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#1 2012-06-15 23:04:46

#! gimpbanger
From: N51.5 W002.8 (mostly)
Registered: 2011-11-24
Posts: 4,947

HowTo: Setup GIMP + GimpPaintStudio + Gimp Unified Resource Manager

HowTo: Set up GIMP, GIMP Paint Studio and GURM


    I like to run Gimp Paint Studio which installs a bunch of pre-sets (tools, workspace, brushes etc) which is great for digital painting, but doesn't suit other stuff I like to do.
    Previously I installed the various new rc files, then adjusted the Preferences: the problem with that is all the extra brushes, gradients, patterns etc which I wouldn't usually use. I could move them all to my gimp-resources directory and load them as needed with GURM (Gimp Unified Resource Manager), but then I'd have to re-set the workspace as well.
    GIMP is notorious for being slow to load after you have added downloaded brushes, gradients, patterns... but at least the new tool filters in GIMP-2.8 make it easier to keep track of them. I still prefer the Gimp Unified Resource Manager (GURM) though, and it really helps the workflow.
    So this is how to set up GIMP so that you can start it with whatever preferences you have previously chosen, and also be able to start it with the Gimp Paint Studio workspace, tool presets etc. Then you can use GURM to manage all the resources, so that they don't need to be loaded at startup and clog up the dialogs with stuff you may rarely use....

Setting up the GIMP directories

    1 Create a gimp-resources directory (call it what you like smile ) and copy in all the sub-directories from .gimp-2.x (This also has the advantage that if you re-install or upgrade you just need to point GIMP here instead of having to reinstall your resources again)
    I have sub-dirs within that to store my resources so for example:


    Some of these are what will appear in the GURM tabbed dialog later...
    2 Duplicate the .gimp-2.x directory and rename it eg .gimp-gps, to be used by Gimp Paint Studio.
    3 Delete the contents of the subdirs brushes,palettes,gradients,patterns and tool-options in .gimp-2.x (Really! Mind you, I backed them all up first smile )

Setting up Gimp Paint Studio

"Gimp Paint Studio is "a collection of brushes and accompanying tool presets" for the free open-source program Gimp.
    But it is also an attempt at something more. It is also an independent initiative to push for the increased awareness that Gimp is not only useful for cropping photos, adjusting colour balances and make minor website graphics.
    Gimp is also an excellent tool for digital painters, creating completely new works of art from scratch, a capacity that is not always fully realized by the default setup, untill now. Developers are working on more features for next releases.
    The GPS's collected artistic media presets and brush collection is one step on the way towards making GIMP a more pleasant environment for digital artists."

    1 Download the latest GPS (June 2012 zip file: GPSv1.5)
    2 Copy the contents of the unzipped brushes,palettes,gradients,patterns and tool-options directories into those in .gimp-gps
    3 If you want to add some tools to the Toolbox then copy the toolrc file to .gimp-gps This file will add icons for the new tools in the Toolbox.
    Do the same with the file sessionrc if you want to modify the GPS position and rearrange the windows on the Gimp's screen. This will set the layout of GIMP's windows to what the developer reckons is good for digital painting (you can reset them later anyway).

Setting up GIMP Unified Resource Manager

    NB Some have found this script to be buggy, but it works OK for me

    1 Download the zipfile
    2 Follow the README instructions - basically you place the gurm.ini and files into plug-ins, and edit the paths to point to your resources.
    The first stanza in my gurm.ini, for example, reads ...

[Brush Manager]
    useManager = yes
    gimpPath = /home/damo/.gimp-2.8/brushes
    userPath = /home/damo/graphics/gimp/gimp-resources/brushes
    extensions = .gbr,.vbr,.gih,.abr,
    installedOptions = gimp-default-brushes

    NB python scripts MUST go into "plug-ins" NOT "scripts" (and ensure it is executable)!!
    3 A tweak I have done is to have "GURM" appear in the GIMP menubar, not buried in an out-of-date Xtns or Filters Menu. Edit the file as follows:
        About 4 lines from the end of the script, change




Starting different instances of GIMP

    Now for the sneaky bit smile What we want is to be able to run GIMP with the default installation, and also with the GPS presets and workspace. So we need to be able to point each instance of GIMP to its own gimprc settings.
    1 Edit the paths in the ./gimp-gps/gimprc file to point to that dir instead of the installation default
    2 Set the env variable that GIMP looks for on startup to GIMP2_DIRECTORY=~/.gimp-gps when GIMP GPS is run with a script...

