Release Notes
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November 2017: There’s a new version of Xara Photo & Graphic Designer, available now. Owners of Photo & Graphic Designer with an active Update Service can update for free, but note you will need to download the new version, there is no auto-update. Scroll through this document to see a description of all the new features, or click the links below as a shortcut to any topic of interest.


Release Notes
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The latest Photo & Graphic Designer has a new ‘auto-fit’ capability that enables you to create flexible documents that adapt to almost any size change you or your customer might want. For example you can now easily change a design from A3 to A4, or A4 to US letter, or from portrait to landscape. It’s especially useful for social media, where you can adapt a design from (for example) Facebook into Twitter, Linkedin and Instragram by simply changing page types. The default position is for all items on a page to be automatically repositioned when you change the page size, but Designer actually offers a great deal of flexibility if you want to control how particular items in your design behave. We have created a separate document covering these advanced options here.

Text Improvements

List Styles

Text styles now support formatting of bulleted and numbered lists. To make a list style, first create a list and customize it using the List Properties dialog. Then place the text caret in the list, or select part of the list, and choose Create style … from the text styles dropdown list. Choose a name for your list style and click ok. List styles appear in the styles list marked with so you can distinguish them from paragraph and character styles. List item 1 level 1 List item 1 level 2 List item 1 level 2 List item 2 level 1 List item 3 level 1 List item 3 level 2 List styles include all the list settings you see in the List Properties dialog, from indents to bullet symbols and colors. Each level within a list can have different settings and these are also all recorded in the list style. The example above has only 2 levels of list, but you can have as many levels as you like. To update a list style, simply modify a list that uses the style and then use the Update option in the styles list, the same way you update ordinary paragraph styles. Graphical lists (where you can use any graphical object as the bullet or number) are not yet supported with list styles.
Release Notes
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Next paragraph style This is one of the settings for a text style. For paragraph styles it determines what style should be applied by default to a new paragraph created following the current paragraph. For example heading styles normally set the Next paragraph style to Normal text, because that’s usually what you want immediately following a heading. With a list style however, it’s more likely that you want another list item to be added when you hit return at the end of a list item. So for list styles the Next paragraph setting is only used when you end a list. End a list by hitting return once to add an empty list item, then hit return again. The new non-list paragraph will then use whatever Next paragraph style you chose for the list style.

Anchored objects and text flow

Anchored objects now have a new setting that determines what happens when they reach the bottom of the text area to which they are anchored. Usually it’s not desirable to have the object extending below the bottom of the text area, or even perhaps partially off the page. Instead it’s better to force the text to which the object is anchored to flow to the next page or column, taking the anchored object with it. Therefore this is now the default behavior for newly anchored objects. However it’s controlled with a new Affect text flow  checkbox in the Repelling & Anchoring dialog, so you can turn this off if required. And it’s off for existing anchored objects, to avoid changing the way existing documents are formatted.

Embedded object nesting

Designer now has improved support for nesting of embedded objects in text. For example objects embedded into a text panel, that is itself embedded in the main text flow of a document, now work correctly.

Spell Checker language property

Photo & Graphic Designer now has a new “language” document property. This determines what language new text added to the document will be set to, for the purposes of spell checking, instead of assuming the document language should be the same as the language your device is set to. This new property can be seen and modified with the new Document language option in the Spell Checker menu in the Text Tool. You can still set any text in your document to any language, regardless of what the “Document language” property is set to, so you can still have a mixture of languages in your documents when required. If you change the current document language, you are asked whether all existing text in the document should also be set to the chosen language, or left unchanged. When you open an older document, the document language is automatically set according to the language on the Normal text style in that document. Newly created documents have their document language set to match the language setting of the current device, as with previous versions of Designer.
Release Notes
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Text Panel Alignment options

Text panels can now be top aligned, center aligned, or bottom aligned. Click the bottom left corner handle to cycle through the three alignment options for your panel. If you hold the mouse pointer over this handle, the tool-tip that appears shows you the current alignment setting for the panel. If the panel is full of text with no empty vertical space, then it will look the same no matter which of the three alignment options are selected. But the alignment setting also determines how the panel grows and shrinks, as text is added or deleted, so the setting is still relevant even for ‘full’ panels. Top aligned panels will always grow and shrink from the bottom, with the top edge staying fixed. Bottom aligned panels are the other way around - they grow upwards with the bottom edge fixed, so these are commonly used at the bottom of pages. And centered panels will grow and shrink equally at the top and bottom, so the center of the panel is fixed. Text Panel size Text panels are now also better at remembering the vertical size you have given them. Drag the bottom center or top center handles to change the vertical panel height. If you ever add more text than can fit into the panel at that height, the panel will grow to accommodate the additional text. But if you later remove text, the panel will shrink back no further than the height you last set using the height adjustment handles. This helps to keep panel sizes consistent, which is useful where you have a panel occupying a defined space or aligned vertically with other panels or objects of the same height.
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Font type in font menu

The Font type now appears in the font menu - usually either OpenType or TrueType as designated by the accompanying symbol.

