Microsoft Photodraw - does anyone use it any more?

I have Photodraw 2000 on my computer from several years ago - I copied it onto my newer computer and I use it all the time to add text, borders or effects and to correct old photos or erase backgrounds.  I use my photos for various purposes, for teaching and family use, so it's good to be able to do lots of things with the photos in just one simple program

I love Photodraw- it has so many uses and is easy to use. I never got the hang of using layers as in (which I've tried ) and Photoshop (which seems so expensive and complex).

Does anyone else still use Photodraw or am I hanging on to a dinosaur here?

Picture of Microsoft Photodraw - does anyone use it any more?
NarniaNitro1 month ago

I use Photodraw all the time when I'm working on web sites. It amazes me that a piece of 15-year-old software can still hold such value, and it pains me that Microsoft decided not to continue development on it. I also have copies of Gimp and Inkscape and on my computer, but Photodraw is really my go-to program for ease of use. I can only imagine the features that would have been added by now had Microsoft not abandoned ship.

Puzzledd (author)  NarniaNitro1 month ago
Yes, I agree... but it would probably be bloated beyond recognition and have problems and be too complicated to use... my only beef now is having to make photos less than 2500 pixels on long side. I'm starting to use Photoscape more for editing (and for colouring/removing background) but I keep going back to Photodraw for its elegant simplicity (even using it to 'stack' photos and erase bit of 'layers').
Puzzledd (author) 7 months ago

Hi Vickie,

I installed Photodraw on my new Windows 8 computer (which I'm still taming - I use the old desktop and only a few of the Metro features). Photodraw still works OK but it still asks me to insert Disc 2 at various times, which I ignore (I painstakingly copied all the 'extra' files from the disc into textures etc on my computer). Still can't get 3D etc. Interesting that there is a later version- I'll have to check it out! Do you still have your installation discs from before? I've backed up mine online so if you can't get a copy from MS (I don't think they sell it any more), they may be happy for you to access my backups.

It does work with 8.1? I was told that you couldn't save your work with it on 8.1

do you have a copy of 2000 photo draw..

Yes, all three discs.

how much are you asking for the copy of the set

I'm having a new computer delivered Wednesday with Windows 8.1. If I can't install them in my new computer I will sell the set for $65.00 and I will ship it free.

Puzzledd (author)  tricountypress2 months ago

I haven't had any problems at all saving with Windows 8.1... this is what I did on PhotoDraw 2000 yesterday:

Simple Solution to Short Sheets_sd.jpg

leccoi2 months ago

googd very !!

leccoi2 months ago

googd very !!

I would love a free copy if someone has it...I used it for years, loaned out my office set to someone that never returned it. If someone has the disk or can send a zip file I would be forever greatfull

Puzzledd (author)  mark.s.jacobson2 months ago

What a pain! It's always worth backing up CDs; I keep a copy online on case I lose my CDs and my computer crashes (don't trust hard drives). I've sent you a private message...

anyone want to give it out for free as it has been discontinued? SHARE IT WITH THE WORLD! <3

Puzzledd (author)  MrBlackManMagic2 months ago

I don't know what the legalities are of giving it away for free; I'd be happy to share if MS allowed it.....

IvanS53 months ago


Puzzledd (author)  IvanS53 months ago
Hi Ivan, I'm still using my disks - I wouldn't be without Photodraw; it's the first thing I install when I get a new computer ;)
I think you can get the installation disks on eBay sometimes. Worth a look
cfiri7 months ago

i bought 3 years ago from ebay the last original ligal copy of photo draw 200 v 2

i am an expert in it you can ask me any question on my mail

cfir winehouse


I did find on Microsoft that they made a newer version Spoke to Microsoft and they said there are free downloads and they are compatible with Windows 8. They recommend a site called Softonic and to go to to find them. This is from a Microsoft Tech. I went there but found a converter but not the download yet. If you find it please post please.

I LOVE Photodraw. I just upgraded to Windows 8 (which I hate). Does anyone know if I can get it for Windows 8 and how please? It may be a dinosaur but it's an awesome program. I have saved many many old family photos with it. I'm hanging on to my 2000 PC just so I can use this program. Please tell me I can get it for Windows 8.

