Batch Edit Your Images with GIMP

files2   Batch Edit Your Images with GIMP For my MakeUseOf articles I’m constantly resizing images so that they will fit into our page template.¬†As a result, I go through a lot of repetitive actions with GIMP, the free image editing program.¬† After a quick Google search, I found a powerful tool to help me save a ton of time by batch image resizing.

GIMP doesn’t have a built-in batch editing feature because one of the ideas behind the software is that users will create their own scripts and add-ons to enhance it as they need it. This can be a bit frustrating for newer users because they cannot readily code their own features and they must hunt down the things they need online. This add-on is definitely worth the inconvenience and you’ll probably use it for some time to come.

First of all, batch images editing is the process of applying identical alterations to a large number of images.  In this example I will be talking about creating multiple sizes of multiple images and renaming them for categorization. There are many other things you can do with batch editing though.  For instance you can:

  • Turn
  • Rotate
  • Color
  • Crop
  • Sharpen
  • Rename
  • Resize

The first step in any batch edit is downloading and installing the required add-on (if you’ve never done it before).¬†Head on over to the home page for David’s Batch Processor (DBP).¬†If you are a Linux user, the instructions are listed fairly clearly on the “Where Do I Get It?” section of the page.¬†If you’re a Windows user, download the zip archive in that same section and unzip them to somewhere easily accessible (the desktop is fine).

plug ins   Batch Edit Your Images with GIMP

Unzip that file (simply called “dbp”) and place it in the folder at this location on your computer “C:\Program Files\GIMP-2.0\lib\gimp\2.0\plug-ins.” This is the default location of course, you may have named the program folder something other than “GIMP-2.0″ if you made modifications to the installer.

Once you have the plug-in installed, you can open GIMP right up and start playing around with it.¬† The menu is located conveniently in the Xtns part of the menu under “Batch process…”.¬† From there you will be brought up to a tabbed menu that shows you all of your options.

menudropdown   Batch Edit Your Images with GIMP

The first of these options is the “Input” tab, which will allow you to add images to your batch.¬†Be careful with this one, as the “add files” pop-up covers up the tabbed interface and does not actually indicate that it is adding the files when you select them.¬† You’ll have to look at the input tab again to confirm that your files were added (just one of the eccentricities of homemade software).

Next, you’ll want to indicate how you wish to resize the image.¬†Click the “Resize” tab and select “Enable.”¬† If you want to maintain the ratio of height to width, select “Relative” (the most common).¬† If you want to make exact changes to the height and width, which will distort pictures but may be good for editing objects that are of a uniform pattern, select “Absolute.”

I’m going to scale them using the Relative setting and bring them down by 65 percent.¬†As you can see above, the scale starts out at 1.00 (representing 100 percent size) and moves up and down by decimal points. You could click “Start” now, but you want to do one more thing.

Tab over to the “Rename” pane and look at your options.¬† First of all, you can choose where the files come from and where they end up. The default is “same as source.¬†Personally, I like to add on a modifier to each file’s name so that I end up with the size clearly labeled on each version of an image.¬† As you can see, I’ve put a postfix of “_65″ into the form so it will append that to the new filenames.¬† It even provides a sample.

rename   Batch Edit Your Images with GIMP

Now you can hit “Start” and generate all the files you’ve set up.¬†I ran this for two different sizes and got three sizes in total for my trouble: Original, 75%, and 65% (see image at the top of the page).¬† Now if I were to write an article I’d have different sized images for whatever my page layout required.¬† It should be noted that if you want your final files to match the file type of your originals, you’ll need to use the “Output” tab to choose the file type.

This is an incredibly handy tool for any blogger, especially if you do software or game reviews and have to play around with bulky screenshots from time to time.¬†Definitely put in the small amount of effort it takes to install this plug-in and you’ll realize it’s worth its weight in digital gold.

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12 Comments -

Rick

Nice…I’ve been trying to figure out how to do this in GIMP, but didn’t realize it required a plug-in. Looking forward to putting this one to good use.

Bruce M

Why not use IrfanView? It is free and comes with batch processing.

Jimmy Rogers

Good point Bruce! Personally I use both (as you can tell from my file associations in image one), but I tend to use IrFanView as a image viewer (even though it can do more) and for editing of any kind I tend to fire up GIMP. Personally I feel it is a more powerful rendering engine and feel more comfortable with the quality I’m going to get out of the program. Just a personal preference. Also, if you needed to do something more complex in batch, or with images that you batch edit, it’s handy to have the functionality already there on GIMP.

Oh and Rick, glad we could help you out!

jetterz

HUGE lifesaver. thanks!

rakesh juyal

Tht’s what i was looking for. Thnx

Andy Williams

I’d strongly recommend FastStone Photo Resizer. It has batch operations for a whole bunch of things, not just image resizing, and you can do several batch operations all at one go e.g. resize, rotate, rename, and whatever else. It’s really easy to use. In fact I recommend ALL FastStone apps, most of which are free (www.faststone.org)

smaller

I love you for this.

DannyR

To help anyone else avoid the same problem I had. In GIMP 2.6, the Xtns menu has been removed. The Batch Process menu item that this extension creates can now be found under the Filter menu.

Dina

I can’t find it in the Filter menu, and I don’t have Xtns menu either, I tried searching all over the program but it’s just not there :(

SavingMRS

I have NEVER been ale to get this to work. I have a mac. However, I’ve been told its suppose to work. Meh.