Because of the range and combinations of software, operating systems and browsers on campus, problems may arise when attempting to use the EPS files offered on this site. We will catalog known issues on this page as we discover them. If you don't see an answer to your circumstance here, contact Amy Easum at 316-978-7285 or email

Last updated 1/2/20

Getting a transparent background in Microsoft Publisher.

Images imported into Microsoft Publisher versions 2007 and 2010 will always show white background initially regardless of file type. Happily, both versions of Publisher have transparency tools that can remove that background.

In the 2007 version, you must have the Picture Toolbar visible when you select the image. Then choose the Set Transparency Color tool in the toolbar. Click on the background color you want to remove an you're done.

In the 2010 version, select the image and then click the Format tab in Picture Tools section. Click on Recolor and then choose Set Transparent Color from the menu. Click on the background color you want to remove an you're done.

I downloaded the Zip file for the EPS, but can't open the graphic.

The EPS files on this site are compressed as Zip files to preserve their file type. When you download a Zip file in WindowsXP, you are given an option to "Open" or "Save" the file. If you choose "Open" the EPS file will automatically be extracted. If you choose "Save" the Zip file will be downloaded intact. If you saved the Zip file, double-clicking doesn't open the graphic -- instead it simply extracts the compressed information and places the EPS somewhere on your computer (The location varies depending on platform or preferences settings).

To find the extracted file, click on the Windows "Start" button and do a search for the word "naming" (all files carry the title "WSU_naming_unit..."). On Mac, search for the file using the the "Find" command in the Finder's "File" menu or by clicking the Spotlight icon in the upper right hand corner of the screen.

If still you can't find the EPS file, or are working on an operating system older than WindowsXP, contact Tim Hart at 266-6192 or at

EPS won't open in my version of Illustrator.

The EPS files on the Visual Standards site have been saved as Illustrator CS1 files. If you use an older version of Illustrator and can't open the files, a legacy version can be made for you. Contact Amy Easum at 316-978-7285 or email

EPS opens as a pdf on Mac.

If the EPS file does not match your version of Illustrator, Apple's Preview application may step in as the default program. Preview can't open EPS files natively, however, so it converts the file to a PDF.

To preserve the functionality of the EPS, open Illustrator and use its "Open" command (Command-O) to open the file, or drag the EPS onto the Illustrator icon.

To avoid future problems, you can select any EPS file and "Get Info" (Command-I) and go to the "Open with" panel to instruct your Mac to open all EPS files in Illustrator.

Known problems with EPS files in InDesign

Some versions of InDesign have problems exporting EPS format to PDF when the "place" command is used to import the file. The EPS may display and print correctly, preserving the transparent background of the EPS file. However, when you export the InDesign file to a PDF, a white background appears behind the EPS image.

Another problem can occur when the EPS color is changed to white. In that case, the image may completely disappear when the "place" command is used. It won't appear in print or in export to PDF.

For these issues there are two workarounds.

  • You can open the EPS in Illustrator and save as an .ai file. InDesign's "place" command has no trouble with .ai files.
  • Alternately, you can drag the EPS directly from an open Illustrator window into an InDesign document. The image will retain its vectors and can be resized without pixelation.