    ## set GIMP environment variable to path for Gimp with GimpPaintStudio presets
    export GIMP2_DIRECTORY=~/.gimp-gps
    ## run new instance of GIMP
    gimp-2.8 -n &

    Call it eg gimp-gps, put it in your path, and make executable
    3 Set up your launcher or keybinds to start whichever version you choose: here's my Openbox rc.xml for example...

<!-- GIMP 2.8 -->
        <keybind key="W-g">
            <action name="Execute">
                <command>gimp-2.8 -n</command>
        <keybind key="W-A-g">
            <action name="Execute">


    I use different splash screens for each instance of GIMP
aacI1W6O.jpg    aazqbE5w.jpg

    You can have any number of images(don't make them too small though) - GIMP will load one at random at startup, if there is more than one. Just put them in splashes (create it if it doesn't exist)

    GPS settings
    The next step is optional but will improve the overall usability of the user interface.
        Edit->Preferences->Toolbox Activate the three ticks available there.
        Edit->Preferences->Tool Options Under the Paint Options Shared Between Tools, disable the three options (Brush, Pattern, and Gradient).
        Edit->Preferences->Image Windows/Mouse Pointers Disable the “Show brush outline” option and make sure you have “checked” or enabled the “Show pointer for paint tools”.This will increase the speed of brushes when you are painting.

Happy GIMPing smile.....

Artwork at deviantArt;  Iceweasel Personas;  SLiM #! Themes;  Openbox themes


Be excellent to each other!

#2 2012-06-15 23:10:56

Registered: 2011-03-09
Posts: 4,396

Re: HowTo: Setup GIMP + GimpPaintStudio + Gimp Unified Resource Manager

very nice howto Damo! great work!


#3 2012-06-16 21:01:33

#! Ranger
From: V-Ger
Registered: 2011-04-26
Posts: 10,165

Re: HowTo: Setup GIMP + GimpPaintStudio + Gimp Unified Resource Manager

Awesome How To damo!

Added to Quick References under Gimp/Design/Art

VSIDO | Words That Build Or Destroy

We do not run from challenges, they become new innovations within VSIDO!


#4 2012-11-01 08:36:17

New Member
From: Arizona, USA
Registered: 2012-11-01
Posts: 1

Re: HowTo: Setup GIMP + GimpPaintStudio + Gimp Unified Resource Manager

GIMP 2.8
Ubuntu 12.04
DELL Inspiron 1545 laptop

Would like to have started new topic, but this was the only thread I could find here on GIMP.  Hate to bury this in here, but I can't see any alternative.  Mods:  If this needs to be moved, please do so.

I am the ONLY user on my machine.

Am a casual GIMP user (mess with it for "entertainment"), still learning, and really don't know my way around that much.

Am wanting to install a brush manager to organize my brushes.  Have read on GIMP CHAT ( and and ) that there are advantages and disadvantages to GURM ( ) and MrQ-Brush_Manager (package "Basic manager").  ATM, I'm leaning toward GURM, but am still considering either.

I downloaded a bunch of brush packages from deviant art (e.g. "", "", "", and several more) and if I just merge them with my existing default packages of brushes I'll have a jumbled mess.  So right out of the gate I want to organize them so I don't have to go hunting among the default brushes.

But the paths shown (in Ubuntu, NOT Windows) have me confused.  I'll explain why in a second.

First of all, I have a /<user name>/.gimp-2.6/ path.  All of the .gimp-2.6 folders are completely empty, including /<user name>/.gimp-2.6/brushes.  But what really baffles me about it is that I don't have 2.6, I have 2.8.  I vaguely recall that Canonical came out with a GIMP upgrade in their repository, or maybe I myself did an upgrade, so perhaps this is just a remnant from when I had 2.6.  My sense is that this 2.6 folder doesn't really matter, and I could just as well delete it, but before I do I'd like some opinions.

Now I also have a /<user name>/.gimp-2.8/ path.  Like the .gimp-2.6 folders, all of the .gimp-2.8 folders are completely empty, including /<user name>/.gimp-2.8/brushes.  Since I am the only user, should they be?

Finally, there is a /usr/share/gimp/2.0/ path, including /usr/share/gimp/2.0/brushes.  The "2.0" concerns me a little bit . . . shouldn't it be 2.8?

Nevertheless, whether the "2.0" is correct or not, all the path folders are populated.  For example, /usr/share/gimp/2.0/brushes contains subfolders titled "Basic", "gimp-obsolete-files", "Legacy", "Media", "Sketch", "Splatters", and "Texture".  And, for example, the "Basic" folder contains "1-pixel.vbr", "Block-01.vbr", "Block-02.vbr" and several others.

The "Legacy" folder, for example also, contains such files as "confetti.gbr", "confetti.gih", "dunes.gbr", and a few more.

