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Moving your Find-Change Queries to InDesign CC

Received an email from a Perth InDesign User Group member today who’s moved from InDesign CS6 to Creative Cloud Membership:

Do you know if there is an easy way to move or copy saved GREP queries from the Find/Change area of InDesign?

OK, I’m not sure the following classifies as an ‘easy way’ but there is ‘a way’… I’ve done a quick test and can say that you can copy saved Find/Change Queries from InDesign Version 8.0 (CS6) to Version 9.0 (CC).  They should  work as they did in CS6. However, let us know if there are issues in doing this, and we’ll update this post to include that additional information.

[insert July 3, 2013] You can use this trick to also move/copy Workspaces, Menu Sets and Shortcuts across to InDesign CC. (thank you Rolando for adding that to the comments section).

Copying Find/Change Queries to InDesign CC

Before you follow these instructions: Keep in mind that the instructions below copy ALL of the saved Find/Change queries.

If you are only interested in copying certain saved queries, or want to add saved queries to saved queries you’ve build in InDesign CC, you’d need to open up the sub-folders and only copy those queries you’d like to move across.

Step 1 – Quit InDesign

  • Quit out of InDesign.

Step 2 – for Mac Users

On the Mac you’ll need to navigate to: Users/[yourname]/Library/Preferences/Adobe InDesign/Version 8.0/en_US

If you are running OSX 10.7 or higher you’ll need to use a little trick to get into the Library folder as it is hidden by default: In the Finder, press the Option-key on your keyboard and choose Library from the Go menu.

Step 2 – for Windows users

On the PC you’ll need to navigate to:
C:\Users\[yourname]\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\InDesign\Version 8.0\en_US

If you don’t see the AppData folder, you’ll first need to ensure you can see the hidden files on your system:

  • Open the Control Panel.
  • Click Appearance and Personalization
  • Click Show hidden files and folders under the Folder Options heading.
  • Select Show hidden files, folders, and drives in the Folder Options dialog.

On Windows 7 you access the Control Panel from the Start menu in lower left.

On Windows 8, display the Charm bar, by clicking in the lower right of the screen. Click Search, and type Control Panel.

Step 3 – Copying

Note: If you are running another language version of InDesign you’d navigate to the appropriate language folder. For example if you’ve installed the International English version of InDesign you’d navigate to the en_GB folder.

  • Select the folder ‘Find-Change Queries’ in the language folder in Version 8.0.
  • Press Cmd+C to copy it.
  • Navigate to and Open the Version 9.0/en_US folder
  • Press Cmd+V to paste the Find-Change Queries folder.

The Find/Change queries should now be available in InDesign CC when you launch it.

Happy Find/Changing :)

Cari Jansen

Cari Jansen

Cari Jansen is based in Perth, Western Australia and works throughout Australia as a technical writer/editor, print, electronic (EPUB, Kindle, Tablets, Adobe DPS) and eLearning publishing consultant, software trainer, course developer, and public speaker. She's an Adobe Certified Instructor (Adobe Acrobat, Digital Publishing Suite, Illustrator, InDesign, Photoshop), Adobe Certified Expert (Adobe Captivate and Muse) and an Adobe Community Professional and Adobe Training Partner based in Australia. In 2008 she founded the Perth inDesign User Group, which she ran until late 2013. You'll meet Cari at industry events, both as an attendee and speaker, speaking on a range of print and digital publishing technologies and trends. To learn more about Cari, visit her web-site: You can also follow her on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus and YouTube
Cari Jansen

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12 Comments on “Moving your Find-Change Queries to InDesign CC

    • All settings from this folder can be moved to new version, although I was warned by David a few days ago some experienced stability issues.
      I had no problems and I still use some settings created in cs3. But I guess its not a bad idea to make a backup first.

      • ha ha that’s incredible Benjamin. Wouldn’t have dared doing that myself to be honest… and have to agree with David… if your InDesign starts behaving strangely… probably time to rebuild some of them :)

  1. @Camilo, Yes, you can do the same for “[nameofyourshorcuts].indk” files located in the ‘InDesign Shortcut Sets” folder and copy them to a similar named folder inside the en_US folder in Version 9.0. I’ve run a small test and it works just fine from what I can tell.

  2. Yup! This all worked for me… hallelujah! I thought I was going to have to set everything up again. Workspaces, Menu Sets, Shortcuts, Find-Change Queries … everything came over perfectly from CS6 to CC.

    Hurray and thanks!

  3. This is the way it works at least since CS3. I always moved queries, keyboard shortcuts, and glyph sets just in this way.

    • Ralf :) True… for some reason it comes up as a question with each new release. One day Adobe will hopefully introduce a ‘import presets’ (similar to what you see on first launch of Photoshop CC) in InDesign and we won’t have to worry about the manual copying and pasting :)

  4. For some reason when I need to save the query and give it a name the alert ‘Something went wrong.’ pops up. It doesnt seem to create the ‘Queries’ folder in the script panel. I dont know much about coding and I really would like this script to work – I am using CS6.

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