DjVu, pronounced "deja vu," is an advanced image compression technology that simplifies the difficult process of scanning and digitizing paper documents in a format that captures enough detail to be useful but in files small enough to distribute online. Developed by AT&T Labs in 1996, it's since been advanced by an open-source forum of the same name. It's gaining in popularity since it promises to make available tons of books, magazines, and other important stuff that otherwise would come in files much too large to be hosted by anyone but the likes of NASA.
One of the free DjVu viewers on the scene is WinDjVu 1.0.3, which decodes DjVu files in all versions of Windows from 98 to 7. It's like all utilities should be but rarely are: fast, compact, competent, and a bit elegant, considering how much it packs into a 3.29MB image viewer. It has a tabbed, browser-like interface with a typical Windows toolbar and a scrolling side panel displaying file thumbnails. The top tabs function like browser windows, displaying selections, while side tabs access functions like Search Results and Bookmarks. A minimalist Help file links to considerable online documentation. Some printing options round out the package. You have to see DjVu images to appreciate them, but you'll be seeing more of them soon, so you might as well be ready.
WinDjVu is freeware. It installs and uninstalls easily. But with DjVu files sure to proliferate online, chances are you'll have plenty of use for it.
From Andrew Zhezherun:
WinDjView is a fast, compact and powerful DjVu viewer for Windows with continuous scrolling and advanced printing options. It uses the free DjVuLibre library to decode DjVu documents. DjVu is a web-centric format and software platform for distributing documents and images.
What's new in this version:
Version 2.1 adds restore last open tabs on startup feature.
Very simple and easy to use. I'm not particularly savvy about software, but I had no problem using this straight away.
The other user who had problems with the browser redirect and adware did not read the download instructions correctly. The browser/adware options are part of the CNET downloading options, *not* part of the software itself. If you use the direct download link and option, you will not have this problem.
Upon instillation(I declined to install the two extra programs the installer offered) my browser(s) reset with a new home page and a couple extensions added without my permission. Although not difficult to undue, it was unwanted. Running a scan to be sure nothing else came in unnoticed.
Works like a .pdf viewer except for DJVU files. Very happy with functionality.
None so far.
I didn't want to install a DJVU "browser" just to view DJVU files. Then I found the WinDJView on download.cnet.com. This viewer works great either from my Firefox brower or viewing a saved DJVU file from Explorer. Only had one review on download.cnet so made it a point to post my positive review. Good program!