SmartShapes and Symbols

Flowline SmartShapes

Great for flowcharts, diagrams, exploded views, etc. The Flowlines behave just like Arrows, in that you can change the heads and tails, apply rotation, thickness and so on - as well as having 90° segments which you can drag to reposition. Find them in the Arrows folder - Insert > Shape > Arrows…                        

Replace Symbol

To replace a symbol, right-click on it and choose Replace symbol… from the context menu. This brings up the symbol picker, where you can search for a new symbol. You can also use this operation in bulleted lists to replace the symbol used for the bullet points. Place the text caret in the list, right-click and choose Replace symbol… this now also works if the symbol is inside a group so you don’t have to perform a “select inside” operation first.
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Object Handling

Live copies

Live Copies give you a way of having multiple copies of an object that are linked together so that if one copy is changed they all change. However each Live Copy can be transformed independently, so for example you could have larger and smaller versions of the same Live Copy, or perhaps copies with different rotations. Live Copies are similar to Repeating Objects, but more powerful because you can have multiple Live Copies on the same page and they do not share a common position in the way that Repeating Objects do. Creating Live Copies You can turn any object or group into a Live Copy. Just select the object and choose "Arrange" > "Live Copy" > "Create Live Copy". A second copy of the object appears and the two copies are 'linked' in that if either one is edited the other copy updates to match. But you can move and transform the two objects independently, placing them on the same page or on different pages. You can make more copies of the Live Copy the same way you copy normal objects, using copy/paste, duplicate, right-click drag, etc.. Each copy you make belongs to the same 'family' of Live Copies and so editing one also changes all the others. Try this with an example: 1. Draw a hexagon using the Quickshape Tool and make it red. 2. Go back to the Selector Tool. With the hexagon selected, choose "Arrange" > "Live Copy" > "Create Live Copy". Or right click and choose "Live Copy" > "Create Live Copy" from the drop-down menu. 3. A second copy of the hexagon appears and selecting either copy shows "1 live copy" on the status line. 4. Make several more copies of the object, using copy/paste, or any other means. Note that each is a "live copy" according the status line when you select them. 5. Go back into the Quickshape Tool and click on any one of the red hexagons. Note the status line says "1 Quickshape 'inside'". That shows that you've selected the Quickshape object inside the Live Copy group. 6. Change the number of sides on the Quickshape from 6 to 8, using the control on the InfoBar. All copies of the hexagons instantly become octagons.

Scribble selection

In the Selector Tool, drag with "Alt" held down and instead of dragging a box, a freehand line is draw. Every object that is touched by the line becomes selected. Hence you can drag the mouse around the page, touching all the objects that you want to select.
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Custom shortcut key configuration

This utility provides an easy and direct way to configure key shortcuts. It allows you to define a shortcut for a command which doesn't have a shortcut by default, or to change a command's shortcut. To open the Shortcut Tool, select Customize Key shortcuts... from the Utilities menu.

Performance Enhancements

64-bit version

Xara Photo & Graphic Designer now takes advantage of the power of 64 bit, if your computer supports it, enabling you to create larger, more content rich documents.

Multi-core processors

Xara Photo & Graphic Designer now has support for multi-core processors making it even faster than before.

Color Separations & CMYK 16-bit support

Xara Photo & Graphic Designer now supports the conversion of RGB, HSV and grayscale colors to CMYK, and offers detailed imagesetting controls, for professional commercial printing. This adds 2 new tabs to the Print > Options  dialog. One for Imagesetting and the other for Separations. The Imagesetting dialog gives control over printer's marks and film settings and the Separations dialog gives control over color separations and PostScript printer settings. For more detail see the Imagesetting chapter in the Photo & Graphic Designer onboard help pages.  
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Other Content & Improvements

6 new text panels New social media templates PDF/X export PDF import improvements Word import improvements JPEG XR import Various other minor fixes and improvements.  
Release Notes