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Graphics Software Microsoft Operating Systems Windows

Paint.NET: The Anti-GIMP? 864 864

Arno contributes a link to Paint.NET, a free-of-charge raster-graphics program for Windows XP machines. "Quote: 'Paint.NET is image and photo manipulation software designed to be used on computers that run Windows XP. Paint.NET is jointly developed at Washington State University with additional help from Microsoft, and is meant to be a free replacement for the MS Paint software that comes with all Windows operating systems. The programming language used to create Paint.NET is C#, with GDI+ extensions.' It really seems like a nice tool. I definitely prefer its UI to GIMP's."
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Paint.NET: The Anti-GIMP?

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  • Mirror (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @12:52PM (#11159628)
    I managed to grab a mirror [dealsites.net] if needed. Site kinda seemed slow, especially for a .edu domain.
  • Server meltin (Score:2, Informative)

    by mOoZik (698544) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @12:54PM (#11159654) Homepage
    Can't even get the screenshots to load. While it may be an anti-gimp, it probably is also an anti-photoshop. However, the site is now not responding, so I can't check features and specifications. Did anyone manage to get a mirror set up?

  • good job /. (Score:5, Informative)

    by the right sock (160156) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @12:56PM (#11159682)

    dev, with mirror link: http://blogs.msdn.com/rickbrew/
  • Coral Cache file: (Score:5, Informative)

    by Neophytus (642863) * on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @12:57PM (#11159699)
    Much faster [nyud.net] than either of the mirrors listed.
  • by stephenb (18235) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @12:59PM (#11159719) Homepage
  • wow this is SLOW (Score:5, Informative)

    by hsmith (818216) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:01PM (#11159739)
    try drawing with the fat brush

    i am running a 3.0+ ghz and 2GB ram dell and the graphics painting sucks

    they may want to work on speed a bit if they want to be taken seriously
  • Windows XP Only? (Score:3, Informative)

    by eberry (84517) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:01PM (#11159742)
    ...designed to be used on computers that run Windows XP

    The author mentions twice that it runs only with Windows XP. It runs with Windows 2000, and presumably with any version of Windows that has the .NET Framework installed.

    Now I wonder, does it run with Mono?

  • Not Anti-gimp (Score:5, Informative)

    by tsetem (59788) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [metest]> on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:01PM (#11159745)
    I'd say, just like the article, it's intended to be a replacement for MS-Paint. It doesn't appear to have anywhere near all of the advanced features of Gimp.

    It has layers, and an effects API, but that seems to be where the similarity ends.

    The interface appears to be simple like MS Paint's, but I think it's seriously overstating that it's a Gimp competitor. Heck, sounds like the project has only been around for 2 semesters. How mature could it be compared to Gimp or Photoshop?
  • by TheAwfulTruth (325623) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:02PM (#11159760) Homepage
    1) Yes.
    2) No.
    3) It's open source.
    4) See #3 and because all /. headlines have to have inflamitory and misleading headlines to attract attention for some reason.
  • by wyldeone (785673) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:05PM (#11159793) Homepage Journal
    While it is meant (I would assume from the feature set) to be a replacement for Pain (and it does this admirably) it also has advanced photo editing tools, such as clone stamp, as well as some filters. So while at its present state the GIMP is better at image manipulation, the framework is there for more photo editing features.
  • Re:MONO? (Score:3, Informative)

    by cosinezero (833532) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:05PM (#11159810)
    ... why do you think .NET is around? Cross platform programming is one of the goals of .NET.
  • Re:.Net (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:06PM (#11159814)
    Because it was developed in .Net, that's why. You need the .Net environment to run it. You do know that .Net isn't some crazy scheme for keeping all your information in one spot, right? I remember circa 2001 when all the newbs here thought that.
  • Re:MONO? (Score:3, Informative)

    by arkanes (521690) <arkanes.gmail@com> on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:06PM (#11159819) Homepage
    GDI+ is the System.Drawing namespace, which is implemented in Mono. It may not be feature complete.
  • Re:BitTorrent! (Score:4, Informative)

    by whysanity (231556) * on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:06PM (#11159821) Homepage Journal
    torrents are fun [homedns.org]
  • Upside down layers (Score:3, Informative)

    by Digital_Quartz (75366) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:08PM (#11159834) Homepage
    Looking at their screenshots (can't run it from work, I'm on an aging Solaris workstation), it appears that the "layers" pannel lists the layers backwards. And when I say "backwards", I don't mean "opposite from Photoshop", I mean backwards.

