icoutils - Introduction

The icoutils are a set of command-line programs for extracting and converting images in Microsoft Windows(R) icon and cursor files. These files usually have the extension .ico or .cur, but they can also be embedded in executables and libraries (.dll-files).

The icotool program converts icon and cursor files into a set of PNG images. (Each icon/cursor file may contain multiple images, usually of different sizes and with different number of colors.) Icotool can also create icon/cursor files from PNG images.

The wrestool program can extract both icons and cursors from 32-bit ("PE") and 16-bit ("NE") executables and libraries. It writes .ico and .cur files that can be used on Windows(R) operating systems as well. Other types of embedded resourced can be extracted, however only in raw form - icons and cursors require additional conversion before they can be saved as icon and cursor files.

The extresso script automates the tasks of extracting and converting icons. This is done with the help of of special resource scripts. The purpose of these scripts are to give names to the icons in the executables and libraries.

The icoutils were designed to compile and run on modern POSIX compatible systems such as Linux.

Windows is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and other countries.


Release history and list of changes for icoutils can be found in the NEWS file in the source code. This file is also available online:


The latest version of icoutils is 0.32.3, which was released on 2018-03-07:

These files, as well as older versions, are available in the icoutils file area.

Other Links

icoutils is mentioned on the following pages:

Copyright and License

The icoutils are copyright (C) 1998 Oskar Liljeblad.

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program. If not, see http://www.gnu.org/licenses/.

The source code of this project may contain files from other projects, and files generated by other projects, including:

Such files are licensed under the terms of the GNU General Public License or a license compatible with the GNU GPL (as listed on http://www.gnu.org/licenses/license-list.html). See each file for copyright details.


The following programs are required to build icoutils:

The following libraries are required to run icoutils:

The following programs and libraries are required to run the extresso and genresscript programs which are optional:


The icoutils programs use GNU Autoconf and GNU Automake. This means you usually just have to do


to compile the program. If you want to install the necessary files, run the following as as root:

make install

For more information regarding configure and make, see the INSTALL document.


See the manual pages or the documentation in the doc subdirectory of the source code tarball.


Web site and file area for microdc is hosted on Savannah:



The current maintainer of icoutils and this document, Frank Richter, can be reached via email:


Please send bug reports, suggestions, ideas or comments in general to me.

Original Author

icoutils was originally created by Oskar Liljeblad.

Known Bugs