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Home and Office: Cropping and resizing images with IrfanView.

I used it with Windows 98 and I still use it with Windows 10: IrfanView is not only a nice picture viewer, but also allows basic image editing, converting and saving images in lots of formats and (with plugins installed) viewing so to say any information that is included with picture files (such as for example the EXIF data of photos). The following text shows, how IrfanView may be used to crop a given part of an photo and save an enlarged image of the cut-out.

Open the image in IrfanView and choose Edit > Create custom crop selection....

IrfanView: Create custom crop selection

The "custom crop selection" window opens. I never made any settings here, just pushed the "Save and draw on image" button. This will result in a small region in the top-left part of the image being selected for cropping (no importance, what's selected this way; you may very easily modify it just as you want in the next step)

IrfanView: The 'Create custom crop selection' window

The part of the picture, that will be cropped, is a rectangle delimited by thin grey lines (at begin, at the top-left part of the image), that you may move (the left and right lines leftwards or rightwards; the top and bottom lines upwards or downwards) to any position within the image, thus selecting exactly the region you want. To move a line, move the mouse over it, until its shape changes to a double-sided arrow. Push the left mouse button and let it pushed while you move the mouse: the line will move accordingly. When you have reached the position you wanted, release the mouse button. When the 4 lines delimit the area, you want to cut out, choose Edit > Crop selection (cut out).... Really easy! The only thing to pay attention at, is not to click into the image unless cropping is finished; otherwise the crop selection, you made, is lost and you have to restart.

IrfanView: Cutting out the crop selection

We now have cut out the part of the image as we wanted; now lets enlarge it. To do so, choose Image > Resize/Resample.

IrfanView: Resizing an image

The "Resize/Resample image" window opens. There are several possibilities to resize the picture and several other settings to affect the result. The most common way to proceed, is to check the "Set new size" radio bautton and to choose a given size for the width (or the height); with Preserve aspect ratio checked, the second dimension will be set automatically. An alternate way is to check "Set new size as percentage of original"; in this example, I entered 200%, thus creating an image twice the size of the original.

If you want to create a picture with given width and given height, you can uncheck the "Preserve aspect ratio" option and enter a custom value for both dimensions. The image is resampled and if the new ratio is a "reasonable" proportion of the original one, the new image will be ok, i.e. without being to much distorted.

IrfanView: The 'Image Resizing/Resampling' window

To save the new image with a different name (or at a different location, choose File > Save as.... This opens two windows:

IrfanView: Saving the modified image

You haven't installed IrfanView on your Computer? Just download it (it's entirely free) and give it a try: I'm sure you'll like it!.