Problem: You’re sent a Microsoft Publisher .pub file, and need to extract the pictures, for re-use in another publication or academic paper. But the pictures all have Publisher’s fancy border effects applied to them. How to remove these border effects from the pictures in Microsoft Publisher 2013?

Barriers: You right-click on the pictures, but there’s no “Remove all effects” option. You look under Insert | “Borders and Accents”, but there’s no way there to “Remove all effects”. For some reason, perhaps because the file is from an older version of Publisher, the text cannot be copied, pictures cannot be moved or changed, and the file can’t even be re-saved. The file did not become read-only in the transfer. You remember that you probably need to activate the Pictures tab in MS Publisher 2013, which is normally hidden, and only shows up in certain activity states. But you can’t get to that Pictures tab. Nor can you save out a portable assets pack from the .pub file.

Solution 1: Download and install the free Libre Office suite, a fork of Open Office. The Draw module in this opens Microsoft Publisher files. Open the .pub in Libre Office, and extract the pictures. Didn’t work for me — Libre couldn’t even open the file.

Solution 2: Save a .pdf from the .pub. Then use Adobe Acrobat (the full version, not the free Reader) and its Tools sidebar option to ‘Save all images…’ from the .pdf. That’s the images on the pages, not images of the pages. This worked for me, for all but those images that had a sort of ‘ice crystals’ or ‘grunge-dotted’ border applied to them by Publisher.

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