IrfanView: Saving ICO with transparency

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Terry Pinnell, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. Not something I do very often but needed a custom .ICO file just now so
    made one in IrfanView. A 32x32 JPG, red letters on a blue background,
    saved as an ICO file:
    https://dl.dropbox.com/u/4019461/TP2-32x32-Both-RedOnBlue.ico

    Then decided I'd prefer a transparent background, i.e. just the red
    letters. So I used the Options dialog in IrfanView:
    https://dl.dropbox.com/u/4019461/IrfanView-ICO-1.jpg
    and in the resultant window clicked in the blue. Call that option #1, and
    all worked as expected, giving me the transparent icon I needed.

    But I'm unsure how the other 3 options would be used? What is the 'main
    window colour'? IOW, how do you set up the transparency colour in each of
    the other 3 cases:

    #2. Both checkmarked
    #3. Neither
    #4. 'Use main window...' checkmark greyed.

    --
    Terry, East Grinstead, UK
     
    Terry Pinnell, Mar 8, 2013
    #1
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  2. Terry Pinnell

    Mayayana Guest

    I think it's just a case of function overkill. It used to
    have only a checkbox to save transparency. The main
    window color checkbox seems to be an option to select
    the background color without needing to go through the
    click-on-the-image step to select the transparent color.
    It doesn't really make much sense, though, because
    icons sometimes don't have an unambiguous "background"
    color.

    So, check "Save Transparency" to get a transparent
    color. Check the "main window color" checkbox if you think
    it's exhausting to have to click in the window to choose
    a transparent color, and you don't mind risking that IrfanView
    will pick the wrong color. If you don't check it, IrfanView will
    present the window where you can click on the color you want
    transparent. Try it out. It'll be obvious once you do it.


    | But I'm unsure how the other 3 options would be used? What is the 'main
    | window colour'? IOW, how do you set up the transparency colour in each of
    | the other 3 cases:
    |
    | #2. Both checkmarked
    | #3. Neither
    | #4. 'Use main window...' checkmark greyed.
    |
    | --
    | Terry, East Grinstead, UK
     
    Mayayana, Mar 8, 2013
    #2
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  3. Thanks. But I had tried that "main window color" checkbox and there was no
    transparency in the result.

    --
    Terry, East Grinstead, UK

    "Mayayana" <> wrote:

    > I think it's just a case of function overkill. It used to
    >have only a checkbox to save transparency. The main
    >window color checkbox seems to be an option to select
    >the background color without needing to go through the
    >click-on-the-image step to select the transparent color.
    >It doesn't really make much sense, though, because
    >icons sometimes don't have an unambiguous "background"
    >color.
    >
    > So, check "Save Transparency" to get a transparent
    >color. Check the "main window color" checkbox if you think
    >it's exhausting to have to click in the window to choose
    >a transparent color, and you don't mind risking that IrfanView
    >will pick the wrong color. If you don't check it, IrfanView will
    >present the window where you can click on the color you want
    >transparent. Try it out. It'll be obvious once you do it.
    >
    >
    >| But I'm unsure how the other 3 options would be used? What is the 'main
    >| window colour'? IOW, how do you set up the transparency colour in each of
    >| the other 3 cases:
    >|
    >| #2. Both checkmarked
    >| #3. Neither
    >| #4. 'Use main window...' checkmark greyed.
    >|
    >| --
    >| Terry, East Grinstead, UK
    >
     
    Terry Pinnell, Mar 8, 2013
    #3
  4. Terry Pinnell

    Mayayana Guest

    --
    "Terry Pinnell" <> wrote in message
    news:eek:...
    | Thanks. But I had tried that "main window color" checkbox and there was no
    | transparency in the result.
    |

    I see you're right. That's weird. From the help:

    "If you activate the option Use main window color for transparency, the
    current window color (Properties->Viewing) will be automatically set as
    transparent color."

    I made the error of assuming the function made sense and
    that therefore the checkbox text must be worded badly. But
    it actually means what it says. It sets the IV window background
    color as the transparent color! I tried it and it works. In my
    case I set the IV background gray, to match my default window
    frame color. I can't imagine what Mr. Skildjan was thinking.
     
    Mayayana, Mar 8, 2013
    #4
  5. Thanks for the follow-up, Mayayana.

    Yes, unless i hear to the contrary I think that option is unlikely to be
    useful! I'll ask Irfan about it.

    --
    Terry, East Grinstead, UK
     
    Terry Pinnell, Mar 9, 2013
    #5
  6. Terry Pinnell

    Me Guest

    On 8/03/2013 9:20 p.m., Terry Pinnell wrote:
    > Not something I do very often but needed a custom .ICO file just now so
    > made one in IrfanView. A 32x32 JPG, red letters on a blue background,
    > saved as an ICO file:
    > https://dl.dropbox.com/u/4019461/TP2-32x32-Both-RedOnBlue.ico
    >
    > Then decided I'd prefer a transparent background, i.e. just the red
    > letters. So I used the Options dialog in IrfanView:
    > https://dl.dropbox.com/u/4019461/IrfanView-ICO-1.jpg
    > and in the resultant window clicked in the blue. Call that option #1, and
    > all worked as expected, giving me the transparent icon I needed.
    >
    > But I'm unsure how the other 3 options would be used? What is the 'main
    > window colour'? IOW, how do you set up the transparency colour in each of
    > the other 3 cases:
    >
    > #2. Both checkmarked
    > #3. Neither
    > #4. 'Use main window...' checkmark greyed.
    >

    Not sure if this helps, but with Gimp, you can quickly create a 32 bit
    icon with transparency ie:
    File | new...
    select 32 x 32 px
    select advanced options | fill with Transparency
    - create your icon
    Export file - use *.ico extension on file name
    save dialog comes up with options to modify palette, bit depth
    (including 1 or 8 bit alpha transparency)
    The "look" of icons using 8 bit alpha transparency seem to have been the
    norm for about the last decade.
     
