GIMP Sucks - Anything Better For Free?

I have become thoroughly convinced that the people who designed GIMP did so with the intention of frustrating as many people as possible. I hate that program with a passion. Even doing something like moving a layer requires you to set the radio button to “move the active layer” because the default is to move anything other than the currently selected layer. I won’t even get started on those annoying floating windows like the toolbox.

You know those funny motivational posters? They have a picture in the middle with a border around it and a funny caption underneath. I’m trying to make one of those and it is a frustrating experience in GIMP. There is no easy way to do it other than to draw a line around the image with a round brush because there are no square ones. You can’t select the image, grow the selection, then fill a border because that creates a border with rounded–not square–corners.

I used to use Adobe Photoshop 6 which I got from a tech guy at the company I worked for years ago. It was very easy to use. GIMP has a long way to go until it approaches the usability of Adobe 10 years ago.

So I’m looking for some suggestions regarding free alternatives to GIMP. Preferably something that doesn’t make you hunt around for the toolbox every time you switch to another image and doesn’t consume 90 MB of RAM when you have only three images open.

Suggestions are appreciated. :slight_smile:

I won’t even get started on those annoying floating windows like the toolbox.

I thought they’re working on improving the whole interface.

Have a look at - haven’t actually used it myself but looks more like Adobe PS than Gimp.

Thanks for the tip, c2uk. I will check it out. :slight_smile:

and do come back and report, I’d be interested in what you’ve got to say about it.

This post should do you well, it has a whole range of alternatives (including those mentioned):


OK, I downloaded Paint.NET and tried it out for about an hour. Thanks for the tip about the program and thanks to the others for the links.

I was looking for something (relatively) lightweight with a reasonable amount of features to do minor image manipulations and make humorous motivational posters and stuff. Paint.NET works perfectly for that.

Having three images open in GIMP consumed over 90 MB of RAM. Having 5 images open in Paint.NET takes 51.5 MB of memory. I am using an old computer with only 256 MB of RAM. I was worried because the system requirements for Paint.NET calls for 512 MB of memory. But it operates fast on my old computer. GIMP took about a minute to open with all the loading of extensions or whatever it did. Paint.NET loaded within a few seconds. The tool dialogs are within the main program window–not floating everywhere like in GIMP–and are translucent. This is a nice feature as it allows you to see what is behind them in situations where you are zoomed into a picture and need to move the select box behind the tools or layers windows.

It does have a few idiosyncrasies, however. The biggest that I found in my limited time using the program is that Paint.NET required the image to be flattened prior to saving in JPEG format. That means in your project file all of your visible layers are going to be flattened. You no longer have individual layers. After you save the JPEG, you have to manually undo the flattening to get the individual layers back in your project. I don’t know why they designed the program like this. For exporting to JPEG, GIMP creates another separate file. I wish Paint.NET would have either done that or flattened it in RAM so as not to alter the original project file.

My first impressions are that it is fast, lightweight, full of many features that you will find in GIMP, and unlike GIMP, very intuitive to use. I made a couple motivational posters tonight and the only time I had to search for help was when using the text tool. Text isn’t saved as a separate layer as in GIMP. Text is considered pixels and after you are done using the Text tool you can no longer alter the text on the image. You have to scrap it and make new text if you need to make a change. That’s another little idiosyncrasy.

I’ll use it some more in the coming days and post more of my impressions about it. No program is perfect, especially for no cost. But this one seems pretty good.

I use Illustrator but my customers sometimes need to re-size the files quickly. I did some research and found that the free online service called Sumo Paint does a nice job. It is also a graphic editor. It you want to make vector graphics online using a free app you may want to try [URL=“”]Raven by Aviary.

Hey cheesedude,

I think photoshop cs5 is very good but its too costly,
I’ll prefer pixlr editor because its a browser based and very easy and it also supports .psd files.

check it out - :slight_smile: -

Actually, that’s one of my bigger problems with GIMP. But I do find the program good overall. Maybe you just need some getting used to it.