3.4. Using External Programs

GIMP uses plugins for reading and writing all file formats except XCF. These plugins may use external libraries or programs. For example, GIMP does not directly support PostScript. Instead, for reading (or writing) PostScript files (file extension .ps or .eps), GIMP requires a powerful free software program called Ghostscript.

3.4.1. Installing Ghostscript

Linux distributions almost always come with Ghostscript already installed (not necessarily the most recent version). For other operating systems, you may have to install it yourself. Here are instructions for installing it on Windows:

  • Go to the Ghostscript project page on Sourceforge [GHOSTSCRIPT].

  • Look for the package gnu-gs or ghostscript (for non-commercial use only) and go to the download section.

  • Download one of the prepared Windows distributions, such as gs650w32.exe or gs700w32.exe.

  • Start the executable and follow the instructions for the installation procedure.

  • Set the GS_PROG environment variable to the full file name of the gswin32c binary (e.g. C:\gs\gsX.YY\bin\gswin32c.exe).

Now you should be able to read PostScript files with GIMP. Please note that you must not move the Ghostscript directories once the installation is complete. The installation creates registry entries which allow Ghostscript to find its libraries. (These instructions courtesy of http://www.kirchgessner.net.)