    Me, Mar 9, 2013
    #6
  7. Me <> wrote:

    >On 8/03/2013 9:20 p.m., Terry Pinnell wrote:
    >> Not something I do very often but needed a custom .ICO file just now so
    >> made one in IrfanView. A 32x32 JPG, red letters on a blue background,
    >> saved as an ICO file:
    >> https://dl.dropbox.com/u/4019461/TP2-32x32-Both-RedOnBlue.ico
    >>
    >> Then decided I'd prefer a transparent background, i.e. just the red
    >> letters. So I used the Options dialog in IrfanView:
    >> https://dl.dropbox.com/u/4019461/IrfanView-ICO-1.jpg
    >> and in the resultant window clicked in the blue. Call that option #1, and
    >> all worked as expected, giving me the transparent icon I needed.
    >>
    >> But I'm unsure how the other 3 options would be used? What is the 'main
    >> window colour'? IOW, how do you set up the transparency colour in each of
    >> the other 3 cases:
    >>
    >> #2. Both checkmarked
    >> #3. Neither
    >> #4. 'Use main window...' checkmark greyed.
    >>

    >Not sure if this helps, but with Gimp, you can quickly create a 32 bit
    >icon with transparency ie:
    >File | new...
    >select 32 x 32 px
    >select advanced options | fill with Transparency
    >- create your icon
    >Export file - use *.ico extension on file name
    >save dialog comes up with options to modify palette, bit depth
    >(including 1 or 8 bit alpha transparency)
    >The "look" of icons using 8 bit alpha transparency seem to have been the
    >norm for about the last decade.
    >


    Thanks. I did install Gimp a few years ago but found learning it rather
    heavy going. I use a combination of PaintShop Pro 8 and IrfanView, with
    the occasional use of FastStone Image Viewer.

    --
    Terry, East Grinstead, UK
     
    Terry Pinnell, Mar 9, 2013
    #7
  8. Terry Pinnell <> wrote:

    >Thanks for the follow-up, Mayayana.
    >
    >Yes, unless i hear to the contrary I think that option is unlikely to be
    >useful! I'll ask Irfan about it.



    Here's his helpful reply:

    --- Start paste ---
    Main window color: start IrfanView without the image and see the window
    color.

    ==> "Use main window color" option makes sense only IF the loaded
    image was already transparent, so you can use the same color again
    .... without an extra click.

    If you have a JPG image, which is never transparent, uncheck that
    option, so you will see a preview window and you have to click and
    choose the new transparent color.
    --- End paste ---

    --
    Terry, East Grinstead, UK
     
    Terry Pinnell, Mar 10, 2013
    #8
  9. Terry Pinnell

    Mayayana Guest

    | >Yes, unless i hear to the contrary I think that option is unlikely to be
    | >useful! I'll ask Irfan about it.
    |

    I seem to be missing at least 2 posts in this thread. I don't
    know why.

    Talking about "window color" is confusing, but it also applies,
    in my tests. If I use an image with transparency and resave
    as another image then checking that box will save the same
    transparent color. If I save a solid image then it actually does
    set the transparent color to be whatever the IV window color
    is, which makes no sense. And how often would a transparent
    image be resaved? If I edit the image I won't be doing that in
    IV. So the option would only apply when saving a GIF to ICO,
    GIF to PNG, PNG to GIF, etc. I don't think I've ever done any
    of those operations. ... I'm guessing that that pointless and
    confusing extra option in v. 4.35, which was not present in
    v. 4.33, will disappear in a later release. :)

    |
    | Here's his helpful reply:
    |
    | --- Start paste ---
    | Main window color: start IrfanView without the image and see the window
    | color.
    |
    | ==> "Use main window color" option makes sense only IF the loaded
    | image was already transparent, so you can use the same color again
    | ... without an extra click.
    |
    | If you have a JPG image, which is never transparent, uncheck that
    | option, so you will see a preview window and you have to click and
    | choose the new transparent color.
    | --- End paste ---
    |
    | --
    | Terry, East Grinstead, UK
     
    Mayayana, Mar 10, 2013
    #9
  10. On Sun, 10 Mar 2013 11:14:38 -0400, Mayayana wrote:

    [Transparency to main window color]
    > how often would a transparent image be resaved? If I edit the image I
    > won't be doing that in IV. So the option would only apply when saving a
    > GIF to ICO, GIF to PNG, PNG to GIF, etc. I don't think I've ever done any
    > of those operations. ... I'm guessing that that pointless and confusing
    > extra option in v. 4.35, which was not present in v. 4.33, will disappear
    > in a later release. :)


    That *you* don't do such things doesn't mean, /nobody/ does. Editing
    existing icons to create new ones can perfectly be done in IrfanView
    with Paint plugin, for instance. And when creating a whole bunch of
    them, the removed tedious extra-step to select the transparent color
    on saving is welcome.

    BeAr
    --
    ===========================================================================
    = What do you mean with: "Perfection is always an illusion"? =
    ===============================================================--(Oops!)===
     
    B. R. 'BeAr' Ederson, Mar 10, 2013
    #10
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