Hi Glenn,

This answer has nothing to do with gimp, but as the author of the
GtkImageViewer widget who has dealt with a similar problem - the
display of 600MB pbm images - I thought I would tell you about my

The solution only works for uncompressed images.  I did not load the
whole image into memory at all, but used the view_changed signal
callback of the GtkImageViewer for fetching a rectangle of data from
the disk which is then immediately displayed. Zoomed out data was
created on the fly as well by reading from the disk and downscaling in
one go.

Even smooth scrolling worked surprisingly fast. There is a small delay
as the disk is accessed, but it is a lot less annoying then the
swapping and paging that will take place if you try to read the whole
image at once into memory.

Hope this helps. If you want to hear more about this solution, perhaps
we should move the discussion to gtk-app or privately, as it has
nothing to do with gimp.

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