Help me guys. If you've used it you love it.

This was one of the best time saver programs ever, so simple, no brainer and beat the rest hands down. I got it brand new when it came out and am still using it at the moment on a 64 bit Windows 7 machine, no idea if it works on Win 8.
I'm still using Photodraw, and would like a new Windows 7 compatable version. I'm so grateful for the suggestions, and will check them out! Jenny
Wow, can you get it for free online? It seems like a very practical application. I have not heard of it until now!
Puzzledd (author)  Jessie Marie2 years ago
Jessie, it isn't a free program; it used to be available with MS Office but the last time was brought out was in 2000, so it's quite outdated (hasn't been supported for years so it doesn't work fully on later operating systems such as Vista & Windows 7).
It's still easy to use for a range of tasks, but of course it's not as powerful as Photoshop etc.

The GIMP and Photoscape are alternative free programs that can be used to edit/add to photos, and SVG-Edit, Inkscape  & are free drawing programs; together, these free programs will do more than PhotoDraw, but I still find it a quick and easy first stop.
nobro2 years ago
Hello, can anyone please help me! I've been using Photo Draw 2000 V2 to do some vector graphics and my most recent work will not open due to the size of the file (almost 18MB). I hate to lose the three days of work that I've invested in this project.

I have a PC running Vista Ultimate Service Pack 2, with a AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 4200+ 2.21 Ghz, 18.0 GB of RAM and a 32 bit OS.

Is there any way to save my project file?

I've tried every suggestion that I've stumbled upon, thus far, online regarding saving it to a jpg file but each time that try to open it the file eats up all of the available memory on one of my two processors, as it tries to render the file and then just sends me an error message. Do I need even more RAM? A vastly faster processor?

Even though I have the Affinity set for both processors, when trying to open the file I notice that it uses the memory of only one of the two processors. I tried to increase the priority. That didn't work. I tried increasing the Virtual Memory for each of my two hard drives, since the program is on one drive and the image is stored on the other drive. That didn't work either.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks!

Puzzledd (author)  nobro2 years ago
Hi Nobro,
I sympathise with your plight, but I didn't even know PhotoDraw would work with large files (it won't open photos larger than 2500px). Is there any way you can re-size your work in an online program, or has it been saved as a .mix file?
I wish I could help but it's way over my head... hope you can find someone who may be able to offer a solution!
elaw1012 years ago
These are absolutely great!
Puzzledd (author) 2 years ago
There are some other good drawing/photo processing programs around that are free:  I do use
  • as well (free program) for clipart-style pics if I need to to re-colour sections of pictures or create transparent sections from JPEG images;
  • Photoscape (also free) has some good features for photo processing, cropping, frames etc and you don't have to re-size your photos to less than 2500px;
  • SVG-Edit/Online Paint (also free - see my notes HERE) will draw vector images so is good for smooth curves and drawings that you can re-size,
but Photodraw is a quick, easy, and versatile program. I often find I use it with or SVG-Edit to get the effects I want, especially for clipart-style drawings.
mwade42 years ago
I use it everyday and have for over 10 years. I have to use CCS at times but still prefer and love my photodraw. Graphic Manipulation is just so much faster and easier and takes less time. I love, love, love it!
Puzzledd (author)  mwade42 years ago
Yes, I think you've put your finger on the main thing: easy and less time!
clewis212 years ago
Even though I purchased a "how-to" manual, I learned most things by trial and error and by using the help to look up each thing I wanted to try. I have photoshop, but don't really use it yet.
Puzzledd (author)  clewis212 years ago
I'm like you- I prefer to learn by trying out... manuals don't mean much to me till I actually do something. I find Photodraw so easy and I've been a bit lazzy about working with layers in other programs (always seems so complicated).
clewis212 years ago
I still use mine. That's how I made my grapic here. This is all my own artwork and photography, layered and manipulated.
jinxstarr4 years ago
I use PhotoDraw V2 all the time, have used (or I should say ..tried to use..) many
of the various draw this, draw that and either I am too dense or they are too difficult. But I have to admit that is most likely because when I first got a computer some years back, it came with PhotoDraw and that is what I learned on. I suspect once a person gets the knack of say...PhotoShop, it might be a lot easier to get rid of unwanted backgrounds like fences, people etc but I reckon
I'll just hang on to my old dinosaur. Woe will be me if I ever lose it because it is almost impossible to find.

