FastStone Image Viewer could've just as easily be called FastStone Image Viewer, Editor, and Converter, which is a list of just few relevant tasks that this incredible free software tool can do with your photo collections. It supports all well-known graphic file formats (BMP, JPEG, PSD, PNG, ICO, GIF, etc.), including all the most widely used proprietary RAW camera formats (such as Canon, Minolta, Olympus, Pentax, or Nikon).
The amount of tools and utilities that come with this program is, at the very least, surprising considering that it's free. As the program’s name gives off very little information about what this “viewer” really does, you will need to hover over various icons and pull down various menu options to discover what it can do for your images and photos. Among other things, you can resize and resample your images without losing their original quality. Besides, you can remove unwanted parts not only by cropping or trimming your photos, but by “brushing out” whatever element you want to get rid of without cutting out the entire area. You can remove that terrible “red-eye” effect and change the color of an entire picture by applying any of the various color effects provided – sepia, negative, black and white, gray scale, etc. You can create “contact sheets” of your collections, image montages, desktop wallpapers, creative slideshows complete with transition effects and background music, etc.
On top of all these editing features, FastStone Image Viewer can also be used to help you keep your photo collection organized. It allows you to tag your pictures, and to copy and move them to the right folder in a simple and convenient way. To help you make the right choices, the program will show you their EXIF information and their histogram, and will also allow you to compare up to four images at a time in its convenient side-by-side interface.
Finally, since this is a viewer as well, it is important to highlight the excellent viewing experience that both its full-screen and slideshow modes offer. I am still amazed at the fact that this is a completely free software tool. I’m afraid I cannot simply recommend you to download it and check it out for yourself – I believe it is essential for any amateur image-lover to have it permanently installed on their system.