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[Review] Icon Commander 1.10

{rw_text}Giveaway of the day for July 7, 2009 is:

Icon Commander 1.10 [1]

Version reviewed:


Software description as per GOTD:

Icon Commander converts images of any format into Windows icons. You can find many images on the Internet and convert them to icons for use on your desktop, in applications and much more. Icon Commander have rich collection of icon styles. With IconCommander you can create Windows Icon with a single action. It supports Windows Vista 256×256 icons with alpha channel.

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{for=”Features as Described” value=”7″}Won’t let me create icons in any size but 256×256 but everything else works fine.
{for=”Ease of Use” value=”10″}Very easy to use.
{for=”Performance” value=”8″}A little on the heavy side on computer resource usage but otherwise works well.
{for=”Usefulness” value=”6″}While I do like this program, I also understand that many people have no need to create icons.
{for=”Arbitrary Equalizer” value=”8″}This category reflects an arbitrary number that does not specifically stand for anything. Rather this number is used to reflect my overall rating/verdict of the program in which I considered all the features and free alternatives.
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Registration and installation went fine.

Icon Commander is an elegant program to do a simple task: create icons. Icon Commander works in a  fairly straightforward way: load the image you want to turn into an icon, crop the image to select the content that you want to become the icon (you may use the whole image), add a frame to your icon (if you wish), select the size of your icon, save your icon, and done.

This is what Icon Commander looks like:

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Whatever image you load (according to the developer all image formats can be used and so far I have been unable to prove the developer wrong in my testing) will be displayed in the middle where the koala is now; you will then be able to crop the image as you desire (you may use the whole image or just a select part), rotate it, or flip it; there are also zoom controls to help you along the way:

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In addition to the cropping, rotating and flipping, you can also chose from many different frames to add to your icon:

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To the right of the program window notice the “icon panel”:

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This icon panel allows you to preview what the icon will look like (as you make changes the changes appear in live time) and chose the icon size. You may make the look of each individual icon size different than the look of the other sizes.

After you are satisfied with how your icon looks, you need to save it. Click on the icon size you want to save the icon as from the “icon panel”. Then go to the top of the program window and change the “Format” from “Max OS X Icon” to “Windows Icon” (you may also choose “PNG Image”) and click save:

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The one annoying thing I discovered is by default the “Format” will always be “Mac OS X” instead of “Windows” so you will need to change it every time.

So overall this program is very easy to use, and does its job very well. I especially like the frames. However there is one major bug I have run into. This may be a Vista only issue, I don’t know since I don’t have an XP machine to run it on, but I am only able to create 256×256 icons/PNG images. No matter what I try the program just won’t let me create anything but 256×256. This is a huge con because it cuts into the main functionality of the program. I am hoping this is a Vista only issue – someone with XP please confirm or deny.

Another con with this program the program is fairly computer resource intensive. It uses 35-45 MB of RAM depending on what you are doing and CPU fluctuates between 0-20%.

The last two cons are minor ones:

All that being said, I still give this program a thumbs up. I really like it. It is simple, easy to use and adds a nice twist to things with the frames feature.

This review was conducted on a laptop running Windows Vista Home Premium 32-bit. The specs of the laptop are as follows: 3GB of RAM, a Radeon HD 2600 512MB graphics card, and an Intel T8300 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo processor.


Easy Picture2Icon [10]

Easy Picture2Icon is a nice program that will turn any JPG, PNG, GIF or BMP image into 16×16, 32×32, and 48×48 icon files.

IcoFX [11]

IcoFX is an excellent icon creator/editor. It can do all that Icon Commander can do (bare the icon frames) + a lot more. It is, however, a lot more complicated to use.

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{rw_verdict2}I give Icon Commander a thumbs up. Yes I am having problems with creating icons other than 256×256 and yes this program is fairly resource intensive. However it is simple, easy to use, and gets the job done – the pros out weigh the cons in my opinion. Plus the frames is a nice added bonus feature. My recommendation today is to download Icon Commander and give it a go. See if it works for you – see if you can create the icon of your dreams with it. If not, drop the program and get IcoFX. I, for one, am keeping Icon Commander – a keeper in my eyes.
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