Oh by the way, I do have a question. I have two versions MS2000 and MS2000V2.
They are very much the same...each one has a neat little "something" or other that I like better then the other. Is is all right to have two different versions installed on the same computer?

Puzzledd (author)  jinxstarr4 years ago
Oo, 2 versions...that sounds like fun! I suspect you're right about what you're used to is easiest, but why have more hassles that you need? I don't know much about computers, I'm afraid. I'm inclined to try things and let my computer tell me if it doesn't like them, so if your 2 versions are working OK, why not keep them?

I guess I'll have to update to Windows 7 soon. I heard that Photodraw didn't work properly with Vista and I had a few problems at first, but it seems OK now. I just hope it still works with 7 when I have to upgrade.

I wish Microsoft would re-introduce it and/or keep supporting it, but I guess Photoshop has the monopoly now. Maybe I'll have to bite the bullet one day and tackle it, but I'll keep having fun with Photodraw for now..I'm making a whole collection of "clipart" images with it. This is today's picture:
Rottweiler Pup sm 5 cm.gif
Hi Puzzledd, I created a logo for my small biz some time ago in photodraw. Since that time I have gone through several computers, and now I have this logo in mix format that I can no longer use. Rather than go through the attic to find and install PD, which may no longer even work according to what I'm reading, would you be able to convert the file to a png for me? I'd be happy to pay something to have my logo back.
Puzzledd (author)  bobishkindaguy2 years ago
Hi bobishkindofguy,

I'd be very happy to convert your logo to .png for you. I've tested sending a .mix file from my Yahoo account to my husband's, and it went fine as an attachment.

If you like to email me your .mix file to I'll send you back the .png version.

Thanks for the offer of payment- if the file conversion works and it proves useful to you, you may like to make a small donation to support my website, - any contribution is appreciated, as I pay for the site myself;)


Cathy (Puzzledd)

bruckner2 years ago
I've been using Photodraw V2 since it first came out. I love it but have been having problems with my program and it started before I switched to Windwos 7. (was using Windows XP) I'm wondering if the problem started when I installed the last two CD's in the set entitled Photodraw Content and Photodraw Clip Gallery Content. My program will not open large jpegs,gifs or pngs but has no problem with tifs! It will however open low res jpegs and gifs. It really limits what you can do with the program!
I've tried finding the folder the CD's installed into but can't. I've tried reinstalling the program but everything comes back the same. I tried asking a MS tech but he didn't seem mto have a clue as to what I was talking about. Any ideas? I can't be the first person this has happened to?
helenl bruckner2 years ago
I have been using Photodraw v2 since it was released, and find it brilliant for my needs. However, I damaged my laptop, and can't find the original discs. Can't find any way to download it. help???
Puzzledd (author)  bruckner2 years ago
That's interesting about Tif files! I use JPEG usually and re-size in MS Picture manager (just reduce the % untill it show just under 2500 pixels), then it works fine- and this is big enough for most uses.
Bummer that it's not working for you now! I installed all discs when I changed to Vista and it worked fine but I think it didn't recognise the 2nd and 3rd disc (wouldn't do 3D).
The tech at work installed Photodraw back on when he installed Windows 7- and he only used the fisrt CD. It still seems to work fine, but I prob. can't do the 3D stuff.
It took me ages to find the folder the CD installed into so that I could get PhotoDraw into my drop-dpwn menu for opening picture files.
I'm just heading off out now but I'll have a hunt when I get home and see if I can find where it is- maybe then you can try deleting some of the files....
I don't know anyone who uses the program any more (and our tech guy at work is a Mac enthusiast so not up with MS). What kind of problems are you having? Maybe someone out there can help;)
I can work around the jpg problem (only use jpgs when I need a small file) but when I need a transparent background like gif or png then I have to revert to another program (Photoshop but I don't know it very well). PhotoDraw worked just fine when I first loaded it on my Windows 7 computer but since it's having the same problem of not recognizing jpgs now as it did on Windows XP, I can't help but think it has something to do with those extra files I installed. Is there a way to find and delete ALL the PhotoDraw files to do clean uninstall, then reinstall? I've heard of people doing that and getting rid of the errors.
Puzzledd (author)  bruckner2 years ago
I've found the file location on my computer- I couldn't find it in a search for PhotoDraw as the .exe file is PHOTODRW.EXE

