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Desperate HELP Needed In Recovering My Work!

#1 User is offline   Sunheart 

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 05:30 PM

I've seached the internet and these forums for answers, with no luck.

GIMP seemed to freeze on me, though Task Manager said it was still running. In an effort to resolve the problem, I closed down all other programs, and-- while closing down all unnecessary GIMP windows (brushes, layers, etc)-- I accidentally closed down GIMP itself!

I am desperate to recover the project I was working on. I have thought about periodically saving the project while working on it, but I'm unsure how this is done, as there is no "Save Project" feature.

1. Is there ANY WAY POSSIBLE to recover my seemingly-lost project? (I mean ANY way, including System Restore, or some other way to "travel back in time" on my computer)

2. How can I avoid such a calamity in the future? Is there a way to save projects in GIMP, so that work may be continued at a later time after GIMP has been closed-down?

Again, I'm willing to try things to recover my work even outside of GIMP's capabilities... I suspect that the info is still stored SOMEWHERE on my hard-drive. I'm open to any and all effective ideas, so please feel free to post-- supporting an already-stated idea or posting your own-- even if someone else has posted a response here.

Thank You for your help...
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#2 User is offline   PhotoComix 

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 06:23 PM

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As far i know the only ,,very limited way to save something when freezing would have been a screenshoot (that would have saved only the visible no layer path or other info )

So i'm afraid there is no way to save a lost work, and i believe there are no graphic editor able to do it (but i noticed that other kind of software ,as exemple openoffice word processor have some way to automatically save in case of crash or even if the computer or program is suddenly close...but that will no help much in this case

2
well i have no clear what you mean to save "project"...you may save the image with all its layer channels and paths,(BUT you may NOT save "undo history)

As sort of workaround you may use several times "save as copy" always adding (or changing) something as a progressive number to the name to save different versions,meaning the steps of a work in progress (to sort of replace the missed Undo history)

Not sure if there is a script to do it...for sure will be helpful

Maybe the solution may be a external application able to record all gimp info...but at the moment is sci-fi ,just now there is not even a simple macro recorder for gimp while this should be done by something much more advanced

(more "Undo information" seems not available by script or plugin (so even less by external SW), obviously are stored somewhere, at least temporary, but seems no way to reach them, and so even less to convert them in something useful to restore unsaved images)
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#3 User is offline   Sunheart 

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 06:52 PM

ARG! This is what I feared... That my work may be irretrievable. Thank You for responding.

(If someone else does know of a solution to my dilemma, I'd love to hear it)

PhotoComix, when I ask if there is a way to save projects in GIMP, so that work may be continued at a later time after GIMP has been closed-down, I use the word "project" to describe the image and everything that GIMP has done to modify the original image (i.e. layers, effects, etc.). When you say that I "may save the image with all its layer channels and paths", do you mean that I can reopen this (project) and continue my work at a later time after GIMP has been closed-down? If so, then what file-type should I save the image as?
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#4 User is offline   PhotoComix 

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 07:04 PM

Quote

When you say that I "may save the image with all its layer channels and paths", do you mean that I can reopen this (project) and continue my work at a later time after GIMP has been closed-down?


yes ,exactly ( only" undo " info will be discarted)

Quote

If so, then what file-type should I save the image as?


xcf, use always that to save original, then you may save copy for web as jpg or png
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#5 User is offline   Sunheart 

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 08:39 PM

Sweet... Thanks!

Of course you realize that if I knew about saving images as an "xcf" file, then I SURELY would have done so, and would not be in this desperate situation... I'm hyper-cautious (and mildly paranoid) about events like this occurring, and I like to save my projects periodically, just in case of an accident such as this.

Thanks for your help, PhotoComix!

Anyone else know of any solutions to retrieve unsaved GIMP images after the program has been closed-down?
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#6 User is offline   Griatch 

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 09:08 PM

No, there is no way to retrieve your work that I know of.

A normal work process is to save to an .xcf file, as Photocomix pointed out (this is Gimp's equvalence to .psd in photoshop) as you work, saving all layers and so on.

If you later want to make copies of your image in some other format, like .jpg (for e.g. web use), I really recommend using File->Save a Copy instead of Save as. This is because Save as will set your current image to the new type and it can get confusing since your normal Save function will save to that format then. With Save a copy you always keep your .xcf file open in the window and just export copies of it in different formats. Much more convenient and easy to keep track of.
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#7 User is offline   Pixkid 

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 09:33 PM

I think that the Temp. folder in Gimp saves your work periodically... not sure, but I've gotten back work from it.
pixkid@macmini~$ open -a Gimp.app
bash: you want fries with that
pixkid@macmini~$ echo No thank you, I am on a diet.
bash: you make me feel unloved with your excuses
pixkid@macmini~$ echo What? Are you insinuating that I do not eat your food? When did shells ever execute commands relevant to cooking?
bash: shells duh ever think of seafood
pixkid@macmini~$ echo No fair, stop searching puns, you have Lynx and Google to use!
bash: ugh you humans are so annoying
bash: logout

[Process completed]
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#8 User is offline   Sunheart 

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 09:39 PM

Quote

Save as will set your current image to the new type and it can get confusing...

Quote

With Save a copy... Much more convenient and easy to keep track of.

Thanks for responding, Griatch. I appreciate the help. I totally understand now that using "Save A Copy" will save the image as an xcf file and that using "Save As" will change the image from xcf to the new file-type... But because I've only used "Save As" and never used the "Save A Copy" option, I don't know exactly what you mean...

1. Why can "Save As" be more confusing?

2. How is "Save A Copy" more convenient and easier to keep track of?
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#9 User is offline   Sunheart 

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 09:48 PM

Thanks, Pixkid... I'm having difficulty locating my GIMP Temp folder... Any ideas?

