Embedded Indexing Resources

Document preparation/publishing software with embedded indexing features:
Third-party add-on utilities providing expanded indexing functionality for many of these packages are listed in the Software tools for facilitating embedded indexing section on this page.

  • FrameMaker (Adobe) – excels in text-based page layout/design. Used to write and publish long technical documents such as instructions or manuals. Current versions are subscription based only.
  • InDesign (Adobe)– is widely used for large-scale print and digital media projects, handling graphics and sophisticated formatting styles. Current versions are subscription based only.
  • LaTeX – is a document preparation system for high-quality typesetting that includes features designed for the production of mostly technical and scientific documentation. It is available as a free software license.
  • Word (Microsoft) – is a widely used word processing program and text editor. Most recent versions are available for purchase only as part of the Office suite of products.

Software tools for facilitating embedded indexing:

  • DEXembed – Microsoft Word add-in to embed indexes, created in CINDEX, SKY Index, or MACREX into Word or DocBook XML.
  • DEXter – Microsoft Word add-in to embed indexes directly in Word documents.
  • InDesignConverter – Saves Word documents as InDesign tag files, also allowing the import of Word index entries into InDesign.
  • IndeXExploit – add-in for Microsoft Word users wanting to use embedded index entries to find information fast, and for professional indexers and others wanting to create and debug embedded indexes.
  • Index-Manager – Dedicated indexing software which creates embedded index entries in Word, InDesign, or XML files.
  • IXGen – Indexing and marker management productivity tool for FrameMaker.
  • IXMLembedder – Embeds index entries created in CINDEX and certain versions of SKY Index into Word documents, InDesign documents, and tagged XML files. (currently unavailable)
  • Kerntiff Publishing Systems IndexUtilities – A collection of scripts and plugins that help embed index markers in InDesign.
  • TExtract – semi-automated indexing software, which includes a Word embedding option.
  • WordEmbed  – Converts an index created in CINDEX, SKY Index, or Macrex into a Word embedded index.

Compatibility observations:

Linked and embedded indexes don’t always work as planned. This section documents issues observed and makes suggestions for improvement. Each entry is dated and contains a short description and a summary of recommendations.

  • Hyperlinks Report (2023) (WIP). Hyperlinks to PDF pages and bookmarks work differently depending on hardware and software used. This affects usability of large indexes to bulletins and journals. This survey shows some of the differences. A set of requirements is proposed which will remove the differences in behaviour and better support not only linked indexes, but general users needing to access content within PDFs. Cooperation is sought from indexers, authors, publishers and software developers to make the changes happen. The survey will be repeated in March 2024.

Online workshops:

Webinar replay:


Web resources:

Discussion group:

Published resources below are listed in chronological order, the most recent first.



Book chapters:

  • “Embedded indexing: Learning the Smart Ways to Index in Adobe FrameMaker and Microsoft Word,” Lucie Haskins, in: Janet Perlman and Enid L Zafran (eds.) Index It Right! Advice from the Experts, volume 2, American Society for Indexing, 2010, pp. 111–34.
  • “Embedded Indexing Software,” Glenda Browne and Jon Jermey, The Indexing Companion, Port Melbourne, Victoria: Cambridge University Press, 2007, pp. 183–186.
  • “Indexing in Microsoft Word,” in Max McMaster and Sue Woolley, Indexing for Technical Communicators, Melbourne: Monarch Computing Services, 2004, pp. 103–112.
  • “Embedded Indexing,” Peg Mauer, in Sandi Schroeder  (ed.) Software for Indexing, American Society of Indexers, 2003, pp. 83–98. [Word and FrameMaker]
  • “The Trials and Tribulations of Embedded Indexing with Word,” Joanne Clendenen, in Sandi Schroeder (ed.) Software for Indexing, American Society of Indexers, 2003, pp. 83–98.
  • “Indexing with PageMaker,” Jan C. Wright, in Sandi Schroeder (ed.) Software for Indexing, American Society of Indexers, 2003, pp. 83–98.
  • “The World of Embedded Indexing,” Jan C Wright, in Diane Brenner  and Marilyn Rowland (eds.) Beyond Book Indexing: How to get Started in Web Indexing, Embedded Indexing, and Other Computer-Based Media, American Society of Indexers, 2001, pp. 3–12.