I had to search for PhotoDrw, then I found the Photodraw folder in C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office

Maybe you could try deleting anything in the Plugins folder there to see if that helps. Mine is empty, and I have no problems with transparent backgrounds on gif or png files (remember that the default background is white, so your picture won't show up as transparent unless you move it off the background or change the background colour).

I can't do 3D text styles without the other discs but the other textures etc seem to work fine even when the program asks for them- I just hit 'Ignore'.

I don't know how to do a complete uninstall, but I guess you'd need to delete any files in the Photodraw folder.... worth a try before re-installing just Disc 1 .

Let me know how it goes!
Thanks for your response! I also posted the question to Microsoft Answers. Takes forever to get a response from them but I was told to download a program called Office Resource Kit and that it would completely remove PhotoDraw for me.............well so far, you can't find it once it's downloaded...once I did and clicked on it, nothing happens. Frustrating... so I'm waiting on another reply from the MS Answers Tech. I'll let you know what happens in case you ever need to unistall your PD.
Puzzledd (author)  bruckner2 years ago
Thanks, could be useful! Meantime, maybe try deleting the folder if it's still there when you uninstall....

I guess if you've looked up Microsoft Answers, you've read; there seem to be some helpful suggestions there (I've added my 2c worth)

Also re your JPEG problem, I found an answer suggetsing re-sizing "old"  JPEG files to 98% to open in a new installation of PhotoDraw...I seem to remember doing something like that when I changed to Vista, but have had no problems so far with 7.
Puzzledd (author)  Puzzledd2 years ago

Oh- yes, I saw your response to the question on the link above (it was on a 2nd page)...

other possible suggestions I've found in  various places:

1) For an "access denied" error, see if running setup as administrator (right-click and choose "Run as Administrator") helps

2) Someone suggested " it works fine if you add d3drm.dll to the install directory"

3) Another tip: it's always a good idea to create a System Restore point before installing software or updates….

 4)  try to install and run the program in compatibility mode.
Use the following steps:
1) Right click on the Program
2) Click on Properties
3) Click on Compatibility tab
4) Select 'Run this program in compatibility mode' and select Windows Vista or whatever operating system the program was running successfully.  

5) It's worth trying to just open your JPEG in MS Office Picture Manager and check that it's under 2500pixels in either dimension; at least, reduce to say 98% and/or re-save with a different name.... see if that works.

Good luck!

Puzzledd (author)  Puzzledd2 years ago
There's another good possible solution at - the most recent post has a suggestion for replacing corrupted a graphics filter file....
courtney8333 years ago
In my opinion this was and still is the best photographic / drawing program ever. Unfortunately I cannot download it on XP.

Since upgrading I have been without my trusty Photodraw and dont know what to do.I have tried various other programs but none of them can can hold a candle to Photodraw.

Anyone got any ideas
Puzzledd (author)  courtney8332 years ago
I just noticed when I googled MS PhotoDraw that there are several places to get a "free download" of PhotoDraw or even PhotoDraw 2 - don't know how secure some of the sites are, but if you can't get a copy anywhere else it may be worth a try as long as you can check for viruses etc.

I may need to upload a backup copy of my installation files in case I lose the CDs - send me a Private Message if you need a link to the files...;)

Puzzledd (author)  courtney8333 years ago
I've been using PhotoDraw V.2. on XP for years with few problems, if any. I just installed it with the original installation discs.

My hard drive was replaced the other day and our tech at work installed Windows 7 - and PhotoDraw V.2 (at my request) - so far, so good!

Do you have/know anyone with the installation discs? Even just the first disc or 2 seem to work with most features (just not the 3D effects, it seems - it asks me for Disc 3 for those).

