Howto | Open Multipage TIFFs in KDE

The Issue

Most image viewers only show the first page of a multi-page TIFF. The KDE document viewers, of which there are many (KView, KFax, KDVI) will not open them, stating “This version can only handle fax files”.

The Explanation

Wikipedia states that: -“Programmers were free to specify new tags and options, but not all implemented programs supported all created tags. As a result, TIFF soon became the lowest common denominator. Today, the majority of TIFF images and readers are still based on uncompressed 32-bit CMYK or 24-bit RGB images.”~

The end result is that the KDE document viewers except a CCITT Group 4 compressed monochrome document, whilst ImageMagick creates a JPEG compressed document.

The Solution

Currently my solution is simply to convert the document as required (you will need ImageMagick on your system):

$ convert source.tif -monochrome -compress group4 destination.tif

Further Thoughts

This fix is fine for geeks, but not much use for mere mortals. My thought is to create a script which uses ImageMagick to interrogate the TIFF file, convert it, if required, into a temporary location, and then open it in one of the KDE document viewers. Then associate the file-type with that script.


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