What is Adobe InDesign? An extensive guide

What is Adobe Indesign (Id)?

What is Adobe InDesign? Adobe InDesign is a publishing program that allows you to create professional-looking publications with relative ease. The design tool offers both standard and advanced features that can be used by beginners and professionals alike. Whether printing brochures for your business or creating an ad campaign, Adobe InDesign CC has the tools necessary to make your project work.

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What is InDesign CC?

Adobe InDesign CC is a powerful publishing tool that allows you to design layout-based content for print and digital devices. The software's interface makes it easy for users of all skill levels to jump right in and create their projects with ease, thanks to its variety of pre-installed templates, fonts, and other resources.

What is Adobe InDesign used for?

The application allows users to create professional-looking publications, ads, posters, and newsletters. It also offers advanced features for creating complex layouts that are often seen in magazines or marketing materials. Users can insert text boxes on images, control font styles across an entire document, edit pages directly from a tablet or mobile device, add hyperlinks to other pages in the publication, and more.

Who uses InDesign CC?

In addition to being used by graphic designers, Adobe InDesign can also be found in many K-12 schools and universities offering design courses. Many advertising agencies are using it for commercial projects. Web design firms utilize the software to create online marketing campaigns for their customers, while graphic art designers create CD covers, menus, and digital photo albums. Magazines also use InDesign for their article layouts for print and digital releases.

The Evolution of InDesign

Adobe has made several enhancements over the years that have improved its performance with each new version release. For example, users can now save projects as templates to save time on future projects. The software also allows users to switch between several languages, customize the workspace for their needs, and much more.

Requirements to install InDesign

Before you can download Adobe InDesign CC, make sure your computer meets the system requirements:



Multicore Intel processor (with 64-bit support) or AMD Athlon® 64 processor


Multicore Intel processor or Apple silicon/M1

SSE4.2 or higher SIMD engine

Operating system


Windows 10 (64-bit)

*Supported on Windows 10 versions 1809, 1909, 2004, 20H2, 21H1.


macOS version 11 (Big Sur), and macOS version 10.15 (Catalina).


Minimum 4 GB of RAM (16 GB recommended)

Hard disk space


3.6 GB* of available hard-disk space for installation


4.5 GB* of available hard-disk space for installation

*Additional free space required during installation (cannot install on removable flash storage devices). SSD is recommended.

Monitor resolution

1024 x 768 display (1920 X 1080 recommended), HiDPI display support

*Note: To use the InDesign Touch workspace, you must have a touch screen enabled tablet/monitor running Windows 10 or above (such as Microsoft Surface Pro 3) with the screen resolution set to 2160 x 1440 or more.

*For Scalable UI, the minimum monitor resolution required is 1920 x 1080.

Supported Video adapter

Video card - 32-bit video card

Metal GPU

To use GPU Performance, your Mac should have a minimum of 1024 MB of VRAM (2 GB recommended), and your computer must support Metal.

Metal GPU feature is supported on:

iMac 4K

iMac 5K

MacBook Pro Retina

Mac Pro connected to a HiDPI monitor

Mac mini connected to a HiDPI monitor

To check for VRAM value, choose Mac > About This Mac (Graphics information).

Adobe InDesign basic and new Features

The application contains an intuitive user interface that has remained essentially unchanged over the years to allow users who know how to work in previous versions to begin using Adobe InDesign CC right away. The latest release is compatible with both Mac OS and Windows operating systems, allowing users to create a consistent workflow no matter what type of computer they are using.

Some of the recent feature additions that Adobe has included with InDesign are:

Versions - save multiple versions of your file to compare changes.

Enhanced Layout Adjustment panel - improved options for changing text alignment, object appearance, and more.

PANTONE color library integration - access PANTONE swatch libraries directly from the Swatches panel in InDesign CC.

Typekit font syncing with Typekit desktop fonts - sync Adobe Typekit fonts from your desktop to InDesign

Adobe Stock - access a selection of more than 70 million high-quality photos, vectors, and illustrations directly in the Creative Cloud Library.

Enterprise-ready publishing solution - offer professional digital publication for tablets and mobile devices with multilingual support, RTL layout options, ePub export, and more.

Adobe InDesign CC has a carefully designed workspace that allows you to easily access your tools and panels and adjust the layout according to your preferences without any trouble. The software's intuitive interface makes it easy for users of all skill levels to jump right in and create their projects with ease, thanks to its variety of pre-installed templates, fonts, and other resources.

Collaborations and Workflow Integrations

Adobe InDesign allows you to save your projects as templates for future use to speed up the design process. You can also save your layouts as master pages to apply them across multiple publications. The software allows you to collaborate with other applications in the Creative Cloud, including Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator CC, for a seamless workflow experience.

How much does Adobe InDesign cost?

Adobe offers several options for purchasing its products, depending on how you will use them.

The Adobe Creative Cloud software is available for a monthly fee, which offers access to all of the applications in the suite and Photoshop CC, Illustrator CC, Premiere Pro, After Effects, and more. You have the option to download individual apps or purchase the entire package.

The entire Adobe CC package costs $79.49 per month.

If you wish to purchase Adobe InDesign by itself, InDesign cost starts at $31.49 per month.

Learning how to use Adobe InDesign CC

We offer a range of courses that will help you learn Adobe InDesign CC online, including the Beginner's Guide to the Creative Cloud and Specialized Training for Publishers.

Each of our courses has been designed to give students a thorough understanding of the software to start using it right away.

