Here’s the new and updated edition of a very handy resource from James Wamser – a complete reference to all versions of Adobe InDesign ever released… Similar to his Photoshop and Illustrator handbooks, it’s called called the Adobe InDesign New Features Guide, 1.0 to CC (2023), and this 138-page ebook is available for free download now:
This PDF guidebook comprehensively reviews and compares what’s new in each successive revision of InDesign from version 1.0 in 1999 all the way up to the current CC 2023 release – and covers the details of all the major new features and material improvements along the way.
It’s an impressive compilation of what many people want to know when they ask what’s different between versions… Typically you’ll find articles (like this one or this one) that give the primary differences between two single releases, but never before has there been coverage as exhaustive as Mr. Wamser has carefully compiled with this work – and you can get it instantly here:
Just look for the “Download PDF” icon at the lower right of your browser, once you pull up the book.
It’s also very helpful to consult when you need to save back to previous versions of InDesign (where the featuresets and file formats are older) – this way you’ll know which capabilities prior releases can support, and which they cannot.
Special: Legally download dozens of free Adobe books for a limited time!
If you don’t already have InDesign installed on your computer yet, then you can just download a free trial to get started right away – and then run it for at least 7 days free.
Here’s the story on how this guidebook was put together:
About: Created by James Wamser, an Adobe Certified Instructor, to use as a reference while teaching. Feel free to share your comments, any errors, or how you use it:
Thought I would share: Got my first hands-on look at InDesign (K2) in October 1998 to provide feedback on features and output test files.
Community Help: Thanks to Steve Werner and everyone else for their feedback.
New Features: Taken primarily from Adobe.com, Adobe’s New Features documents and Adobe Press Releases.
Brief History: Adobe first previewed InDesign in September 1998 during Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ keynote at Seybold in San Francisco. On March 2, 1999, Adobe President Chuck Geschke and CEO John Warnock previewed Adobe InDesign duing Seybold Seminars in Boston.
- Adobe InDesign 1.0 shipped on August 31, 1999.
- Creative Cloud (CC) was announced on May 6, 2013 at Adobe MAX in Los Angeles, and first shipped on June 17, 2013.
- The most recent major version – InDesign CC 2023 – was released on October 18, 2022.
Install now: Get all new Creative Cloud 2023 direct download links and free trials.
What’s New in InDesign 2023? [Video]
- The 10 most common myths about Creative Cloud
- How to save 60% with the Student & Teacher Editions
- Free! Watch 200+ new courses from Adobe MAX
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Do you have any questions about InDesign? Just ask them below and we’ll get you answers fast!
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35 thoughts on “Free Download: Adobe InDesign New Features Guidebook (138 Pages)”
An invaluable almanac for InDesign, thank you.
Outstanding, thanks for sharing
This is really great, would love to get it for all the other apps too like Photoshop, Illustrator etc !
Thanks for the great article! Glad to share.
Thank you James! This is a terrific compendium that you’ve put together here.
As Gloria mentioned above, it’s a valuable resource that customers could definitely use for all major Adobe tools… InDesign is a perfect start, and it’s flying off the shelves.
The InDesign New Features Guide was updated on December 8, 2014.
What’s New: Updated the Index, added features, added a link to Page 1 that enables direct download from my Public Dropbox folder so you always have access to the latest version.
Same link as before for the new edition.
Awesome! Now folks can easily make sure the guidebook is up to date, because of course Adobe will continue coming out with new versions and more upgrades going forward…
Thanks also for the mention in Favorite Sites at the end!
I need Indesign CS4…
How long is the free trial?
How much is the software after the trial is over?
Do I need to sign a contract?
What else do I need to be concerned about with the software trial?
For all Adobe free trials, you don’t need to sign a contract or even provide a credit card…
We do still have the CS4 trials available to download; however for long-term use, nobody sells CS4 legitimately any more – it’s old software (from 2008) and not recommended to try to buy it, as anything you could find is very likely to be bogus.
Instead, we would advise going with a newer release such as CS6 from 2012 or (the latest/greatest version) CC 2014 – both of which Adobe sells direct.
For either of those releases, you can download and run a trial for up to 60 days free on your computer by following the guide here:
How to Extend Adobe Free Trials to 60 Days Long, Instead of 30 Days
Hope that helps!
