Free, fast and simple image viewer and editor – this is what IrfanView is and what makes it one of the best and most widely used image applications out there. It has been around for years and each successive version continues to extend the program’s functionality, while keeping it compact and speedy; the latest release supports close to 60 image file formats, including BMP, JPEG, GIF, ICO, JLS and WBZ/WBC/WB1, offers region capture, command line options, batch renaming and resizing, thumbnail options, color profiles, file search, drag and drop, and has Multilanguage support; if you need even more features more than 50 plug-ins can be downloaded from the author’s website separately or in a single ZIP or EXE file.


The installation file is 1.3MB and the installation wizard will guide you through the process – all you have to do is select the files that you wish to be associated with IrfanView; the image editor is bundled with three Google applications – if you don’t want them installed, simply deselect that option.

Ease of use

The interface is simple and easy to use; keep in mind that IrfanView is a viewer rather than editor – it offers a few basic image editing options such as rotating, vertical and horizontal flipping, resizing, increasing/decreasing color depth, sharpening and some image effects, however, where the strength of IrfanView lies is the number of file formats that it supports, its ability to index images inside directories with great speed, display thumbnails, sort images by date, batch rename, resize and even print images. The help file is very detailed and well-written and should answer all your questions; IrfanView supports shortcuts, various plug-ins that allow you to extend its functionality and burn images to disk, play media files, read files with Unicode, send images as emails, read BodyPaint 3D files, create slideshows and more. The application is extremely compact and lightweight and uses minimal system resources.

IrfanView is free for personal use and works on Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7

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