How-To: Easy Photo and Image Resizing in Windows XP, Vista and Mac OS X

Quickly resizing images seems like a common and straight-forward enough task that one would think it should be built in to any modern operating system. Unfortunately, it doesn't come pre-packaged in any! I've tried context-menu (right click) plug-ins, batch processors and various scripts. My goal was to find the fastest and easiest image resizer for the given OS. Read on to find the best solutions for your platform.

Windows XP
There are a slew of applications available to deal with images in a variety of ways in Windows XP. There are so many, in fact, that I'm not even going to attempt to review them. I'm sure many people use Adobe Photoshop to do their resizing, which I find tedious when I want to scale a whole folder of images to one size. The clear solution is actually a PowerToy from Microsoft. It's available as "Image Resizer." Just download and run to install. Once installed, all you have to do is right click on any given image or group of images and then click "Resize Pictures." You'll be presented with a dialog giving you sizes and the option of resizing the original or saving the resized image as a copy. It's very straightforward, handles multiple images and is the fastest way I've found to resize images in Windows XP.

XP Image Resizer Right-Click Context MenuXP Image Resizer Right-Click Context Menu

XP Image Resizer DialogXP Image Resizer Dialog

Windows Vista
For being an OS trying to lead the path for content-rich features, my mind was blown when I saw that Vista has built in support for rotating images but not resizing! I figured that Microsoft for sure would integrate the XP PowerToy cited above for Vista, but not only did they leave it out, they have yet to offer a comparable plug-in.

I was using Batch Picture Resize but then switched to VSO for about a year. Now I'm just using the photo toys clone. If you like having lots of options, go for Batch Picture Resize or the slightly buggy but still good VSO. If you want it simple, just use the Photo Toys Clone, which is a clone of the popular XP Power Toy that works in Vista.

Batch Picture ResizeBatch Picture Resize

Mac OS X
Again, I'm surprised that OS X doesn't have built-in support for photo resizing but fortunately there are many products available that do it. I think the best way to do this is by setting up an automator to do the resizing for you. The scripts they offer provide support for 2 common resolutions and I believe they are tweakable. Check here for Apple's download.

Apple's image resize automator scriptsApple's image resize automator scripts


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Works great!

Works great!

re: How-To: Easy Photo and Image Resizing in Windows XP, Vista

Nice find, Nick! I'm definitely going to give it a shot.

re: How-To: Easy Photo and Image Resizing in Windows XP, Vista

VSO Image Resizer is kinda buggy... but when it works properly, it's fast and pretty good at what it does.However, if you're like me and you miss the old XP PowerToys image resizer, check this out:Screenshot: clever guy has managed to clone that feature of the XP PowerToys set and made it possible to use on Vista.I've installed it on Vista Ultimate SP1 x32 Edition and it works perfectly. VSO has now been uninstalled and my search for a bug free Vista image resize from the context menu is over.Download it here:Download: :)