Introduction to GIMP

The GIMP package contains the GNU Image Manipulation Program. This is useful for photo retouching, image composition and image authoring.

Package Information

Additional Downloads

Help System

GIMP Dependencies


GTK+-2.8.20, libart_lgpl-2.3.17, and XML::Parser-2.34




If the recommended dependencies are not installed, the configure switches below will need to be modified as explained in the section called “Command Explanations” below.


libmng-1.0.9, librsvg-2.14.4, AAlib-1.4rc5, little cms-1.15, libexif-0.6.13, libgtkhtml-2.11.0 (required to build the help system browser plugin), libxslt-1.1.17, PyGTK (requires Python-2.4.4), GTK-Doc-1.6, an MTA (that provides a sendmail program), ALSA-1.0.13, and libwmf

Optional (for Building Documentation from the Help Tarball)

libxslt-1.1.17, DocBook XML DTD-4.4, DocBook XSL Stylesheets-1.69.1, and ImageMagick-6.2.8-0 (only needed to optimize PNG images)

User Notes:

Installation of GIMP

Install GIMP by running the following commands:

./configure --prefix=/usr \
            --sysconfdir=/etc \
            --datadir=/usr/share &&

To test the results, issue: make check.

Now, as the root user:

make install &&
install -v -m755 -d /usr/share/doc/gimp-2.2.12 &&
install -v -m644 docs/{Wilber*,keybindings.txt,} \

The gimp-help tarball contains a help system designed for use with external web browsers, the internal GIMP help browser, and HTML renderers. The tarball only contains the XML sources, so you will need the xsltproc program from libxslt-1.1.17 to build the HTML files.

If you downloaded the gimp-help tarball, change directories out of the GIMP source tree to the root of your build directory. Now unpack the gimp-help tarball and change directories to the root of the newly created source tree (as an unprivileged user). Issue the following commands to install the help files:

./configure &&

In order to use the --enable-convert parameter to the configure script, you must have the convert program from ImageMagick-6.2.8-0 installed.

Now, as the root user:

make install

Command Explanations

--datadir=/usr/share: This parameter is required because there is a subtle bug in Autoconf-2.59 which causes the configure script to mishandle the datarootdir variable. Fortunately, passing --datadir= works around the problem.

--disable-print: This option will disable print support and is necessary if Gimp-Print is not installed.

--without-libjpeg: This option is necessary if libjpeg is not installed.

--without-libtiff: This option is necessary if libtiff is not installed.

--enable-gtk-doc: Use this parameter if GTK-Doc is installed and you wish to rebuild the API documentation.

Configuring GIMP

Config Files

/etc/gimp/2.0/* and ~/.gimp-2.0/gimprc

Configuration Information

GIMP executes a configuration wizard for each user upon their initial use of the program.

GIMP executes the mozilla web browser by default to view the help files. If you do not have Mozilla, or prefer a different web browser, you can set a new system value in /etc/gimp/2.0/gimprc. Execute the following command as the root user, replacing <browser> with your preferred web browser:

echo '(web-browser "<browser> %s")' >> /etc/gimp/2.0/gimprc


Installed Programs: gimp, gimp-2.2, gimp-remote, gimp-remote-2.2, and gimptool-2.0
Installed Libraries:,,,,,,,, and many other modules and plugin libraries
Installed Directories: /etc/gimp, /usr/include/gimp-2.0, /usr/lib/gimp, /usr/share/doc/gimp-2.2.12, /usr/share/gimp and /usr/share/gtk-doc/html/libgimp{,base,color,math,module,thumb,widgets}

Short Descriptions


is a symbolic link to gimp-2.2.


is an image manipulation program. It works with a variety of image formats and provides a large selection of tools.


is a symbolic link to gimp-remote-2.2.


is a small utility that tells a running GIMP to open a local or remote image file.


is a tool that can build plug-ins or scripts and install them if they are distributed in one source file. gimptool-2.0 can also be used by programs that need to know what libraries and include-paths GIMP was compiled with.

provides C bindings for GIMP's Procedural Database (PDB) which offers an interface to core functions and to functionality provided by plug-ins.

provides the C functions for basic GIMP functionality such as determining enumeration data types, gettext translation, determining GIMP's version number and capabilities, handling data files and accessing the environment.

provides the C functions relating to RGB, HSV and CMYK colors as well as converting colors between different color models and performing adaptive supersampling on an area.

contains C functions which provide mathematical definitions and macros, manipulate 3x3 transformation matrices, set up and manipulate vectors and the MD5 message-digest algorithm.

provides the C functions which implements module loading using GModule and keeps a list of GimpModule's found in a given searchpath.

provides the C functions for handling GIMP's thumbnail objects.

contains the GIMP common user interface functions.

contains GIMP and GTK widget creation and manipulation functions.

Last updated on 2006-07-24 19:32:31 -0500