    The whole point of layers is that you can stack them, so that you can see through a layer ON TOP to a layer ON THE BOTTOM. "On top" is generally synonymous with "above", not "below", and if you keep that mentality, you can view the layer window as a horizontal cross-section of your image.

    This is, perhaps, a minor quibble (this is not going to make or break it for me), but it just jumpped out at me as being strange. I can't think why anyone would reverse the layer ordering except to make their software look "not-Photoshop"ish.
  • by stratjakt (596332) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:08PM (#11159838) Journal
    Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:

    The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.

    Sure looks like a BSD-style license to me, it's just not GPL.
  • Re:wow this is SLOW (Score:4, Informative)

    by geekster (87252) * on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:08PM (#11159840) Homepage
    Yeah really. The requirements are 800 Mhz and 256 Mb ram. Which are exactly my specs.

    It was painfully slow. It stopped responding for about 5-10 seconds in the middle of a brush stroke and completely froze when i tried to exit throught the file menu.
  • by stupidfoo (836212) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:08PM (#11159841)
    Program also works on Windows 2000 with .NET 1.1 installed.
    First impressions: sure beats MS Paint :)
  • by Adhemar (679794) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:12PM (#11159902)
    Why should I install more badly designed MS software then I have too?

    You don't.

    First of all, the .NET framework is not badly designed. It's one of the best-designed products Microsoft ever came up with. The reason Microsoft released so much crap over the years, is probably because all their best programmers were working on .NET.

    Secondly, their exist free (as in free software) alternatives. Mono [mono-project.com] is the best-known one, an other is DotGNU [dotgnu.org] Portable.NET [dotgnu.org]. But they're not 100 % complete yet, so I don't know if this Paint.NET will work.

  • Re:Windows XP Only? (Score:4, Informative)

    by tagevm (152391) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:14PM (#11159916)
    The XP requirement is due to the use of GDI+, which is included with XP.

    However, GDI+ can be installed on NT4,W2K,Win98,ME see http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url= /library/en-us/gdicpp/GDIPlus/GDIPlus.asp

    As Linux doesn't have GDI+ I doubt very much that it will work with Mono.
  • Re:MONO? (Score:5, Informative)

    by AstroDrabb (534369) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:20PM (#11159991)
    On paper it is, but not in practice. First let me state that I like and use both Java and .Net daily. If MS intented .Net to be cross-platform, they would have made it so, just like Sun did with Java. Sun _made_ Java run on multiple platforms from the start and didn't do any features that favor Sun's platform. This is not the case with .Net. There are plenty of features that are MS Only on the GUI side. Also, did MS do any work toward cross-platform support? Nope.

    If MS wanted this to really be cross-platform, why didn't the do what Sun did with the GUI side and have it work on other platforms. The only thing MS did was give us the C# language (which is nice) and a reference C# complier. That is a far way off from being cross platform. What really matters are the class libraries. Sun made theirs cross-platform and implemented them on multiple platforms, MS did not. Sun did not tie anything into just Solaris, MS tied the GUI end of .Net into just MS Windows.

    If you write a .Net GUI app, it will not be cross-platform by default. You have to use some other class libraries like GTK#, QT# or wxWindows#. With Java, when you write a GUI app, it _is_ cross-platform.

  • Re:Mirror (Score:4, Informative)

    by Llama_STi (745859) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:21PM (#11160005) Homepage Journal
    This [wsu.edu] is the working mirror.

    You're welcome. ;)
  • Re:.Net (Score:3, Informative)

    by allometry (840925) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:25PM (#11160048)
    why does the name have .NET? I'm calling in Captain Obvious on this one...
  • Re:here here (Score:5, Informative)

    by benjcurry (754899) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:28PM (#11160076) Homepage
    Ummm...I use the GIMP every day. I'm a website developer and graphic designer. I like Photoshop better than the GIMP, but other than some less-than-perfect GUI issues, I love the GIMP as well.
  • by stratjakt (596332) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:30PM (#11160105) Journal
    This uses GDI+, so an environment like Wine would be more feasible than a port to mono et al.

    Unless I'm mistaken, I don't believe any of the OSS alternatives implement (or plan to implement) GDI+.
  • Re:Mirror (Score:1, Informative)

    by OsirisX11 (598587) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:31PM (#11160121)
    Thanks! Works much faster than the one in the article.

