Convert PostScript to Encapsulated PostScript Interchange format

Table of contents

The information in this document was contributed by George Cameron <>; please direct to him any questions about it. Because the software described here is no longer being maintained, this document may be obsolete, or inconsistent with ps2epsi.1.

For other information, see the Ghostscript overview.


ps2epsi is a utility based on Ghostscript, which takes as input a PostScript file and generates as output a new file which conforms to Adobe's Encapsulated PostScript Interchange (EPSI) format, a special form of Encapsulated PostScript (EPS) which adds to the beginning of the file, as PostScript comments, a low-resolution monochrome bitmap image of the final displayed page. Programs which understand EPSI can use this bitmap as a preview on screen of the full PostScript page. The displayed quality is often not very good, but the final printed version uses the "real" PostScript, and thus has the normal full PostScript quality.

Framemaker can use EPSI

The Adobe Framemaker DTP system is one application which understands EPSI files, and ps2epsi has been tested using Framemaker 3.0 on a Sun workstation with a number of PostScript diagrams from a variety of sources. Framemaker on other platforms may also be able to use files made with ps2epsi, although this has not been tested.



Using the supplied batch file ps2epsi.bat, the command is

ps2epsi outfile.epi

where is the original PostScript file, and outfile.epi is the output EPSI file to be created.


Using the supplied shell script ps2epsi, the command is

ps2epsi [outfile.epsi]

where is the input file and outfile.epsi is the output EPSI file to be created. If the output filename is omitted, ps2epsi generates one from the input filename; and any standard extension (.ps, .cps, .eps or .epsf) of the input file is replaced in the output file with the extension .epsi.


Not all PostScript files can be encapsulated, because there are restrictions in what is permitted in a PostScript file for it to be properly encapsulated. ps2epsi does a little extra work to try to help encapsulation, and it automatically calculates the bounding box required for all encapsulated PostScript files, so most of the time it does a pretty good job. There are certain to be cases, however, when encapsulation fails because of the nature of the original PostScript file.


ps2epsi files
File     Contents

ps2epsi.htm   This document
ps2epsi.bat   MS-DOS batch file
ps2epsi   Unix shell script   Ghostscript program which does the work

Copyright © 1998, 2000 Aladdin Enterprises. All rights reserved.

This software is provided AS-IS with no warranty, either express or implied. This software is distributed under license and may not be copied, modified or distributed except as expressly authorized under the terms of the license contained in the file LICENSE in this distribution. For more information about licensing, please refer to For information on commercial licensing, go to or contact Artifex Software, Inc., 101 Lucas Valley Road #110, San Rafael, CA 94903, U.S.A., +1(415)492-9861.

Ghostscript version 8.11, 16 August 2003