How to Save as PNG in GIMP?

With GIMP 2.8 or above, it allows you to save files in XCF format only. While, in its previous versions, GIMP directly provides the option to save images in JPEG, PNG, and other formats.

Like PSD file is Adobe Photoshop’s file format, GIMP produces the image files in XCF format, which contains almost everything, including layers, formatting, and other information related to an image. However, XCF files are not compatible with the major image editing programs and are also not accepted extensively on the web.

Using a newer version of GIMP, you will see the export command is used to store photos in various formats. In this guide, we will give you brief information on saving the image as PNG in GIMP.

The new version of GIMP has come up with a new option replacing the old way to save an image in different formats that allows you to save an image using the CTRL+S shortcut. Now, you can do so using the export option. Here’s how:

First, you need to open an image in GIMP by clicking on the File then Open.

Now, complete the editing and go to the “Export as” option under the File section, or use the “Shift,CTRL and E” as shortcut keys.

After that, select the file type to convert the image into your desired format, which is PNG in this topic.

Now, you can choose the PNG format from the list.

Adjust the file’s properties such as resolution, compression, color profile, etc.

Finally, click on the Export and save your file into PNG format.

Note: The one drawback of this conversion is that PNG will not inherit all the properties of an XCF file, such as layers will be merged automatically, texts you drafted within the image cannot be edited.

If you want to modify the image and its component, you will be required to convert it back to XCF format to make it editable.


Whatever your objective is behind extracting your file in PNG format, we have drafted a simple guide that will help you save an image file in GIMP into PNG. Hope this tutorial will help you to understand how to save as PNG in GIMP.

PNG is one of the most popular image formats on the web. Do you know a PNG file supports lossless compression? Meaning when you compress a PNG, it doesn’t lose the quality and retain all the data in the file. Moreover, it also supports transparency which means you can have a transparent background in a PNG file.

About the author

Prateek Jangid

A passionate Linux user for personal and professional reasons, always exploring what is new in the world of Linux and sharing with my readers.