IrfanView Tutorial


IrfanView has many options for photo editing and it's completely free!  Open IrfanView or open IrfanView Thumbnails.  The thumbnails provides you with a folder and file listing making it easy to locate photos and graphics on your computer.

IrfanView 3.97 from the Start Menu


Once you open IrfanView, you will notice that the screen looks like an old DOS screen with a basic top file bar and a black canvas.  The screen of IrfanView can confuse you when your first open it because there's so little to view in comparison to the typical free programs provided with digital cameras and scanners.


IrfanView thumbnail view gives you the directory tree so you can locate your photo and image files easily.  Right clicking on an image will give you a menu of options.


File Size

You will want your files to be less than 500 pixels if you are trying to use them on a web page.  All photos and graphics must be a small file size in order to load up properly on the web.  An ideal size might be 300x200 pixels depending on the detail in the photo.

Large file - 1818X1220 Pixels

Medium File - OK for web but slow to load up - 500x338

Small File - Great for web, but not good for detail - 206x208

Typically, cameras will use a file type that is not compatible with the web.  Some cameras typically use bitmap - .bmp, tiff or pcx or the MAC .pict, etc. For the web, you need the file to be either jpeg (.jpg) or gif (.gif).  When the web first began to use graphical interfaces, the early programmers selected jpeg from the MAC Adobe Photoshop format and gif from Windows Compuserve image file extension.  Use "save as" and locate the jpg and gif extensions.



You can also view your images in Windows.  Note that Windows will provide you with "details" about the file.  This window will tell you what the file extension is, the file size, and the dimensions of the graphic.  Note that the first image (no shown) is very large both in file size and in dimensions.  That large size is typical of a high resolution digital camera photo.  Once you've cropped and changed the file size, you'll notice that the image is much smaller.  This image happens to already be a .gif, so it can simply be resized for the web.  However, many images have different types of extensions - .bmp, .pcx, .tiff, etc.  In order to use your photo on the web, you must convert the file to a .gif or .jpg (.jpg). 


    File Menu - Open File

In IrfanView, you can see the file size at the bottom of the page along with a preview of your image.  You will note that this file size is VERY large.  You generally will open all common graphic files - but note the many different graphic file extensions possible.  You can open as one file extension and then save as a .gif or .jpg in order to make the image viewable for the web.


Image Menu



View the Image Properties under the "Image" menu on the top file bar.  Select "information" to view the file details.


Change the image size by selecting "Resize/Resample" from the Image menu on the top file bar.


Notice the change in image properties after resizing the image.


Edit Menu

Use mouse to select crop and then click on "crop selection."


Note that IrfanView gives you file size information on the bottom bar.

Save as either .jpg or .gif.

Save File as either .gif or .jpg.  You can select the quality of jpeg, but generally you can use the default jpg save setting.


Options Menu


Under the Options menu on the top file bar, you can get the properties of your image in greater detail.


Other Options in IrfanView

Batch Files

Batch Files - You can select a group of files and change the extensions all at once.  You can choose to save your renamed files in another folder so you can keep your originals.



Choose Enhance Color from the Image Menu


Adding Text to a Photo


Selecting Font

IrfanView has an effects menu that allows you to add a number of paint editing options for artistic creativity - oil paint, emboss, etc.


Effects Browser

One of the nicest features of IrfanView is the screen capture utility.  Go to the options menu on the top file bar and select capture/screenshot.  You can use the hot key setup as is, or create your own.  You can select whole screen or a specific window.  Click on start and you can capture screenshots.  Then crop and save your image as a .jpg or .gif.  This is a great way to create tutorials.  You can also use the print screen key on your computer keyboard, but using a screen capture will give you a cleaner image.