Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Paint.NET file type plugin development

Paint.NET isn't very well documented in terms of what you need to do to develop a plugin.  And if your plugin is intended to add support for a new file type, rather than add a new image-related effect.. then there's even less information.  Luckily you can download a third-party template and use that as a base.

Ensure the project is set to use the .NET 3.5 framework (mine defaulted to 4.0).  If this is not done correctly, then your plugin will be ignored by Paint.NET.

Copy your compiled DLL from the Visual Studio project build directory to the FileTypes folder within your Paint.NET installation.

And that's pretty much the compile and test (or installation) cycle covered.  Debugging is another matter.  I'm not sure its possible with Visual Studio Express, but I think it is with the full version.  I had to make do with custom message boxes, but it could be worse! :-)

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

An alternative lossless video codec

I've been wanting to install a lossless video codec so that I can record something or other.  The recommended codec to use is the Techsmith Camtasia screen recording codec.  However, this only decodes and lacks the support for encoding.  Trying to encode gives the following dialog:

Installing the trial of Camtasia Studio unfortunately doesn't magically open up the encoding functionality for the trial period.  Luckily there's a free alternative in the confusingly named CamStudio.  CamStudio provides its own lossless video codec based on both LZO and GZIP.

There are a few teething issues.  I use Windows 7 64 bit and rhe codec doesn't appear in the list offered within the application I want to capture video within.  But thankfully moisamva has provided instructions on how to manually correct the installation, and they work for me.