Where can I download Adobe InDesign CC?

You can download Adobe InDesign CC from Creative Cloud by visiting this link.

After you create an account, you will have access to all of your applications in one place for easy management and installation on multiple devices. You can also get started with a free trial of Adobe Creative Cloud before deciding whether or not to purchase the monthly software.

Getting an Adobe InDesign CC Professional Certification

We offer Adobe InDesign training online that will prepare you for the Adobe Certified Professional Exam. . If you believe that you are prepared to take the exam, we provide a low InDesign cost Certification exam for just $149.


Now that you know what Adobe InDesign CC is, download your free trial and give the software a try. We offer a range of courses to help you learn Adobe InDesign CC online and become an expert in no time.

Learn More!

Click here to explore the many products that Adobe has to offer.

Check out our complete collection of videos on YouTube.

To be part of a growing community in the digital world, join our Facebook group and ask any Adobe InDesign questions you have!

How To Use Adobe InDesign

How To Use Adobe InDesign

The information on this page is intended to help members of the Boston University community utilize their Adobe Creative Cloud license, specifically the Adobe InDesign application. For instructional pages on other Adobe products, please visit our main How-To index.

What is Adobe InDesign?

InDesign is Adobe’s layout and page design software for print and digital media, such as flyers, posters, stationary, slideshows, and more. BU educators and students can supplement pages of text with shapes and images to add professionalism and personality to documents.

Get Started with Adobe InDesign

Are you looking to spruce up your text documents or illustrate a message to your audience through static pages? Learning about the tools available in Adobe InDesign through Adobe Tutorials offers the ability to turn your ideas into reality. These videos walk through the fundamentals of layout design as well as many example projects to create presentations, reports, and more for the classroom.

For additional videos and tutorials, visit Adobe InDesign Learn & Support.

View other video tutorials via Boston University’s MyMedia Adobe Channel.

BU Educators: Connect with a Learning Community

Digital Learning & Innovation is committed to building learning communities and creating gathering places for Boston University leadership, faculty, and staff technology users to share ideas, meet and connect with colleagues, and discuss platforms designed to improve students’ learning experiences. All of our communities of practice meet via Zoom or in-person and are supported by Digital Learning & Innovation, Educational Technology, and Center for Teaching & Learning staff.

Trainings & Workshops

Learn more about Adobe InDesign and view upcoming trainings and workshops: BU TechWeb Trainings.

Technology Support for Adobe InDesign

Connect with the Educational Technology team with questions or schedule a consultation at

Teaching Guides & Resources

Email the Center for Teaching & Learning and schedule an appointment today

What is Adobe InDesign? An extensive guide

Marketing technology

by Amelie Timm |

Adobe InDesign has stunning potential and features that strengthen project layouts. Focus on learning the ins and outs to succeed with future design schemes. The following is a complex breakdown of the basic and advanced InDesign functions.

What is InDesign?

Adobe InDesign is a software tool used to create extensive print and digital projects, including things like newspapers, books and brochures. InDesign is typically used by graphic designers, though it’s not uncommon for marketers to use the tool as well.

The standard file format for InDesign is the INDD – the official InDesign file extension. Anytime a project is saved with InDesign, it will be in the form of INDD. Adobe InDesign is highly accessible, programmed to work for users on both the Mac and Windows operating systems.

InDesign basics

Adobe InDesign creates some of the most eye-catching brochures, posters and business cards. InDesign projects fascinate audiences in both digital and print formats. This desktop publishing software creates a wide array of content involving detailed design and graphics. Organizations, artists and graphic designers all need to understand the InDesign basics.

Adobe InDesign software is operational on both Windows and Mac operating systems. It quickly imports many common image file types. InDesign is optimal when creating projects with multiple pages. Take note of the basic ideas of the software to gauge how you could create beautiful, professional designs.

Important advanced features

Complex functions improve content and design professionalism. Learn the intricacies of Adobe InDesign to ensure project success and fulfill design campaigns. Examining specific functions of the software is a great start to improve project design. The following are three crucial features advanced users habitually reference:

Master Page Function. If a project requires a multi-page design publication, the default software should be InDesign. This is due to the fact it automatically numbers pages and provides the master page function. This allows users to edit numerous pages using a single edit. Resizing Content in Frames. A vital part of InDesign is resizing content. Furthermore, learning to change the size of content separate from frame size is a big help to completing projects. Make sure you resize content to maintain integrity of images and alter publications correctly. Utilize Integrations. There’s a possibility that systems you already use have an integration feature with Adobe InDesign. Canto’s digital asset management, for example, allows direct links from InDesign to a digital asset management library. Investigate integrations such as these further to simplify projects.

Explore these elements and add them to your repertoire to advance InDesign projects. Though these are crucial functions of advancing familiarity with InDesign, they’re only the beginning of a continuous process to master the system.

When to use InDesign

Pinpoint the campaigns that use the InDesign file extension ahead of time by learning which specific tasks are best completed using the InDesign system. The key thing to keep in mind is design with large amounts of text are the specialty of InDesign. This creates a blanket of publications that should be completed using the software, including things like books, posters and magazines.

When a project is multiple pages in length, Adobe InDesign should be the first software to use. As explained earlier, it works great with multi-page projects because of the auto-numbering and master page functions.

Gain a good foundation of knowledge for Adobe InDesign to kick start your future design campaigns. Begin adding valuable features to projects by understanding this important system.

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