How to open, create and save .ico files in Photoshop?

Adobe Photoshop is great software for graphic designers. It provides almost all functionality to design killer images, icons, templates, posters and many more things. But have you noticed that Photoshop don’t provide support to .ico (Windows Icon) files. You can’t open them or create them.

.ico files, though less used but are important in certain circumstances like creating favicon image for websites and windows icon.

So just to make your summer a bit cooler, here is a cool plug-in for opening, creating and saving .ico files in Adobe Photoshop.

1. First download plugin for .ico support in Photoshop.

2. Extract the downloaded zipped file and see the ‘ICOFormat.8bi’ file inside the extracted folder.

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3. Copy and paste the file inside Adobe\Photoshop 7.0\Plug-Ins\File Formats. The default absolute path should be C:\Program Files\Adobe\Photoshop 7.0\Plug-Ins\File Formats.

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4. Now open Photoshop, or restart if already open. Your Photoshop should now start supporting .ico files. To confirm, go to Help>About Plug-Ins and see the ‘ICO(Windows Icon)’ listed there.

5. One thing to note here is that icon files can have a maximum size of 256 x 256pixel. So keep all images below these mark otherwise you cannot open, create or save any file with .ico extension.

Here is how I created my simple .ico file,

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click to expand

As an alternative, you can use online services like Pic to Icon Converter to convert any file to .ico. But these services are only for conversion, not for generating/designing .ico images.