    I couldn't even pull up the article, thanks to The Slashdot Effect(TM)
  • Re:wow this is SLOW (Score:3, Informative)

    by I8TheWorm (645702) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:35PM (#11160166) Journal
    Strange. I just painted with a brush with a width of 100, and had no problems whatsoever. I'm on a 2.8GHz box with 512MB of DDR. All the while I'm running SQL Server 2000 and IIS as well.

  • Re:Mono. (Score:4, Informative)

    by Nachtfellen (67655) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:45PM (#11160296) Homepage
    I don't think there is anyone specifically working on this yet, but I'd like to see it.

    I downloaded Paint.NET a few days ago to see what it would take to convert it to run on GTK# with mono (much the same way the MonoDevelop guys ported SharpDevelop). The first issue I hit was that it seems to be tightly bound to Ink (the TabletPC SDK).
    Nonetheless, I plan to do some more experimenting with it over the next few days. If anyone else is working on this, I'd really like to hear from them.

    Joseph Hill (jhill AT arcfocus.com)
  • Does Rotor count? (Score:2, Informative)

    by tepples (727027) <tepples&gmail,com> on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:46PM (#11160307) Homepage Journal

    they just didn't actually implement it on multiple platforms, though they did release Rotor for BSD.

    Is Rotor available for commercial use? Does Rotor implement System.Windows.Forms? And what's this about examples compiled under one GUI platform will not run under other GUI platforms [microsoft.com]?

    What is the point of ISO standardization if you don't intend it to be cross platform?

    Are System.Windows.Forms and the parts of GDI+ added by System.Drawing part of the ISO spec?

  • Senior programmer? (Score:5, Informative)

    by melted (227442) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:53PM (#11160375) Homepage
    Have you heard of page sharing and copy-on-write? Most of these 80MB is shared between two instances of the app. At the same time fore each of the processes it looks like it has 80MB of code and data loaded. In reality both processes have the same thing, except for pages that differ. So code DLLs are mapped to the same areas of physical RAM and data segments are only in physically different locations if they've been written into.

    Yet windows task manager shows 80MB anyway, because that's what individual processes see.
  • Re:MONO? (Score:5, Informative)

    by AstroDrabb (534369) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @01:53PM (#11160385)
    they just didn't actually implement it on multiple platforms
    And that is the hardest part and the one that requires the most resources and time.

    Any group can make a new language and submit it for ISO standardization. Yes that would allow possible cross-platform implementations. But that is a far cry from actually being cross-platform.

    Sun made Java when they were the largest Unix server platform and one of the largest server platforms (MS doesn't have server monopoly). Sun could have made Java only run on Solaris and just submit specs for anyone else. They didn't do that. They _wrote_ the code for multiple platforms so that Java could be cross-platform.

    .Net will never be cross-platform until you can take a program using the native class libraries and have it run on other platforms. Thanks to Mono, you can do that with ASP.Net applications written in C# or VB.Net. But you cannot do that with .Net GUI applications.

    I just finished a C# GUI application (for personal use) that connects into Coast to Coast AM [coasttocoastam.com] with a StreamLink userName and Password and downloads the daily MP3's of the most recent show (or any date you pick). This app doesn't run on Linux or any other platform. If I had written it in Java, it would run out-of-the-box on those other platforms, that is cross-platform.

  • by stupidfoo (836212) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @02:08PM (#11160534)
    Yes it was. No, you're not confusing it, Microsoft confused you (and most everyone) with their, seemingly arbitrary, .NET naming scheme.

    The .NET framework != the passport login scheme (although you can use the passport login scheme with the .NET framework).
  • Re:Here it comes. (Score:5, Informative)

    by John Hansen (652843) <.crayz9001. .at. .foobar.homelinux.net.> on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @02:17PM (#11160630) Homepage
    I don't understand this permanent woody for boxes in boxes, the non-Photoshop world abandonded that GUI a decade ago.

    Even Photoshop never used that clunky interface originally. The Photoshop MDI originated from the fact that on the Macintosh, Photoshop looked a lot more like the GIMP -- except that the menubar was on top, mac-related stuff, etc. However, the Photoshop programming team didn't want to figure out how to do that on Windows, so they simply made a "container window" to hold everything.

    Since then, a number of programs have emulated that, even though they never had to. It was simply a hack to get around a Mac-->Windows porting problem.

