Sunday, March 31, 2013

What is an XPS document and how do I create one?

XPS documents are available for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint programs beginning with Microsoft Office 2007 through Office 2013.  It is Microsoft’s version of the Adobe PDF documents.  

If you want to share your document with someone who doesn't have Microsoft Office, you can save the Word, Excel, or PowerPoint file as an XPS document and anyone will be able to view the file, even though they don't have Microsoft Office.

If you don't want the document to be edited by the reader, XPS is now your best option. 


  • Anyone with an XPS Viewer can read an XPS document.  The viewer is free and is automatically installed on all computers running Windows Vista, Windows 7, or Windows 8.  It is a free download from Microsoft for anyone running Windows XP.  Adobe Reader is not automatically installed but it is a free download from Adobe.
  • The XPS document cannot be changed.  PDF’s can now be edited in MS Word 2013.
  • When you print an XPS document, it looks exactly like the original Word or Excel file.  PDF’s are slightly smaller.

How to create an XPS document

  1. Create a document in Microsoft Word, Excel, or PowerPoint (2007 or newer).  Note: If you have multiple Excel worksheets that you want to save as XPS, before continuing below, first select all the worksheets. (Select the first worksheet tab and then hold down the SHIFT key and select the last worksheet tab.)
  2. Press Ctrl+S to save the file or save it as a normal document first and then use "Save As" for the XPS document.
  3.  Choose a location to save the file.
  4. Enter a file name.
  5. In the Save as type: click the down arrow and select XPS Document (*.xps)

How to view and XPS document

  • Open the document like you would open any other document.  As long as the XPS viewer is installed, the document will open for you to view, but not edit.