Hacking:Plugins

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GIMP supports plug-ins.

Some plug-ins are distributed with GIMP and some are distributed by third parties.


Plug-ins and the GIMP Procedural DataBase (PDB)

Plug-ins must register themselves in the PDB. Other GIMP functions, called internal procedures, are also in the PDB.

Programming Languages for GIMP Plug-ins

GIMP plug-ins are written in the C, Scheme, Python, or Perl programming languages.

C language GIMP plug-ins are compiled and linked with Gimp libraries. They can access functions in those libraries or functions in the PDB. They are distributed as executable files with suffix ".exe".

Scheme language GIMP plug-ins are interpreted. They can access procedures in the GIMP Procedural Database (PDB.) They are distributed as text files called scripts with suffix ".scm".

Python language GIMP plug-ins are interpreted. They can access procedures in the GIMP Procedural Database (PDB) as well as functions provided by the PyGimp set of Python modules (chiefly, the module named "gimpfu".) They are distributed as text files with suffix ".py".


Choosing a Language for a GIMP Plug-in

Plug-ins are usually usually written in the C language if they implement fundamental algorithms at the pixel level. Such plug-ins might need the speed of a compiled language and full access to the GIMP libraries. However, such plug-ins need to be separately compiled for each platform.

Plug-ins written in Scheme or Python usually implement


Tutorials on Programming GIMP Plug-ins

A tutorial on programming GIMP plug-ins in the Scheme language.