Icon styles that include the ICO icon format (8-bit/XP/Vista)

Details: ICO is a classic icon format as old as Windows itself. Created by Microsoft, ICO icons are an essential resource for Windows developers and fundamental to icon companies such as ours. While there are many variants of the ICO format, our icon sets make use of the XP and Vista ICO encodings. We also provide 8-bit versions to ensure backward compatibility with older development tools such as VB 6.0. This allows for quality comparable to PNG with the additional benefit of multi-size integration. Vista Icons are merely an extension of the original WinXP ICO, supporting larger thumbnails and built-in PNG compression to reduce overall file sizes.

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The platform I use doesn't support ICO icons; can I still use your images?
Yes, absolutely. The ICOs we provide are solely for Windows Development. Our bitmapped icon packs also include multi-OS and web-friendly extensions such as GIF and PNG. Pick any of the styles above to see a complete list of sizes and formats.

What are the pros/cons of having multiple sizes integrated into a single icon (ICO)?
The most prominent benefit would be the ability to toggle among sizes without having to swap out files. This is a commonly used technique in scenarios where multiple views are supported (i.e. thumbnail vs. detail view). In these cases, different size thumbnails (i.e. icons) are often displayed, requiring the presence of 2 or more resolutions. The new RibbonBar also adapted this philosophy, rendering an appropriate image size depending on the state and size of the current window dialog (i.e. whether it's maximized, minimized, small, big, etc.).

The only disadvantage to ICO icons would be an increased file size, although this could be circumvented by deleting any additional resolutions that are not being used by the application and/or interface control.

I'm using a RibbonBar control; which of your products do you recommend?
It is really just a matter of personal preference. Every product line is designed with a unique color scheme and perspective suited for an array of application styles. All of our bitmapped families (i.e. Office, Vista, XP Icons, etc.) come with multi-size ICOs, so as far as the RibbonBar is concerned, you will have everything you need for proper implementation.

If you are having a hard time deciding which products to purchase, we recommend downloading the samples we provide and inserting them into your interface to see what works best. If you are familiar with Photoshop you might also consider taking a screenshot and overlapping the sample images to get faster results. This would also enable you to toggle among multiple PSD layers (or document windows) to compare the styles side-by-side.

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