That's fine . . . I realize all those extensions are GIMP brushes.

Now these all show up in my GIMP 2.8, so evidently it's drawing from the /usr/share/gimp/2.0/ path and not the /<user name>/.gimp-2.8/ path.  That's one thing that has me confused, though if it did draw from the /<user name>/.gimp-2.8/ path, I guess all the resources would be empty.

My head is spinning so much from all these paths, that I can't remember 'sperimenting with populating the /<user name>/.gimp-2.8/ path, but maybe I did.  Right now it's all empty.  So, first question:  If I did put some brushes (extracted from the .zips) into the /<user name>/.gimp-2.8/brushes path, would they over ride the /usr/share/gimp/2.0/brushes and show up in my GIMP 2.8?  Or would they just merge with them and show up still?

Now I have another question.  I seem to have read somewhere (unfortunately I didn't bookmark it, nor can I remember where) that you cannot create subfolders in the /<user name>/.gimp-2.8/ path and expect the brushes of that subfolder to show up.  BUT, subfolders of the /usr/share/gimp/2.0/ path DO seem to show up.  For example, /usr/share/gimp/2.0/brushes/Legacy DOES show up.

So, the question:  Where should I put my additional brushes . . . in a subfolder in the /usr/share/gimp/2.0/brushes path, or the /<user name>/.gimp-2.8/ path?  The obvious answer seems to be:  "a subfolder in the /usr/share/gimp/2.0/brushes path".  Otherwise, if I put them in the /<user name>/.gimp-2.8/brushes path, they would be all jumbled up with the other brushes (IF they even showed up.)

Now granted, even putting them in the /usr/share/gimp/2.0/brushes path would still result in them being mixed up with the defaults, but at least the primitive filter function in 2.8 is capable of showing the additions separately under the subfolder title I would choose.  That filter function is not really a brush manager, but at least it can show separate brushes.

Which is why I'm looking to a brush manager . . . something a little more sophisticated and more robust than just filters.

Which leads me to the next, and main, questions.

In the GURM .ini, I see there are paths, BUT they seem to be WINDOWS PATHS, and not Linux paths.

For example, the second line of the ini is "gimpPath = C:\Documents and Settings\<Your windows user>\<your gimp version>\brushes".

So would I change this to "/usr/share/gimp/2.0/brushes" or "/<user name/.gimp-2.8/brushes", or something else?

Same question for the third line, "userPath = <Your Path>".

And then in, we have "GURMINI = "C:\Dokumente und Einstellungen\<your user>\.gimp-2.6\plug-ins\gurm.ini".

What do I change that to?

The GURM readme.txt seems to reference all Windows paths.

And then in the, we have "ACTIVE_DIR=r"C:\Documents and Settings\Marek\.gimp-2.8\brushes" and "INSTALL_DIR=r"C:\Documents and Settings\Marek\.gimp-2.8\brushes_alternate".  It's all Windows paths.  So what the heck would I change these to?

Where would I put the GURM files, or the  In /<user name>/.gimp-2.8/plug-ins, or /usr/share/gimp/2.0/plug-ins (I don't have that subfolder in that path, so would I have to create it?), or somewhere else?

Summary of questions:

1.  What path do I install my deviant art additional brushes to?

2.  What paths should I use in gurm.ini and, or

3.  Where do I put either of the managers?

Finally, I read on GIMP CHAT that GURM takes the brushes out of the install folders and puts them in its own folders.  I haven't been able to get my arms around that one, so I guess I'm going to have to read over those threads until it sinks into this thick skull.  Any clarifications on that?

Dell Inspiron 1545 laptop
Ubuntu 12.04.1 LTS


#5 2014-03-24 00:51:55

New Member
Registered: 2014-03-23
Posts: 1

Re: HowTo: Setup GIMP + GimpPaintStudio + Gimp Unified Resource Manager

Hi, Damo -- excited to try this, but I cannot seem to get GURM to load anywhere in GIMP. It's not under the Filters menu, nor is it anywhere to be found. I did try setting it up using your <Toolbox> tweak, but that didn't work either.

FYI, I followed all your instructions, for both GPS and GURM, including duplicating the folders, etc. All my GIMP goodies are now in a folder called "gimp-resources" and are also backed up outside GIMP just in case.

I've searched all over trying to find a way to get GURM to show up, but nothing's worked yet. I've spent all day on this with no luck. Suggestions?

p.s. If you'd like me to post the contents of the gimprc or other file, let me know.

Linux Mint 13 Maya
GIMP 2.8
GURM v07
GPS 2.0


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