Software to read comic books in a variety of file formats
Windows XP / Windows 2003 / Windows 7 / Windows Vista / Windows 8
ComicRack is a viewer and utility for reading and handling comic books in online or digital formats. The reader is a direct response to the innumerable comic companies and individual artists who are releasing work online through websites and other Internet channels. ComicRack is a free program supported by donations. It does require the latest version of the Microsoft dot-Net framework to run correctly. Users who are new to ComicRack and e-comics will be happy to see there is a 17-page quick-startup manual included with the reader in comic book format. A longer and more complete manual is also available online for power users.
The display and interface for ComicRack is designed to be simple to use so that reading e-comics is a seamless process. A main viewing panel shows the actual comic being read. There is a file browser in the lower left corner that makes it easy to move through a large collection of comics across multiple directories. A wide panel next to the browser lists all of the pages or chapters in the current comic book. The panel shows a variety of different statistics for each page, from the size in kilobytes to whether the image has been rotated or changed.
Viewing and navigating comics can be done in a number of ways through ComicRack. Users can look at comics through the default interface with the sidebar showing. It is possible to enter full-screen mode where user interface elements are completely hidden. Navigating through a comic book can be done with the scroll wheel on a mouse or with shortcuts on the keyboard. It is actually possible to move through and read an entire comic in the application without ever seeing the user interface.
ComicRack includes a number of organizational tools. Comics can be arranged and sorted into different directories through the program. A five-tab option panel allows users to enter a wide range of metadata information, from genres and notes to artists and series names. There is even an option to rate individual comics or pages. All of the information that can be entered is easily searchable directly from a box on the main interface. Additionally, users can set bookmarks and favorites that link directly into a comic book. This allows readers to jump right back into the story at a later date.
ComicRack includes some networking and social media features. The program can be used to explore and download web-based comics. It can be used partially as a portal to explore new online comics. Users of ComicRack are able to share collections of comics or lists of comics seamlessly through the Internet. It is even possible to export or save comics to other popular formats for sharing. ComicRack is a very detailed and useful program for anyone who enjoys reading comics. The core program can currently be extended with a scripting language and plug-ins.