1.5.3 Release

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The Scribus Team is proud to announce the release of development release 1.5.3, another major step on the way to Scribus 1.6.0.

In addition to being a milestone in terms of typographic features, the Scribus Team is convinced that version 1.5.3 finally justifies considering the transition from existing workflows based on 1.4.x to 1.5.3+ in a similar way to the transition from 1.3.3.x to 1.4.0 after the release of version 1.3.6.

Scribus 1.5.3 is very stable and unlikely to crash. Some newly introduced features, like footnotes, may not function as desired, at least not yet, but overall, 1.5.3 is working almost flawlessly and also much better and faster than 1.4.x. In other words: Everything that works reliably in 1.4.x also works in 1.5.3, but it's more stable, faster and more versatile. On top of that, it includes additional and already overwhelmingly stable features galore.

Most Important Changes

  • The most important change isn't immediately visible, namely a completely rewritten text layout engine, which supports complex scripts like Arabic, Hindi or Thai, as well as providing access to advanced OpenType features, such as ligatures and alternate glyphs.
  • Altogether, about 500 languages and/or scripts are supported. Please note that as of version 1.5.3, Scribus is supposed to render these diverse writing systems, which still needs thorough testing by those who are familiar with them.
  • Typing on the canvas and text rendering in general has become a lot faster.
  • Previews for fonts are now available in font selectors.
  • The "Text" tab has been removed from the Properties Palette and is now a separate UI palette.
  • The performance of copying and pasting objects in/from/to files with huge color palettes has been vastly improved.
  • An import filter for Krita's KRA format has been added.
  • Scribus now follows the XDG standard for configuration files. Therefore, the Scribus preferences directory has moved from ~/.scribus/ to a new default location: ~/.config/scribus/
  • Color selectors display the color values as a tooltip.
  • A longstanding problem with the launch option for an external image editing program has been resolved. Until version 1.5.3 it was necessary to manually close the external program before it could be started again from within Scribus. This is no longer necessary.
  • The "Wikipedia RAL Classic" color palette has been updated, this time using Wikipedia's LAB color values.
  • A script called "Caption" has been added, which adds a text frame to an image frame, based on the latter's proportions.
  • The "Autoquote" scripts now supports inverted guillemets via the "de-g" parameter.
  • Code improvements have been made based on recommendations from using both the Coverity scan tool and the "clazy" tool (https://github.com/KDE/clazy). These changes improved efficiency, removed bugs and improved security.

New Dependencies

  • As of version 1.5.3, the minimum Qt version to compile the program is 5.5.
  • harfbuzz and libicu, as well as the related development packages are now required.


  • Vertical writing systems aren't supported for the time being, but support will be added in a later release.
  • The Online Help hasn't been updated, yet.

Special Credits

  • This version builds significantly on the code from 1.5.2 with the work that the Oman House of Open Source Technology team, led by Khaled Hosny, delivered.
  • 1.5.3 uses all of the remainder of the code, and we have Fahad Al-Saidi to thank for his continued work and especially for the bug triaging and code changes.
  • Andreas Vox introduced a layout cache to speed up text rendering.
  • William Bader has fixed the issue of launching several instances of an external image editing program.
  • Contributions to GUI translations via participants on the Transifex translation platform

Primary Download Locations

Download Verification

Description File Name Sha256sum Sha1sum
Source scribus-1.5.3.tar.xz
Source scribus-
OS X 10.9/Mavericks or higher, Intel x64 scribus-1.5.3.dmg
Windows 32/64 Bit scribus-1.5.3-windows.exe
Windows 64 Bit scribus-1.5.3-windows-x64.exe
Linux 64 bit AppImage [1] scribus-1.5.3-linux-x86_64.AppImage

Expectations for Scribus 1.5.4

  • An entire rebuild of the palette system used in Scribus, enabling a cleaner and more flexible GUI
  • Updates to depdendencies, with a likely increase to Qt 5.6
  • Migration of build systems to later versions of operating systems:
    • On Mac OS X, we will only build packages for 10.10 or 10.11 or higher.
    • On Windows, those who compile Scribus themselves need to move from MSVC 2012 to a later version.


The Scribus Team would like to thank Anduin.net and Modirum for their continued hosting of all of the Scribus websites.

We are grateful to the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie and Linux New Media (Germany) for sponsoring.

The Scribus Team is also honored to have Resene Colours (New Zealand), dtp studio Oldenburg (Germany), Scientific Illustration Services Corp. (USA), the Newspaper Association of America (USA), Software Consulting Services (USA), freieFarbe e.V. (Germany), bauwerk Kommunikationsdesign (Germany) as Special Supporters and donors of color palettes and other content since the 1.4.x release, just like we are grateful to the owner of Vector Portal for the permission to distribute some of his work as Scribus Templates.

Porting Scribus to OS/2 and eComStation is being supported by Serenity Systems (USA).

Finally, the Scribus Team would like to thank the many end users, translators, testers and contributors who helped us with this release.

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