macOS app to view and export Procreate documents

801bf5d Update README, no more distribution on the App Store

10 months ago

76d5a49 Update copyright years

1 year, 3 months ago

#Silica Viewer

This is a macOS app to view Procreate documents, and it also contains QuickLook and thumbnail extensions to allow you to quickly preview your files as well!


I created this app because I frequently store backups of my Procreate documents on my computer, but you can't actually preview them! And if you're like me, your files have nonsense or unusable names like "Untitled" or "Untitled 1", which makes file management harder.


I stopped distributing the application on the App Store but there's nothing stopping you from compiling it on your Mac!


Installing this app is simple, just open it at least once to register the QuickLook and thumbnail extensions to Finder. Although it's still experimental, you can view Procreate files in-app.

For user's interested, this app registers the com.procreate UTI into your system. This is registered for all .procreate files (they are detected via file extension).


Swift Package Manager is used to handle our only Swift dependency, ZipFoundation. This is automatically fetched when you open the project in XCode.

MiniLZO is used to decode image data but has already been included in the repository for convenience.

#Reverse Engineering Notes

When looking at .procreate files, it's important to note that they are actually standard ZIP files. If you want to take a quick look at the file contents, simply extract them. Here's a sample directory listing:

- (Layer folders named by their UUID)
  - Contains .chunk files, the raster canvas data for the document.
- QuickLook
  - Thumbnail.png - Low-quality screenshot generated by Procreate.
- video
  - segments
    - segment-X.mp4, where X is a number starting from 1.
- Document.archive - NSKeyedArchive containing layer information along with other document information like canvas size.

#Raster Canvas Data

Reading back the actual raster information is extremely easy, most of this work as already been pioneered by jarmovogel's Procreate Viewer and simply adapted to Swift. In short, each of the .chunk files is compressed via LZO. When uncompressed, it is just raw rgba data.


When the document is modified in Procreate, they generate a PNG thumbnail automatically. This is located in the QuickLook/Thumbnail.png. This is used by Procreate's own thumbnail extension on iOS/iPadOS. Even though it's a thumbnail image, is actually pretty decent quality. This is also used by this app's QuickLook and Thumbnail extensions.

#Timelapse Video

Procreate, just like with thumbnails and image data - continue to use standard formats for storing data. This is no exception for timelapse video, which is simply a series of mp4's starting at segment-1.mp4. As far as I know, you can't glean the number of segments required for a full video ahead of time, so you must resort to listing the segments in the video/segments folder beforehand.

#Document Data

Layer names, time spent and other data is located in Document.archive. This is the only hard-to-read file in Procreate documents, but it is a NSKeyedArchive. Here, we just use the PropertyListSerialization object to decode this in Swift.