Software update: Paint.NET 3.5 build 3480 alpha

A new alpha version of Paint.NET version 3.5 was released on Sunday. Paint.NET is a photo editing program that is developed in C# and therefore requires the .NET Framework. In terms of functionality, the program is somewhere between the Paint supplied with Windows as standard and professional commercial programs such as Paint Shop Pro and Photoshop. Version 3.5 runs on Windows XP or higher and requires at least version 3.5 SP1 of the .NET Framework. In this third alpha release, the font and text rendering section, which has been completely rewritten, has now been completed. The complete release notes for this version can be found below:

Paint.NET v3.50 Alpha, build 3480 (updated)

This update focuses solely on finishing up the new font and text rendering stuff for the Text tool. The final changes ended up being much smaller in scope than I planned. I tried integrating FreeType as a text renderer but it was too onerous. I then tried WPF and it produced gorgeous text but had a tendency to crash on some fonts. So, in the end, we’re still sticking with GDI. Note that if you do not have font smoothing enabled in Windows, then Paint.NET will not be able to render anti-aliased text. By default, this is turned on even in Windows XP, so it shouldn’t be much of an issue except in certain Remote Desktop or Virtual PC situations.

The font list now draws the font name on the left and the font preview on the right. Some fonts are unreadable at the size needed for the dropdown list, and so having a consistent font on the left side should help.

Some people commented that in the previous build, text would be non-antialised at small sizes. I have a fix for that now, but as previously mentioned you must have font smoothing enabled in Windows. Otherwise Paint.NET will only be able to render non-antialiased text. period. Large text will still often revert to non-antialiased, but there is nothing that can be done about that. Eventually I will add DirectWrite support for Win7/Vista users, but not for version 3.5.

There are still a few issues to fix with respect to some text getting clipped on the left/right sides (esp. in certain ‘italic’ fonts), and some font issues in Windows XP (like the Tunga font).

Version number 3.5 build 3480 alpha
Release status Alpha
Operating systems Windows 7, Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008
Website Paint.NET
File size 4.54MB
License type Conditions (GNU/BSD/etc.)