How to add Editing and Viewing of RAW images in GIMP 2.8

Few of us have started to get into photography and have started to look at RAW images. You have to have a program to let you work with them as well. Most will use Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom and others, but being a Linux guy there is always GIMP. In this post we will discuss how to add RAW capability to GIMP and open the RAW image.

DSLR cameras bring us RAW images which are big and uncompressed images in which we can make our own changes to the images. By default GIMP does not know how to handles the images so we turn to UFRaw ( project for the needed support.

Assuming GIMP is installed then we search using yum search we see the needed packages.

$ sudo yum search ufraw
Loaded plugins: langpacks, presto, refresh-packagekit
updates/pkgtags | 333 B 00:00
=============== N/S Matched: ufraw ==========================================
ufraw-common.x86_64 : Common files needed by UFRaw
ufraw.x86_64 : Raw image data retrieval tool for digital cameras
ufraw-cinepaint.x86_64 : CinePaint plugin to retrieve raw image data from digital cameras
ufraw-gimp.x86_64 : GIMP plugin to retrieve raw image data from digital cameras

From this we see we need to install ufraw and the ufraw-gimp plugin.

$ sudo yum -y install ufraw ufraw-gimp

And that’s all that is needed to add RAW image support to GIMP! GIMP will open UFRaw plugin when you select the image and show a preview of the image. Once selecting ok it will now be imported into GIMP for further manipulation.

After making changes you can use GIMP’s export feature to save the images in the format of your choice.

7 Responses to “How to add Editing and Viewing of RAW images in GIMP 2.8”

  1. Bruce Wallman says:

    I installed Gimp 2.8. Is there a way for it to read Sony a6000 Raw image files?

    • newlife007 says:

      If you are running any Linux distribution and have installed the ufraw-gimp package it should open the file in Gimp. According to UFRAW site the Sony SR2 and ARW formats are supported. You also could look at installing Darktable which is a great RAW photo application.

      • Bruce Wallman says:

        Sorry, I should have said that I am running Windows XP SP3. Not Linux or any 64 bit system.

        • newlife007 says:

          No problem, you can download UfRaw from download the exe file and install it. Once it is done just open Gimp and do a File > open.

          • Bruce Wallman says:

            Ufraw is opening the Sony ARW files, but GIMP 2 is not seeing them. I am unable to do an open from GIMP 2. I installed GIMP 2 by default in \program files\GIMP\… and tried installing Ufraw in a few different locations after the default did not work with GIMP. GIMP is not seeing any RAW formats, including Sony.

          • newlife007 says:

            I did a bit of digging and found the author of the UFraw program states the Gimp UFraw plugin does not work on Windows, you have to use the standalone UFraw and make the edits in the program and export to a format Gimp supports. The plugin works on Mac and Linux only in Gimp. I tried to get it to work on Windows but it corrupts the DDL’s and Gimp itself.

          • Bruce Wallman says:

            Thank you very much for checking.

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