I've found 'C:\Documents and Settings\\.gimp2.2\tmp', but the folder there is empty.

Anyone?

Still hoping there's a chance I can save all my tedious work!
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#10 User is offline   PhotoComix 

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Posted 04 March 2008 - 12:54 AM

I'm almost sure gimp DON't save images periodically by itself , it may save "undo" info but that are discarded when closing gimp or the image.

then i will be happy to discover i'm wrong ,..

Abaut save as is safe if you save as xcf..but .if you use for other format is easy make mistakes

as example when closing the image you will be asked if you want save also the last changes...if you say yes after saving as Jpg or png (or any other kind of files except xcf and pds) gimp will save again as jpg...that means discard all layers paths and selections
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#11 User is offline   Griatch 

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Posted 04 March 2008 - 07:06 PM

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Thanks for responding, Griatch. I appreciate the help. I totally understand now that using "Save A Copy" will save the image as an xcf file and that using "Save As" will change the image from xcf to the new file-type... But because I've only used "Save As" and never used the "Save A Copy" option, I don't know exactly what you mean...

1. Why can "Save As" be more confusing?

2. How is "Save A Copy" more convenient and easier to keep track of?


The basic thing to keep in mind is that you should in general always do your changes on the .xcf file which can save the most GIMP-relevant stuff if you ever would want to go back and fix something. Don't work on e.g. the .jpg version if you can avoid it.

You choose which file format you save to when saving your image the first time this should normally be the .xcf format. After that, when you choose Save (Ctrl-S) it saves the image in that format without any requesters or anything popping up. Now, if you choose Save as you are choosing to save you current image in a new format (and in a different file). Let's say you choose .jpg. A new jpg image is created and you continue to work on that image, not on the xcf image. Now, if you where to continue doing some changes on your image and pressed Ctrl-S, you would get a requester warning you that your layers will be lost. That's because you are now saving to your jpg image which cannot handle layers or anything else. If you later load your .xcf file it will only be the image saved up to the point when you did the save as and chose to save to a different file. Save as means you choose to do your work with a different file than that you started out with. It is quite logical, but it can also be confusing if you are not sure that is what you wanted.

If you instead choose Save a copy you also get to choose a new file name to save to. Let's say you choose to save as a .jpg in this case too. Ok, you do and your image is exported to a jpg file. but your .xcf file remains the one you work with. If you press Ctrl-S to save now you will still be saving all your layers and GIMP info to the .xcf file. It's working just as it says -- it dumps a copy of your original xcf into a file with whatever format you want without messing with the original. A lot more conveneint and easy to keep track of, in my view.
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#12 User is offline   Sunheart 

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Posted 04 March 2008 - 11:49 PM

Thank You, PhotoComix, for the hopeful wishes and the helpful information!

Quote

... If you instead choose Save a copy... your image is exported to a jpg file. but your .xcf file remains the one you work with. If you press Ctrl-S to save now you will still be saving all your layers and GIMP info to the .xcf file... a copy of your original xcf into a file with whatever format you want without messing with the original.

COMPLETELY! And way more convenient! BRAVO! Freakin' awesome... I'm very thankful that you took the time to elaborate in detail... As I read your post and understood what you were saying, more questions were raised in my mind... Questions that you actually answered in your closing paragraph. Needeless to say, I'm excited to finally understand that this is actually better than I had hoped for!

So what you're saying then is that I can "Save A Copy" as any file-type (e.g. a .jpg), and the original image-- along with all it's GIMP info-- remains intact as an .xcf file while I continue to work on it. That's awesome!

Knowing even this now raises another question...

Can I access the .xcf file at a later date and continue to work on the project, even after GIMP has been closed-down and the original work was saved (as "A Copy") into another format (e.g. a .jpg)?

If so, then where is the .xcf stored? In other words, what is the directory of the .xcf? (Or is this something that I choose myself?)

Also, if the .xcf is in fact stored somewhere for future-use, then is all the info actually contained within the .xcf, or must the original image remain in the original directory for me to re-open the .xcf? (For example: In Windows Movie Maker, you can save the project you're working on (with all the Movie Maker info) to be worked on at a later date UNLESS you move the original file or rename the original file. So then Movie Maker does not actually save the file itself, but instead saves only the directory and name of the original file, and info about your project.)

Thanks again to all of you for your help!
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#13 User is offline   Griatch 

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Posted 05 March 2008 - 01:49 AM

GIMP has no concept of "Project". The .xcf file is just a different type of image file, in the same way as a .jpg or gif except the .xcf understands GIMPs layers and settings. You choose to save your image as an .xcf file when you first save your image (this is usually the default). You can save it wherever you want on your harddrive, and then your image and layers are safe there also if you close down GIMP. It doesn't matter where the xcf is located as long as you can find it. You can later choose to open the xcf just like you would any image file -- with the added bonus that when loading the xcf you will get back all the layers and so on as you had when you saved it before. Only thing it doesn't retain is the undo-steps, those are lost.
Because of this extra info, the xcf is much bigger than e.g. a .jpg (an .xcf is often many MB large depending on how large your image is and how many layers you have, in some of my larger images the xcf is over 100MB). Also, the xcf is essentially only useful in GIMP. That's why you normally use it to work with in GIMP, and then export (with Save a copy) to formats which are smaller and readable by browsers or whatever.

Hope that helped. :-)
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#14 User is offline   Sunheart 

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Posted 05 March 2008 - 06:21 AM

Thanks for the help! I get it now... An .xcf is simply a file-type of it's own that contains pertinent info that GIMP can read, and is not technically an extension to a saved "project". You rock... Thanks for your patience and your help!
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