If you need to convert PNG, JPG, GIF, or BMP images to ICO icon files, or vice versa, then check out free online service ConvertICO.org. This one is different from many similar services in that it can create a genuine Windows 7 style icon with multiple frames that simultaneously supports the compressed PNG format.
ConvertICO.org can also extract images from an ICO file which has multiple color depth frames (most other similar online services are unable to do this). It can also perform multiple conversions in batch.
I will start this post with an admission: I do not know a lot about icons or the various technical aspects of icon files. However, I couldn’t help liking this service largely because of the enthusiasm that Jacob from ConvertICO.org showed when he emailed to tell me about it.
The following text is quoted verbatim from Jacob’s email:
“A Windows XP icon usually has multiple different sizes bitmaps inside it: 16×16, 24×24, 32×32, 48×48 pixels, a Windows 7 icon could contain both bitmaps and PNG images. If an icon has only PNG images inside it, it can not be rendered by Windows XP, but if it has both bitmaps and PNG images, it can be rendered by Windows 7 as well as Windows XP.
ConvertICO.org has 4 profiles:
- “ICO for Windows 7, Vista and newer” will create an icon which has 4 bitmaps(16×16, 24×24, 32×32, 48×48) AND a PNG image.
- “ICO for Windows XP and older” will create an icon which has 4 bitmaps(16×16, 24×24, 32×32, 48×48).
- “Favicon for your website” will create an icon which has only one bitmap (16×16).
- “Custom resolutions” will create an icon which contains one or more custom-size images.
If an image is large than 256×256 pixels, it will be resized to 256×256 pixels before conversion, because the maximum size of an icon supported by Windows is 256×256 pixels”.
The verdict: ConvertICO.org works well. It delivers what it promises and can convert images to ico or vice versa singly or in batch, and can grab an image off the internet if you provide a URL.
Note, however, that the maximmum file upload is 1 meg, and maxium resolution is 1024×1024, so you might want to resize images accordingly before uploading.
Visit Convertico.org to use the service.