Free Lightroom Alternative darktable Announces Latest Update: Comes to Windows for the First Time

Free Lightroom Alternative darktable Announces Latest Update: Comes to Windows for the First Time

Good news for Windows users: after an eight-year wait, darktable, the free Lightroom alternative for editing raw photos, is now available.

The open-source software can now be used on Windows, despite being Mac and Linux operable since as far back as 2009. The graphics editor is aimed at “non-destructive raw photo postproduction,” with a particular focus on handling a large number of images for a smoother workflow.

Making light of the delay, darktable took to their official website to exclaim: “Hell froze over.”

We finally ported darktable to Windows and intend to support it in the future. At the moment it’s still lacking a few features (for example there is no printing support), has a few limitations (tethering requires special drivers to be installed) and comes with its own set of bugs (TIFF import and export doesn’t support non-ASCII characters in file names). But overall we are confident that it’s quite usable already and hope you will enjoy it.

As well as being Windows-compatible for the first time, darktable's latest version (2.4.0) brings with it updates, new features and bug fixes.

See the official announcement here, find the current darktable feature list here, and download darktable 2.4.0 on Github.

[via MSPoweruser and Petapixel]

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Not quite soup yet. Doesn't support full IPTC - missing a lot of stuff. I intend to keep an eye on this, but I'm not going to rely on it any time soon. I'm convinced that FOSS (Free Open Source Software) can be outstanding, but it has to be widely supported by a large number of programmers who share a passion for the subject. Hope this is the case, but we'll see.

Spy Black's picture

I think this is a good time to slowly get used to programs like this if you have a standalone version of Lightroom. As time goes by, the standalone version of Lightroom will become incompatible with new gear and therefore obsolete, while software like this which, while at this time may not be fully up to speed, will finally "fill out" and become a viable alternative.

Spike S's picture

I've downloaded and tried Darktable twice. Both times, I was unable to get Darktable to see external drives, which is where the images are. And the support/help wasn't useful, neither was anything I could find with Google. Kind of makes it hard to take it seriously.

Jeena Paradies's picture

You have seen that the Windows version is a Alpha version and still has many known bugs? Especially the external drive stuff works compleatly different on windows in comperisson to Mac and Linux, so it's no wonder that the one developer who helps out porting it to Windows missed that, he might not have his pictures on a different drive for example.

- Did you file a bug?
- Did you talk to the developers on IRC?
- Did you ask on the mailing list?

Those are the main three ways of getting in contact with developers of free software (free as in libre, not beer).

Jeena Paradies's picture

I've been using it for a coupple of years now and am really happy about it. As a programmer it's especially nice to be able to read their blog where they describe the math and computer science behind different features and it's really good to see so much transparency. You can easily get in touch with people working on it via IRC and you can even fix bugs yourself which is mega awesome.