit. This includes to personalise ads, to provide social media features and to analyse our traffic. The template is set up with margins and guidelines sized for printing 2 candy bar templates side-by-side. Open this template in Publisher and use it as a starting point for creating your own candy bar wrappers. If you don't want to start from scratch, or if you need some ideas to get your creativity flowing, the program comes with a good variety of ready-made templates. Scribus offers a lot of great features, such as the ability to export and import PDF documents, as well as drag and drop designs. You can create content as text documents, using the presentation app, or with the drawing program.
If you’re familiar with other Adobe apps, InDesign has a similar interface and should be relatively easy to navigate.


You have to make sure you don't have security on the file and, of course, it only works for amending or copying from an existing doc, not creating.
Extremely frustrating, and neither a reinstall of Office nor a system restore, have helped.
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Even better, PagePlus supports a drag and drop design method, making it a breeze to move around different content quickly during the creation process.
Formatting can be a little tricky in some instances though, and some scripting knowledge is required to access a few of the features. For people who like variety, OpenOffice is a really great way to explore how more than one app within an office suite can create customizable content exactly to your specifications.
If this is your first time using an Adobe product though, InDesign might present a rather steep learning curve. Now forced to get rid of my beloved XP is was soooo disappointed to see Office didn't contain Pub and have to buy it separately.
Not only is the lack of freedom to view the page enough to make you crazy, it breaks some functionality (the style paintbrush, for instance).
Since it’s a part of Adobe's Creative Cloud suite, however, this professional app comes with a monthly subscription fee.
All versions - Mac, Linux, Windows, etc can now open MS Pub documents with reasonable accuracy. I had it all backed up of course but bought a new Mac computer knowing publisher would not translate but hoping I could find a reasonable alternative and perhaps just recreate some of my work on it.
I was told Pages would work for me, but it doesn't even begin to compare to the flexibility and ease I got from publisher. In Design is way too complicated and expensive it's like buying a Ferrari to drive to the grocery store. My only solution is to now run between two computers - a PC that runs publisher and my beautiful new Mac that runs everything else.



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