  • by jsebrech (525647) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @02:31PM (#11160818)
    That Gimp's interface sucks is one of the few reasons I still need to open Win4Lin from time to time: To run Paint Shop Pro. PSP 4.3 used to run under Wine but it no longer ran on the version that came with RH9 so I have to run Win4Lin to get PSP to work.

    You can run photoshop under codeweavers' crossover office. It's not perfect, but it works.

    I'm sure Gimp has lots of nice features but the interface is a joke. And to those that tell me that I should just learn the interface, no thanks. All my other Linux applications make sense and have an interface that is easy to sit down and use. Gimp is a major exception even within the Linux application area.

    I agree. I've tried and tried to learn gimp's "way of working", and despite getting things done, I still don't care much for it. It has all the functionality I need, but the UI is unfriendly. It has some good things compared to photoshop, like not being MDI, and good improvements have come, like filter improvements to match those of photoshop and doing away with the tool window madness (tons of windows, all the time) of earlier versions, but there's still a number of major irritations left in the UI and the supporting documentation.

    My two wishes for the gimp would be:

    - A guide that explains what gimp functionality corresponds to what photoshop functionality. It's gotten easier to find over the years, and the filters have been padded out so there's more of a one to one correspondancy, but as a gimp newbie it's often still not immediately obvious how to do things, and reading the entire manual to learn the equivalents is a no-go.

    - Grouping functionality together more. For example, there are a whole range of selection tools in the toolbox, rectangular select, round select, freeform select, and so on. Why do they need to be different buttons, and why are common selections settings, like anti-aliasing and feathering, duplicated in the tool settings panel of these tools? It clutters and complicates the interface without providing any actual benefit, and seems to only be there to make sure the existing (relatively small) gimp userbase can keep the interface they've gotten used to, at the cost of diminishing migration from photoshop users to gimp (it makes a bad first impression to see a toolbox that cluttered).

    Oh, and while I'm at it, will someone explain the point behind allowing different canvas and layer sizes? I don't get it. And it just gets in my way.

    Let me repeat: gimp does everything I need it to, and has a for a long time. And yet I still use photoshop. If the interface was just a bit more simplified, and it was just a bit more obvious to migrate from photoshop, I'd be there. But as it stands...

  • by erroneus (253617) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @02:44PM (#11160944) Homepage
    Okay I just loaded it up and I have the following to say about it:

    (BTW, Thanks to whoever it was that supplied the link to the MSI. Very handy considering the death the original site suffered.)

    1. It requires .NET. Why? I don't have a clue.
    2. It can only handle one document at a time, though I can load multiple instances. It doesn't QUITE make up for it... probably eats up gobs more memory than it should as a result though.
    3. It is GOD-AWFUL slow. My machine is 2GHz with 512MB... not a hot-rod but no slouch neither.
    4. There is no ability to drag a layer from one project to another. That's a pretty critical thing when you are importing several images to create a single image.
    5. The UI is nice enough... I'm kinda torn between that and the GIMP UI. But since it's the functionality I care more about than the UI, I lean to The GIMP since it clearly has more and performs FAR better.

    I could probably add more but I won't. This program is NOT (yet) a threat to The GIMP. And since The GIMP is cross-platform, there is no contest in my mind. Cross-platform, however, doesn't mean anything to those who will be using only Windows for the next 3-4 years. (And for that reason, the UI style is best for Windows-only users since they are likely to adapt to it more quickly than that of The GIMP.)

    I think if they could address the problems I listed above, they'd start to have a contender on their hands. I don't like that it's needlessly not cross-platform -- I think someone mentioned something about the Mono project or whatever the Linux .NET comparable thing is... Can it be ported? Again--Why is it necessary?

    Which would I recommend to users? The GIMP without hesitation ... at least for now. I like Paint.NET's simplicity but speed and memory consumption is unusable and it's hard to explain that to users... and the WinXP only thing is the kicker. I know lots of people still running Win98 and even though The GIMP isn't all that great for Win98, it still kinda runs anyway. (I think it'd be nice if someone out there were to build in a compile option to support Win98 and share the binaries... there's a need!)

  • by Kenshin (43036) <[kenshin] [at] [lunarworks.ca]> on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @03:03PM (#11161154) Homepage
    I was playing around with this, and wondered what the hell you guys were talking about.

    The fat brush worked just fine for me.