Good luck- I hope you get it working!
MoonKnight3 years ago
wow it's beuatiful :D NIIIIIIICE
Puzzledd (author)  MoonKnight3 years ago
ilpug3 years ago
Wow. I thought I was the only one who ever used that. Sadly, it is no longer compatible with any of my working computers... such a great program for fast stuff, although I have gotten used to Photoshop.
Puzzledd (author)  ilpug3 years ago
What a shame.
I've used it on XP and Vista- now trying on Windows 7.
I'm being pressured to change to Mac but I'd still want Windows on it for my favourites like PhotoDraw!
Kiteman4 years ago
I've never heard of Photodraw, but I'm still using the 2002 release of Photoshop Elements...
Hisart Kiteman4 years ago
I've never heard of it either and I still use PSE2 circa 2002 as well because I don't need all the bells and whistles of PhotoShop. I got mine free when I bought my first Wacom (a Graphire 4x5). Before PSE2 I was using the MSPaint that comes with the Windows package. It was like finger painting with a brick!
Puzzledd (author)  Hisart4 years ago
I'm afraid you've lost me with the " Wacom Graphire 4x5"... I'm assuming it's a type of computer? And PSE2 a drawing program? Excuse my ignorance ;)

I love your analogy of "finger painting with a brick"! I have to admit I get frustrated with pixels going vertically or horizontally, and in set spaces. I have to keep my photo files large to work with the fine detail as I want.
Hisart Puzzledd4 years ago
The Wacom Graphire 4"x 5" is a small electronic drawing tablet that you use instead of a mouse.

PSE2 is PhotoShop Elements 2 which is a no frills version of PhotoShop.

I usually work on images that are about 6300x4500 pixels and 300dpi to get the detail I like.
Puzzledd (author)  Hisart4 years ago
Oh, thanks for the explanation. Is the Wacom Graphire good?

I bought a digital "Intellipen" that you use on paper, but I found it frustratingly inaccurate for drawing. I've seen drawing tablets, and they seem to be coming down in price.

It's probably easier (and cheaper) for me to draw with ink on paper, then scan the picture- I don't need it that often... but a drawing tablet sounds tempting.
Hisart Puzzledd4 years ago
The equivalent tablet that they make now is the Bamboo pen which starts at $69 and can be seen here.

It comes with Corel® Painter™ Essentials 4 instead of the PSE.

Puzzledd (author)  Hisart4 years ago
Thanks for the link- it looks really interesting. I've seen similar tablets here in Australia, but they've been very expensive. I'm inspired to get out my Intellipen and try working with that some more :)
Hisart Puzzledd4 years ago
I never heard of the Intellipen before you mentioned it, but from what I read about it on their site it looks like it does basically the same thing as a tablet.

I find that using a tablet and the pen allows me a WHOLE lot more control as I draw. If you are interested in doing more work on the computer I would recommend digging out the Intellipen and get working with it.

If you like using it then the next step would be the Bamboo pen.
Puzzledd (author)  Hisart4 years ago
That's a good idea. I'm no artist, I just wanted simple little pictures to put on worksheets for my students. Clipart can be very time-consuming to find and it's often quicker to do a little sketch...but in this digital age, that's not so simple.

I find it frustrating to try and draw curves or diagonals on a computer, and the lines don't always end up where I want. I must try the Intellipen again; maybe if I persist....
Hisart Puzzledd4 years ago
There is a learning curve with it just like any new tool, but a little practice overcomes it fairly quick. You could also do a quick sketch on paper and then use the Intellipen to trace it. Tape the paper to the table/desk and then have at it!
Puzzledd (author)  Hisart4 years ago
Thanks- I'll try that!
Hisart Puzzledd4 years ago
Let us know how it goes for you and if you have any questions let me know, I may have a good answer. ;D
Puzzledd (author)  Hisart4 years ago
OK, I'll try it out at the weekend :D
Puzzledd (author)  Kiteman4 years ago
Photodraw was part of Office 2000, so it cost me nothing ;) I don't know why they discontinued it - it's a great program for fun effects.

