Changes from the book to the final 2.6 release

Beginning GIMP, 2nd edition was written based on 2.4 and the 2.5 development releases.

In cases where the 2.6 interface differs from 2.4, I tried to describe both side by side, as well as offering a summary of the changes in Appendix D.

Here are a few changes that didn't make the book in time. (See the 2.6 Release Notes for other details.)

If you're using the first edition and want the changes between it and GIMP 2.4, look at this older page: New for GIMP 2.4.

TAB to make auxiliary windows appear and disappear
Many users, especially on Windows, have been having trouble with the new window management settings. If you have trouble with the toolbox refusing to hide under image windows, or it or docks getting in your way, you have two options:
  1. Preferences, Window Management tab: in Window Manager Hints set both hints to Normal Window, or experiment with the various settings and see what works best for you.
  2. Press the TAB key in any GIMP window to make the Toolbox and dockable dialogs (everything except image windows) hide; another TAB in an image window brings back all the other windows. This is the mode recommended by the GIMP developers, and many people find it solves the problem of windows blocking other windows.
TAB isn't new in 2.6, but it has become a lot more necessary with the window management changes in 2.6.
Where to find dialogs
With the restructuring of the menus, it's a bit harder to find your dockable dialogs. They're under the Windows->Dockable dialogs menu now.
What about those dialogs that used to be in Xtns?
The Python console, the Script-fu console and Refresh Scripts are under Filters->Python-fu and Filters->Script-fu. However, the Procedure (PDB) and Plug-in browsers have moved to the Help menu.
What's up with that blank space where the menus used to be?
It's intended as a drag-and-drop area (drag images to it from your browser or your file browser), but you can drop over the Toolbox buttons too, or over any image window (the file will open as a layer in that image window), so you don't need the blank Toolbox space. If you'd rather not have it, find your GIMP profile (see Chapter 12, or look in Preferences under Folders) and edit the file named gimprc and add this line:
(toolbox-wilber no)
The Use GEGL checkbox has disappeared from the Toolbox tool options, but there's a Use GEGL item in the Colors menu. GEGL is the new backend for GIMP which eventually will handle most of GIMP's operations. Currently it's somewhat experimental, but if you're interested in testing it, you might want this option enabled.