Will QuarkXPress 6.5 Run On Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard?

Apple released new MacBooks and MacBook Pros recently, and today I received a question about whether it was safe to use QuarkXPress 6.52 with Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard.

The answer is: QuarkXPress 6.52 and earlier will NOT work 100% properly with Leopard (nor does Adobe Creative Suite 2, which is of the same vintage). And unfortunately, since no recent Macs can run on earlier operating systems, you’ll need to either upgrade QuarkXPress or find a used Mac that can run 10.4 or 10.3. (I’d strongly encourage upgrading QuarkXPress!)

You see, Mac OS X 10.5 was nowhere on the horizon when Quark shipped QuarkXPress 6. In fact Mac OS X 10.3 was current when QuarkXPress 6 was released, almost two full years before Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger, which was the predecessor to 10.5. Apple changed a LOT of basic-level things from 10.3 to 10.4, and then again in 10.5.

Since I couldn’t find a one-stop source that listed the problems you’re likely to encounter when trying to use QuarkXPress 6.5 in Mac OS X 10.5, I thought I’d try to collect as many broken bits as I could find.

Picking through Quark’s user forums, here are the problems I found so far:

  • File corruption, especially when opened across a network.
  • Unexpected quits when saving a file.
  • “Unexpected end-of-file occurred. [-39]” errors.
  • Font confusion in existing documents, especially Zapf Dingbats.
  • Fonts don’t print correctly, defaulting to Courier.
  • Loss of some printing capabilities.
  • Loss of printer PPD file location.
  • Loss of PDF generation.
  • Not everything shows up in menu items, dialog box components, or palettes.
  • Can’t input values for new Section.
  • Can’t input values when adding pages.
  • Can’t input values for Step and Repeat.
  • If you hide the application, it sometimes won’t come back — you have to force quit it.

As you can see, it isn’t pretty. You may not run into all of these problems, but even one or two would be a showstopper for me.

And before you ask: QuarkXPress 7.5 works relatively well in Leopard, except for the window hiding issues and the PPD file location issue noted above. For a solution to the PPD problem, see here.

If anyone has additional problems running QuarkXPress 6.5 in Leopard, we’d love to hear about them — just use the comments feature below. (But please, keep it to version 6.5 AND Mac OS X 10.5!)