Open Photoshop PSD Files Without Adobe PhotoShop

By Sidharth | Ideas

Imagine that you have an old picture of your grandparents that you want cleaned up digitally. You have scanned the scratchy and grainy picture and sent it over to your friend who is quite the wizard at Photoshop instead of giving it to a studio.

Your friend does a great job at restoring the picture, shows it to you and returns the retouched picture in a CD. However, the catch is that the picture is in a PSD format which cannot be viewed using regular image viewers and you do not have Adobe Photoshop software loaded. So how do you open “PSD File” for taking a printout?

Well, things are not quite so bleak for people in similar situations or those who simply do not wish to buy the memory-consuming expensive software. There are several ways you can preview PSD (Photoshop Document files) or even open PSD files without having the Adobe Photoshop software installed.

One of the first alternatives would be to install GIMP. GIMP or GNU Image Manipulating Program is a handy adaptable software which not only supports PSD files, serving as a PSD file viewer but is also a multipurpose tool that can be used for various image-related tasks starting with using it for simple paint purposes to restoring or fixing photographs and images.


And the best thing about GIMP is that it is free. Also, you can easily boost it with the use of plug-ins.

Another software which can be used for opening previewing PSD files without Photoshop would be the FastStone Image Viewer.


It has PSD viewing features including a host of image retouching functions such as red-eye removal, contrast and color adjustment, cropping and resizing along with lossless JPEG transition. This stable, snappy and user-friendly freeware can quite easily become the image manipulating software of your choice.

PAINT.NET is also another alternative, however, you would need to install a specific plug-in before you can open PSD files as the software does not support these by default. This plug-in can be downloaded quite easily from the official site.


PAINT.NET is quite a decent image editing tool although one point of concern would be that not all features of PSD files are supported by the plug-in that helps you open and view them.

Apart from the ones suggested here, there are several other free software available that can support the viewing of PSD files, so there is no reason to lose heart!

About the Author

Hi, I am Sidharth. Full-time blogger. Editor of Blogote. And a self-proclaimed geek!