Troubleshooting: QuarkXPress & Lion

I just read a helpful thread on the Apple support forum about how to handle problems that may appear when opening an old QuarkXPress document on a new Mac or new Mac OS.

The techniques apply to any version of QuarkXPress, and any Mac OS. Essentially, they are:

  • Disable your fonts. Some fonts may not be as healthy as they could be, and can cause problems. If your document opens and can be edited, then you know there was a font problem and you’ll need to replace the font or fonts.
  • Hold down the Alt/Option key when clicking “Open” in the Open dialog box (File> Open). This will rebuild the document using the latest text engine in QuarkXPress. This is actually the RECOMMENDED way to open older documents into QuarkXPress, on a Mac or Windows!
  • If you have any QuarkXPress Preferences files in the root Library folder (Macintosh/Library/Preferences/Quark), move them to your Desktop and re-launch QuarkXPress. They shouldn’t be at the root level (which is for all users), but rather in your User Library folder ([username]/Library/Preferences/Quark). While you’re at it, move the Preferences file from your User Library folder to the Desktop as well. QuarkXPress will build a new Preferences file in your User Library folder. If the problem goes away, then great! If not, you can move your Preferences file back into your User Library folder and try another troubleshooting approach.
  • Use the Append feature to bring older documents into a newer document: create a new document, choose File> Append and then select your old document. It will be added as a new Layout in your current Project, all cleaned up and ready to go. (One hopes!)
  • Contact Quark’s free technical support at

Read the entire thread at

Jay Nelson is the editorial director of, and the editor and publisher of Design Tools Monthly. He’s also the author of the QuarkXPress 8 and QuarkXPress 7 training titles at, as well as the training videos Quark includes in the box with QuarkXPress 7 . In addition, Jay writes regularly for Macworld and Photoshop User magazines and speaks at industry events.

4 thoughts on “Troubleshooting: QuarkXPress & Lion

  1. I have designing and creating layouts for 20 years. Never in all my publishing career have I been more frustrated with Quark then now. I have changed my format from PC to MAC to PC just to keep working in Quark. I blame all the Gates programers who started this whole upgrade thing. Jay Nelson I tried everything including the posted comments from every Quark and non-Quark forum. I simply am not a computer / software guru. I just want to continue designing in the program I am familiar. Please is there anyone out there that has a workable solution. At this point I better off going back to paste-up and scanning my artwork than utilizing the amazing fast computers. Here is the issue:
    My vintage mini mac OS Tiger 4.1.3 or what every, motherboard failed. So I was recommended to buy a Lion mini mac which was exciting until I tried to reactivate the Quark 8.02 and crashed every time. So I got on their website and again as recommend by others continued to update to 8.5.1 which also failed and crashed. Now I am chatting with someone in india, some help desk individual who gives me a activation code but did warn me that “YOU MUST UPGRADE TO 9” spend more money this is compatible. Hog wash! Well there you have it. Help Help Help not from Quark. You are on your own risk in this world of technology.

  2. Carmen: we’re using QuarkXPress 8 and 9 on both Snow Leopard and Lion, without problems. I’m guessing there is an installation problem on your Mac. (Ugh!)

    If it were me, I would throw away the QuarkXPress folder, and then reinstall the program from the original disc. (And apply the latest updates.)

    If THAT doesn’t work, then I’d get back in touch with their tech support — painful as that sounds…

  3. Jay: Thanks for your tip. My 28 year old son who is a computer guru took the challenge and found the cure. I now have my Quark 8 working so far…Knock on Wood! LOL
    I will ask my son to post the solution tomorrow for others to see.
    “That’s a wrap” as they say in the movies.
    til next time.

  4. Seshathri Vasan

    Dear all,

    I am working in a reprint quark file with xpress math, I finished this job but while creating pdf i face some problem one error message showing:

    “The PostScript driver has not responded for 60 seconds. There could be an error or a normal delay caused by the complexity of the layout. Would you like to continue trying?”

    I am unable to create pdf please help me…


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