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How to Install GIMP 2.8 RC1 in Ubuntu

Update: GIMP 2.8 PPA is now available. Check out instructions for Ubuntu 12.04 and Ubuntu 11.10.

GIMP 2.8 will bring major new features including single-window mode, layer groups and on-canvas text editing.

Just few days back, GIMP 2.8 RC1 was released which is probably last snapshot before final version 2.8 is available.

GIMP PPA by Matt Walker has not been updated with latest packages yet. However, Strycore has created a handy script that will compile and install GIMP 2.8 RC1 without touching existing packages available in repositories.

Make the script executable, run it and follow the on screen instructions. The entire process will take some time and it will download around 300-400 MB stuff as full source code will be downloaded. Also, I have only tested this script on Ubuntu 12.04 but it should work in earlier versions too.

As with every script, be aware that it comes with no guarantees.

For reference, GIMP 2.8 has following features (taken from Fedora Wiki)
  • Single-Window Mode optionally displays all images and dockable dialogs in one window instead of several (which remains the default).
  • Layer Groups allow layers to be organized in tree-like structures.
  • Editing text with the Text Tool is now performed on-canvas instead of in a separate window. Mixing different text styles in the same layer is now possible.
  • Saving and exporting are now separate activities. Saving an image can only be done in GIMP's native XCF format.
  • Size entries allow simple mathematical expressions, like "50%", "30in + 40px" or "4 * 5.4in".
  • The brush dynamics engine has been expanded considerably, making almost all aspects of the brush engine drivable by a multitude of inputs, all of them configurable with their own response curve.
  • State of tools is now savable as presets with meaningful names.
  • A completely new Cage transform tool has been added, implementing an innovative approach to free transformation which makes it possible to easily warp parts of objects using an adjustable user-defined polygonal frame.
  • New widgets, configuration and other improvements for users of advanced input devices (e.g. tablets).
  • It is now possible to tag GIMP resources such as brushes and patterns.
  • Lots of other minor improvements and bugfixes.


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