Maybe Photoshop became so popular that it took over, but are the new programs (and all their newer versions) really better, or just more bells and whistles... and more expensive?
My Photoshop was free - passed on to me by my dad, who had bought it for $5 whilst working in the Far East, when he came home he decided to upgrade.

Goodhart4 years ago
I still use paint now and then for the things that Gimp and Irfanview don't give me.
Puzzledd (author)  Goodhart4 years ago
I've tried, Paint, Gimp and Irfanview, and I use MS Picture Manager for basic editing... but keep coming back to good old Photodraw. Maybe I'm the only one left. Shame, though.
Oh I meant the "paint" that came with my windows package :-) It is very crude but sometimes that is what I need to "draw a quck box, or polygon".
Puzzledd (author)  Goodhart4 years ago
Ah. Sometimes simple is best, when it's all you need ;)
Indeed. Quick loading (it takes Gimp 4 times as long to just load up) and easy to use straight line drawing tools makes it ideal for simple things.
Puzzledd (author)  Goodhart4 years ago
Hmm.. I had another fiddle with paint. Fun for making a new image; shame it doesn't seem to be able to add filled shapes, text etc to an existing image and doesn't cut out shapes ( I tried to use it for making my own patches, but I gave up).

Thanks for the reminder, though, it's good for drawing with and, as you say, simple shapes etc :)
Most of my patches were, if you'll excuse the reference, patched together using Paint. The A icon gives you the TEXT ability (mine then puts it in the upper left corner and I have to go up and right click and drag it to where I want it). Filling a shape isn't easy no. If it is a drawn shape, and you use the selection tool to select that "space", you can "clear" the space and then fill it with the color of choice with the paintcan icon.

But yeah, it is only for quick and dirty changes (or when I have nothing else to use ;-)
Puzzledd (author)  Goodhart4 years ago
Haha, thanks. I tried the TEXT icon but it was greyed out when I had a photo and tried to add a caption; I guess I could have used it for the patches made with clipart, not photos.

I also got fussy and was determined to have rounded corners on my patches, but couldn't cut out the shape... so went back to my trusty Photodraw. The results are here. Fun, but fiddly ;)
That is weird...I just now downloaded a random photo, and used paint to put some text in it....I'll include it....
Puzzledd (author)  Goodhart4 years ago
Ohhh...wonder why mine won't do that? Hmm, I'll try again....

cool :)

young kookaburras in a gum tree text.jpg
craftyv4 years ago
Facinated; because your question reminds us about redundant or out dated systems. I have never used any of them and have no idea how to go about it. Imagine being so far behind and starting from scratch, how complex it is. We are not stupid but simply not learning step by step from a simple beginning, rather we are starting when it is all very complicated and technically developed.
I so wish I could "get it" but I don't. Wow. I feel better now.
Puzzledd (author)  craftyv4 years ago
I guess it depends what your needs and interests are. I didn't even know how to use a computer when Photodraw came out- got my first laptop in 2002 when I went back to "outside" work (after years of full-time parenting and volunteer work).

I guess I was the perfect example of an outdated system;) I had to teach myself all the basics on computer. I found some great computer jigsaw programs and started experimenting with images, then discovered that Photodraw was installed on my computer.

It has taken me a long time to find out all the techniques in the program, and it works fine for what I want. I guess I'm reluctant to invest more time and effort into newer programs, but I may have to when Photodraw will no longer work on new systems; still, so far so good!

Don't know what I'll do when I have to change to a Mac, though...
I tend to shy away from techy stuff because I find it so confusing. I will keep trying though. Thanks for your reply.
Puzzledd (author)  craftyv4 years ago
It depends on whether you need or really want to use tech things... I just did what the kids do, trying things out on the computer, pressing buttons to see what happened!

I got really keen when I discovered the computer jigsaws, and I wanted to see how much I could do with them. It helps to have people around with the same interest (in my case, kids who loved the jigsaws, so that spurred me on). It also helps to have a tech-minded person to guide you when you get stuck!

I knew I'd "come of age" when my 18-year-old son asked me to design his birthday invitations because I could "do it better" than him. Not that he was much good at computers, either, but he did learn about them at school.

Congrats on your 'ible- lovely clear photos, you are good at that! You even got your first 'ible featured! I'm waiting for your next one :)