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Grokking The Gimp
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1.10 Common Problems and
Frequently Asked Questions

Sometimes the GIMP displays what seems like inexplicable behavior. This is usually not a bug but a misunderstanding on how to properly use the GIMP. For this reason, Chapters  1 through 5 each have a final section which addresses common problems. These are presented in the format of a FAQ (frequently asked questions); here they are for this chapter:

  • I've opened an image in the GIMP and I want to run some plug-in filters on it, but hardly any are available. They all seem to be grayed out. What's wrong with my GIMP?

    Nothing is wrong. You've probably loaded an indexed image (for example, a GIF format file), and most GIMP plug-ins   don't work with indexed images. The solution is to convert your image to RGB format with the RGB function found in the Image:Image/Mode menu.

  • After hours of exhausting work during which I built an image with multiple layers, masks, and paths, I saved my image to a file. However, the next time I opened my image, much of what I did on the image was missing. What happened? 

    The GIMP XCF format  should be used to save images with layers, masks, or paths (see Section  1.2). This is the only format that can save the state of your GIMP image projects. Once a project has been completed you may want to save it in another format such as JPEG, GIF, PNG, etc. For this you will need to convert the image after merging it (see Sections  2.7.1) or flattening it (see Section  2.7.2).

Grokking The Gimp
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  Published under the terms of the Open Publication License Design by Interspire