    Then I turned off the "translucent windows" option... and the program slowed right the hell down.

    So, it's one of those odd programs that runs FASTER with the effects TURNED-ON.
  • Mirror for download (Score:2, Informative)

    by DangerTenor (104151) <pmhesse2@@@geminisecurity...com> on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @03:07PM (#11161189) Homepage
    Rick Brew has posted a copy of the installer on his blog. Download it from http://blogs.msdn.com/rickbrew/ [msdn.com].
  • Lasso select ... (Score:3, Informative)

    by tjwhaynes (114792) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @03:21PM (#11161335)

    Speaking of nice features: the lasso-select in this thing is pretty kick ass. Does any other software have similar real time highlighting of the selected area for the lasso?

    What you mean, like the GIMP? Press "F" or click the third button in the tool pane and you are using lasso select.

    I'm beginning to think that there are a bunch of people out there who just like to spout off without engaging their brain. The GIMP has a ton of great features, the dockable toolbars work fabulously, it has great support for the Wacom Intuous tablet I use and it does pretty much everything I need it to do. Plus plugins like Resynthesizer make removing spots and creating tilable textures from digital photos really easy. Criticise the tools you use, not the ones where you just visited the web page.


    Toby Haynes

  • Re:here here (Score:3, Informative)

    by cascadefx (174894) * <morlockhq@gma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @03:30PM (#11161429) Journal
    That's BS FUD and you know it.

    I use GIMP all the time on Windows and Linux. Now that the Windows version 2.2 with GTK 2.4 supports my Wacom Intuous 2 pad, I'll use it even more.

    I use GIMP for image manipulation and for painting and it is a great piece of software. Without it, I would have to spend hundreds of dollars on Photoshop, something that I can't afford.

  • Re:Here it comes. (Score:4, Informative)

    by stupidfoo (836212) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @04:07PM (#11161816)
    It highlights the area that is being lasso'd. Think of the crop tool (where it greys out the area to be cropped), but in reverse. This gives the selected area a light blue color while you're drawing with the lasso. It's very nice.
  • by SloppyElvis (450156) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @05:05PM (#11162356)
    I'd have to say that Paint.Net is pretty nice. It has an intuitive interface, and support for the most-used functions in a general picture editor.

    Performance was not a problem on my PC. Some have reported it is on theirs. I am running a P4 3.2 GHz HT w/512 MB RAM. :)

    Now to the constructive criticism...
    1. Tooltips came up under the tools in the toolbox. So, I couldn't see them, and I had to go to the help file to find out what some of the non-standard tools did.
    2. Transparent windows are cute enough, but flicker annoyingly when you drag a selection beneath them.
    3. Better fill options would be nice (like a gradient fill perhaps - I know GDI+ contains support for this).
    4. Huge memory management problems. After playing with an image for about 5 minutes, my Task Manager reported 160 MB memory in use for PaintDotNet. This figure seemingly rose with every operation, and almost never went down. Further, at one point, pencil and brush drawing stopped functioning entirely.

    The memory problem is a big one. I'm guessing that the history list is largely responsible for the offense, and that some disk cacheing could remedy the problems. Garbage collection isn't a license to grab all the RAM on my PC.

    Anyway, a good free program all-in-all. A bit of a heavyweight to be a Paint replacement though.
  • Re:Interesting (Score:3, Informative)

    by martinoforum (841942) on Wednesday December 22, 2004 @05:41PM (#11162712)
    If they genuinely want FOSS to succeed as a mass-market movement, the slashdotters who keep pulling this line out of their posteriors will need to shut up. Not everybody who wants to use The GIMP is going to be a programmer, or a bored geek with the time free to do such things. For things like the GIMP to succeed, they need to attract graphics professionals - the majority of whom don't care in the slightest about the source code or programming. It's a stupid response, and I wish people would stop saying this every time that somebody has an issue with an open source package. It's called "User feedback", it comes from having "Users" who "Use" your software to "Do things". These strange people don't just sit around their bedrooms and scratch themselves all day, interspersed with the occasional porn download. They have jobs. They get paid to do work. They may go to their boss and say "Look, we can save $xyz by using this excellent free package instead of paying up for package ABC". They will not go to their boss and say "Look, there's this free package I like... can I spent a couple of months hacking it to make it usable for our needs?". Programmers do that. Creative professionals don't.

Klein bottle for rent -- inquire within.