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
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
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
or flattening it (see Section