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I'm looking for a free tool to convert EPS (encapsulated postscript) to SVG (scalable vector graphics).

I am aware that I can convert EPS to PDF with Ghostscript, then import the PDF with Inkscape and save the result as SVG. However, I want a simpler workflow with less tools, basically I want a single button "convert it".

I need that for Windows and offline use. I cannot upload my EPS to an online service.

  • On Linux, my first look would be the ImageMagick tools. Not sure whether they are available for Windows, but I guess so. With them, conversion would be as easy as e.g. mogrify -format svg *.eps. Though I have to admit I've never tried these two specific formats (but usually convert between more common ones, like gif/png/jpg). – Izzy Feb 23 '17 at 15:58
  • @Izzy: what you suggested converts the EPS into a bitmap and then the bitmap into a SVG file. The original lossless vector content gets lost. Sorry. – Thomas Weller Jan 30 '18 at 13:17
  • Never noticed that for the "small things" I had to solve that way – but thanks for pointing out, didn't know! – Izzy Jan 30 '18 at 18:07
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I think Scribus - an Open Source Desktop Publishing software - should be able to do it. Open an EPS, let it save the converted file into its native format, and export as SVG.

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Inkscape (free) vector graphics editor imports .EPS directly, asks a couple questions which I answer with default, and saves directly to SVG as well as other formats.

The program runs on Windows, Mac and Linux and continues to improve in performance and features.

Update (per request)

Using File, Open, as well as locating a file via Windows file manager, right clicking and selecting Open With (Inkscape) I was able to open five or six .EPS files from random locations on my system.

The image below is the dialog box presented after selecting the file.

pdf import settings

Some of the .EPS files I have were created using a bitmap to vector conversion program. I can allow for suspect circumstances with 3rd party processes, but one would expect such programs to follow conventions regarding exporting graphics.

As shown below, the imported file behaves as a vector file, allowing one to select elements of the image as desired.

butterfly eps file

In order to eliminate the possibility that the tested EPS files were of my creation, some of the images I tested originated from folder structures that indicate they were bundled with other software. I found one that I recognize to be from a local web developer. She would likely have used Adobe Illustrator to create or convert the document to EPS, based on the information I have attached to that folder.

I believe that my answer is correct from the experiences I've listed. If my answer was voted down because your configuration failed to import/open, it does not mean my answer is incorrect and deserves a down vote.

  • As already mentioned in the question, I have Inkscape. I think I'm up to date with version 0.92. It's not possible to import EPS files. I have tried drag'n'drop as well as File/Import and File/Open. I tried with 7 different EPS files. If it is possible, then explain in detail how you got this working. – Thomas Weller Jan 30 '18 at 13:08
  • Answer has been edited to reflect working sequence. – fred_dot_u Jan 30 '18 at 16:04
  • A downvote means "was not useful" (and that's exactly what it was for me) - not that it's incorrect. I'll review your steps and check whether I can open EPS that way. Thanks for following up. I see that you care about quality answers. – Thomas Weller Jan 30 '18 at 17:28
  • I have the same issue with InkScape latest from today (0.92, 64-bit). The EPS is not even listed in the file open dialog. Maybe you have an extension to inkscape or installed another software that extends inkscape in some way... – Simon Mourier Jan 11 at 17:36
  • Scribus asked for ghostscript to be able to open EPS, maybe InkScape requires it too (I've not tested) – Simon Mourier Jan 11 at 17:43
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Probably all the main distributions of TeX (such as MikTeX and TeXLive) include a command-line tool called dvisvgm. By default it converts from TeX DVI files, but it can also convert EPS files by specifying the --eps option. Other options include --no-fonts to convert all text to vector graphics form, preserving the appearance of the text without embedding the fonts, but of course at the expense of having the "real" text in the SVG.

AFAIK there's no easy batch conversion scheme - working in Windows, I tend to create a batch file and use keyboard macros in my favorite editor to set up all the commands.

The reason I'm looking now is because I've had problems converting EPS files generated by ye ancient Acrobat Pro 7 (part of Adobe CS2), in turn created by InDesign CS2. But that's the first problem I remember having, and some other software has problems with these EPS files too - even Adobe Illustrator CS2 doesn't get the page bounds right, LibreOffice 5 can't use the files though LibreOffice 6 can etc.

That obscure issue and the batching issue aside, this is an excellent tool for anyone willing to use the command line.

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Just install Ghostscript: https://www.ghostscript.com/download/gsdnld.html And add C:\Program Files\gs\gs9.26\lib (on Windows) to system path and now Inkscape will be able to open EPS file format.

UPD: after this you can convert eps to svg even commandline

inkscape -z 683523.eps -l out.svg

What can be simpler?

  • I explicitly mentioned that I have already tried this, and it works, and I want a simpler solution. Sorry. – Thomas Weller Feb 5 at 8:10
  • I mean you not need "convert to PDF " step - with way descrbed by me Inkscape will load EPS file directly. So this way is much simpler. – Fedir Tsapana Feb 5 at 8:56
  • Ok, I see. I'll try that – Thomas Weller Feb 5 at 9:58
  • Also mention to add exactly C:\Program Files\gs\gs9.26\lib path to system path - not C:\Program Files\gs\gs9.26\bin or something else. Thats was my mistake some time ago. – Fedir Tsapana Feb 5 at 12:29

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