Updated on February 12, 2015:
InDesign New Features Guide includes the Feb. 2015 updates, along with an updated Index.
Fantastic James, thank you! It’s up to 101 pages now as well.
Does something similar exist for Illustrator or Photoshop?
Hello Salil, not that we know of – but we wish!
thank you very much
Why oh why when I save an indd file for the first time, does the program not remember where the file came from?
Not only do I have to scale back through drives and folders to locate said file to overwrite, but often the choice is also not available in the list of recent folders. The second and subsequent times to save then works as it should, without a user intervention.
Hi Ed, which version of InDesign are you talking about, and what platform are you running on? We tried to reproduce what you described in InDesign CC 2015 on Windows, but could not. Everything worked as it should, including the Open, Open Recent, Save, and Save As menu items.
I am using CC 2015 on a Mac, Yosemite 10.10.5, but previous versions of ID did the same thing.
Ed, can you describe step-by-step the actions you take to reproduce the issue? Are you fully updated and running InDesign CC version 2015.1? Have you filed an Adobe bug report?
Is the Photoshop book available in Dutch? or is it English.
I have Photoshop and Lightroom 2015 CC
Hey there Hans, most of our free Adobe books are in English, including the ones for Photoshop.
A few are available in other languages, like the one there for Acrobat.
Most if not all of the Adobe product manuals are also available in multiple different languages, including Dutch.
All your links to this book (the one in the main article and the one in the comments) point to the Adobe Forums. You may not be aware that there is a serious bug with the Adobe Forums (colloquially known as The Redirect Loop of Death) which prevents many users from accessing them at all.
See this page.
As you can see from this thread, this problem has been going on for over 4 years. I still have this problem, and cannot access this book from any of your links. Presumably the Adobe Forum posts you reference have links to the book. Perhaps you could divulge the link without passing through the inaccessible-to-me Adobe Forums.
(And yes, not being able to access the Adobe Forums AT ALL is a major problem for me as a Creative Cloud user.)
Sorry you’re having trouble Deborah. We have not heard of that before – and from the link you posted, it appears to be quite rare (only 8 people reported having the same issue in 4 years).
It seems to be something funny with your account, most likely an unusual data conflict of some sort. The reason is because changing browsers or computers (or clearing your cache/cookies) doesn’t help you.
Did you try changing your Adobe ID names(s) on Profile tab of your Adobe account, as recommended? Several people there said that worked, and fixed the redirects they had.
If not, you could just create a brand new Adobe ID and then contact Customer Service about transferring your licenses over. To create a new ID while keeping your same original email address, follow the 2-step process here. That should hopefully solve it for you.
PS: But just to clarify – you don’t even need an Adobe ID to read the Forums! They are public and open for everyone to view. with no account necessary. The only time a log in is required is if you want to post.
You can test this yourself by opening any web browser, clearing your cache & cookies (to reset), and visiting any page there yourself. There is no access restriction.
So here it is: The InDesign New Features Guide
I’m sorry to hassle with this question but, where is the link to download the latest updated-to-InDesign CC 2017 PDF?
Hey Alex, normally you would find it on this page:
Complete Reference Guides and eBook Manuals for All Adobe Tools
But Adobe says the new CC 2017 PDFs have not been published yet and will be available in early 2017. So watch that space.
Thank you for all the information.
I just tried to download this, but the file is no longer found. Can someone send me a new link or the PDF file?
Sorry about that Kate, it must be that the original file location was lost or changed – because as you noted, apparently the link no longer worked…
But good news, we have just updated the link in the article above to reacquire a working copy of the free InDesign book.
Hope that helps!
The InDesign New Features Guide has been updated. It now includes InDesign CC (2018) new features, along with an updated index.
Thanks so much, James – your readers really appreciate it!
Why won’t the newest version of InDesign open my files?
Not sure, Cecily. Which files specifically are you talking about? And what exactly happens when you open them?
You might find this helpful:
The Adobe Creative Cloud (CC) File Compatibility Guide
In order to assist further, we’d need more details on your situation – thanks.
Direct links for PDF’s? InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop? thanks
You can find them all here. That’s how the author makes them available.
In each of the three guides, you’ll see a “Download PDF” icon at the lower left of your browser window.
Click that, and the PDF will immediately load into your browser. Then you can save the PDF file onto your own computer by clicking the Download icon at the upper right.