Using xverbs

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"xverbs" is an extension that is useful for some batching tasks. It is available in Inkscape trunk, and will be available in the stable 0.93 release.

libyaml development libraries (e.g. libyaml-dev package on Ubuntu) are required to activate the option when compiling.

Inkscape has a set of action "verbs", which is bounded to the menu system. One of the interesting uses of "verbs" is the --verb command line option. But the length of command line is limited and "verbs" can be applied for only one .svg file or for an empty new document.

"xverbs" aims to overcome the limit of MAX_PATH (with libyaml) and add some useful "xverbs" with arguments. For example "xverb-id: XFileOpen, some.svg" allows you to open an existing document and "xverb-id: XFileSaveAs, other.svg" to save it with specified name.


inkscape --xverbs=xverbs.yaml

Format of xverbs.yaml:

# only "verbose: yes" enable logging
verbose: yes

  # open document to process
  - xverb-id: XFileOpen, gfx_sources/loading_screen/sandclock_atlas.svg

  # set label for XUndoToLabel "xverb" works
  # NB: if undo labels do not work, use "verb" EditUndo instead of XUndoLabel and XUndoToLabel
  - xverb-id: XUndoLabel, fresh_document

  # select element to handle
  - xverb-id: XSelectElement, top_sand

  # common "verbs"
  - verb-id: EditInvertInAllLayers
  - verb-id: EditDelete
  - verb-id: FitCanvasToDrawing

  # save element to separate svg document
  - xverb-id: XFileSaveAs, output/thegame/linux/data/gfx/loading_screen/top_sand.svg

  # also save png preview
  - xverb-id: XFileExportPNG, output/thegame/linux/data/gfx_preview/loading_screen/top_sand.png

  # return to the fresh_state of document
  - xverb-id: XUndoToLabel, fresh_document

  # do any other handling
  # Inkscape has a lot of useful "verbs"
  - verb-id: FileQuit

List of verbs

"verbs" are developed for the Inkscape menu system, so "verbs" do not have any arguments. A list of available Inkscape "verbs" can be found in the source code:

List of xverbs

XFileSaveAs - save current document to specified filename
XFileOpen - open specified .svg filename instead of current document
XFileExportPNG - export to specified .png filename
XSelectElement - select svg element by name
XUndoLabel - set undo label
XUndoToLabel - undo to specified label

Additional info

Some additional info can be found in this mailing list thread: