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A simple class to handle file management of Adobe InDesign IDML files.

dev-master 2018-01-12 15:54 UTC

This package is auto-updated.

Last update: 2020-03-27 09:29:57 UTC


A simple class to handle file management of Adobe InDesign IDML files. Keeping track of all the individual files within an .idml package is a chore. This helps a bit. (A bit.)


composer require prometee/php-idml    


Instantiate the object:

require __DIR__.'/../vendor/autoload.php';
$idml = new \IDML\Package();

This will unzip filename.idml to a directory called .filename.idml. This directory will be deleted when the object is garbage-collected (see the __destruct() method). Alternatively, if you keep your IDMLs stored unzipped, a directory can also be passed to the constructor:

require __DIR__.'/../vendor/autoload.php';
$idml = new \IDML\Package();

This directory will not be deleted upon object destruction. (Admittedly this is not a typical use-case but happened to be how the project I was working on stored things.)

The IDML\Package object is essentially a file manager/server of DOMDocument objects for all the internal files. That's most of what this class does.

$spreads = $idml->getSpreads();
$storyu12a = $idml->getStory("u12a");
$backingStory = $idml->getBackingStory();
// etc

Generally if you want Whatever, use getWhatever(). You likely won't need to use any of the setters but they're there if you want to do something weird. Note getSpread() is a convenience method that gets the first spread, operating under the assumption that there is only one. This applied to the project from which this class was born, but may not apply to yours. This method is also used in the addElementToSpread() method if a spread is not explicitly provided. Use caution.

Notable Methods

These are just the most generic methods that existed in the project-specific version of this class. I have put zero effort into trying to make this a generically useful class.

  • getLayers($selfsOnly, $visibleOnly): Returns an array of layers from the designmap.xml of this IDML. It can either return the layer elements (DOMNodes) or the self attributes (e.g. "u12a") of the layers. The $visibleOnly flag determines whether non-visible layers should be included.
  • getElementBySelfAttribute($self): Returns the element identified by $self from whatever file it lives in. So if you're looking for <Rectangle Self="u12a"> but don't know if it's in a spread or a story, use this. Throws if it fails but I can't imagine you'd be looking for an element by using an arbitrary self attribute. If you do, wrap this call in a try/catch block.
  • addStoryToDesignMap($val): If you've created a new story, this is a quick method to add your story to the package and put it in the designmap.xml so InDesign can find it. $val needs to be a DOMDocument.
  • getAppliedStyle($node): given a CharacterStyleRange or ParagraphStyleRange element, this method will return the associated CharacterStyle or ParagraphStyle node from the Styles.xml file.
  • getStyleAttribute($node, $attr): given a CharacterStyleRange or ParagraphStyleRange node and the name of an attribute, this method will return the value of that attribute as thoroughly as possible by checking the node, its applied style node, and its parent and parent's applied style nodes (if applicable).
  • getStyleProperty($node, $prop): the same as getStyleAttribute() but for properties rather than attributes.
  • getMarkupTag($node): Get the tag associated with a given element (DOMNode) - or an ancestor. It searches every element from $node up and returns the first tag it finds. This logic may not exactly jibe with how tags are intended to work in IDML; it does what I need it to do for my project but may not work for you. The tag it returns is urldecode()ed.
  • saveAll($zip_file_path): Save all the files in the IDML. There are individual save methods for saving various pieces but why bother? Just use this one.

Everything else you'll just have to figure out on your own.