How to open a Microsoft publisher file on your Macintosh


Microsoft publisher has been around for a long time but  it has never been able to run on Apple computers.   If you’re like me you  probably have friends who have Microsoft publisher files they occasionally email you. Sadly there is no way to open  a Microsoft publisher file on a Mac, until now…

Here are two websites that can convert Microsoft publisher files to PDF.

You can then open, read and print the pdf file on your Mac. You can even edit them.

I have tested both of these conversion sites and they both work pretty well.  They are both free.

Site one is easier, to use, just read the instructions below, but I’ve included two sites just in case one of them goes down or doesn’t work for you.


126 responses to “How to open a Microsoft publisher file on your Macintosh”

  1. John

    Huge thanks for tip. works great for converting pesky pub files to pdf.

  2. Alldaryl

    i was very nervous about doing this. Virus fears and all that. How ever it worked a treat. well please thanks to and the makers!

  3. sandrine

    Thank you very much! Was really helpful

  4. Chris

    Another big thumbs up for Online2PDF – thanks a lot for writing about it!

  5. Al

    How do we pay the makers? I want to thank them in a way that will encourage them to keep on making new content!

  6. Elsa

    THANK YOU!!!!!! I have been looking for a program forever and this is excellent. Would you mind if I share?

  7. Peter De Vile

    This is wonderful! Many thanks

  8. Sue

    This was exactly what I was looking for. It worked like a charm. Thank you!!

  9. Ben

    online2pdf is amazing! It changed my .pub files PERFECTLY unlike zamzar.

  10. Modern Microsoft Office variants (from 2013 I think) have the option to save Publisher files as PDFs too.

  11. theresa


  12. Mackenzie

    The second one is a waste of time, just fyi. I had to enter my email and then it said it would send me the file in 30 minutes unless I downloaded the application. The first one converted it online and automatically downloaded within 30 seconds – worked perfectly. Thanks!

  13. Peri

    The first one worked great really easy to use, liked that I didn’t have to sign up/subscribe to use it. The only drawback I found was when I tried to copy/paste some text it came out in another language.
    I didn’t bother with the second site when the first one worked straight away.

  14. Princess Pamela

    Great Success! Thank you!!! PDF files being converted to Word is a wonderful thing :)

  15. Thanks!! The first one worked a treat and was so fast.

  16. Martin

    These did not work for me!!!

  17. first one worked for me

  18. Tunji

    Thanks a million. It works

  19. Jules

    Thank you!

  20. Ally

    I have Parallels Desktop on my mac and have been opening publisher files regularly until this week. The app says its open in the task bar however no files will open and appear on the screen…can anyone help?

  21. Garth Stephens

    I run a PC with Publisher and simply save my files as PDF’s. My Mac-based clients can’t edit them but can annotate corrections for me to implement. Occasionally, they have used my pages as drafts and copied (can’t convert) them to Indesign or Quark for sophisticated kerning etc and for ease of repro/print output. (For long text-heavy documents, Publisher can also save as unformatted Word files, therefore usable on PC or MAC.)

    1. Yes that is the best option, but you can only do that from the PC side when you are saving it.
      If you are a mac user with a Publisher file you can’t do that. Thanks for the tip though!

  22. Not yet au fait with my first Mac so this was a tremendous help in converting Christmas cards sent in .pub format. Many thanks

  23. Chris

    Perfect result – thank you!

  24. John

    Thanks for these tips! It worked for opening a Publisher file. If it helps any other Mac users, there’s a good overview of alternatives to Publisher here:

  25. james

    Thank you so much! This was a lifesaver for my course work. Worked great.

  26. Blair

    Thanks so much, this worked great!

  27. sue

    Thank you so much!! It worked like a charm!

  28. Worked easily and almost instantly. THANKYOU.

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