Quark will release a set of powerful XTension tools for its flagship DTP package QuarkXPress in April, the company said today.

Quark XPert Tools Pro for QuarkXPress 7 will be posted on the Quark website on the week beginning 2 April as a free download for all XPress 7 users.

The tool collection is already in use by Quark's customers and was formerly developed and sold by A Lowly Apprentice Production (ALAP), which Quark acquired in 2005. ALAP sold the collection under the name XPert Tools Pro.

"This suite of tools directly answers customers' needs and enables simply better design," said Terry Welty, Quark senior vice president of corporate marketing. "There's tremendous value in these XTensions, especially when they're combined with the powerful features in QuarkXPress 7. Making them available at no charge is our way of saying thanks to XPress 7 customers."

XPert Tools Pro will help designers use features such as XPert FindChange that allows them to transform not just text but entire documents in seconds. XPert ItemStyles will enable users to quickly create attractive pages while keeping design consistent, and the XPert Pilot feature lets users go beyond tiny thumbnails to see large, graphically rich overviews of their projects.

Other popular XTensions modules in Quark XPert Tools Pro include:

- XPert Guides: Create and edit on-screen guides with precise control
- XPert Scale: Scale multiple objects and their contents in a layout quickly and easily
- XPert BoxTools: Ease the process of adjusting the size and placement of items, text, and graphics
- XPert ImageInfo: Access information about pictures and the capabilities for modifying pictures placed in layouts
- XPert PageSets: Save frequently used settings in the New Project dialog box as a style
- XPert Toolbars: Create custom palettes for quick access to any QuarkXPress function
- XPert TextLink: Provides an intuitive palette for linking and unlinking text boxes and text paths
- XPert Print: Print or export pages or spreads as EPS files
- XPert Type: Access and apply common text-formatting options quickly and easily.

To learn more about QuarkXPress 7 or to download a fully functional 30-day evaluation version, visit the Quark website.