Simple image software – Irfan view

In this series of articles I will let you know the software that I find useful to get my work done (and to have some fun)

Irfan View to manage and resize images

irfanview is a great image viewerIrfan view is a great program for viewing all sorts of images and it also lets you do bulk changes to images (like resizing all of your images to work better on your web page).

It does not edit your images but it is fantastic for viewing large number of them on your hard drive (through the thumbnail viewer)

On my computer I store a library of all of the images I have downloaded for posts and any I have been given by clients. I keep them at full size so that I can use them for all sorts of things but if I use them like that on my web page then it would take up space and bandwidth. The last thing you want is a web site that is slow and clunky because the files are too big when they don’t need to be.

I use Irfan View to create a smaller ‘web friendly’ version of all the files at 300px in size. This gives a good size for the web that I can easily shrink a little more if I want to but don’t have to re-size on disk. For example the normal size image file I download from Stock.XCHNG is between 1 and 4 MB and is a beautiful big image. For the web this is too big and the big picture is just shrunk down for display in any case. Your user has to download the whole thing for no benefit. A 3,500px file might take up 4.5MB but when resized to 300 px it is only 19K. That’s 4500K down to 19K which is 236 times smaller!

Bulk/Batch conversion of images

Many image programs will let you do this one image at a time but Irfan View has a simple ‘batch conversion’ mode and I simply run it when ever I add images to may main library. The next directory down is called 300×300 and this is populated by a web friendly copy of all of my images.

If you download the plug-in pack then you can also use Irfan View to watch video, listen to audio files and read a PDF. This is great if you want a simple tool to have a quick look at all the different files you have in a directory.

Here’s to fun with images and web pages that load quickly and look good,

Brian
your ‘Peoples Geek’