GIMP Select Tool Not Working – A Professional Guide

Using GIMP’s Select tool is a lot like Photoshop’s Magic Wand. It’s a mainstay in most people’s GIMP toolkits because it’s flexible and valuable. It lets you make complicated selections with many different areas, pick any part of an image, and apply effects or transitions to just that part. Recently, GIMP has been facing many glitches in the selection tools. It can be very annoying when the “GIMP select tool not working.” Don’t worry; we’ll help you out.

This article will talk about the selection tool in GIMP, as well as common problems and how to fix them. Then let’s start right away!


Functions of The Selection Tools

With the help of selection tools, you can cut out the part of an image you want to change.

When you make a choice, your changes will only affect that area. It is essential when making different forms and when choosing what to photograph.

Make sure to validate each decision by comparing it to the current layer. Using layers, you can split your image into many different parts.

Find out how to use the different filters and ways to sort the results. The tools for making choices depend on the situation. If you use the correct tool, you can save time.

Types of Selection Tools

The selection tools in GIMP are a must-have for editing specific parts of an image. These four kinds of tools for choice-making include:

1. Select Tool for a Rectangle

Use the Rectangle Select Tool to make a quick and easy choice. To choose a rectangular area of a picture, click and drag.

2. The Ellipse Selection Tool

The Ellipse Select Tool lets you choose a round or elliptical shape like the Rectangle Select Tool enables you to choose a rectangle.

3. Free to-Choose Tool

With the Free Select Tool, which takes a bit more work, you can make a unique selection area by clicking and dragging.

4. Fuzzy Choose Tool

The Fuzzy Select Tool is the most advanced of the selection tools because it lets you choose an area of an image based on similar colors.

Choose the tool you want to use from the toolbox, then click and drag on the image to select an area. Choose the option from the Select menu or press Ctrl+D (Windows/Linux) or Command+D (Mac OS X) (Mac) to deselect. When using selection tools, it’s important to remember that you can both add to and take away from your choices. From the choices you’ve already made, you can create new images. From the File>New menu, you can choose the size and height of the new image. After that, you can make changes to certain parts of the new image by using selections and pressing Ctrl+V (Windows/Linux) or Command+V (Mac OS X) (Mac).

How to Fix The “GIMP Select Tool Not Working?”

Many things can go wrong with a GIMP selection tool. If you have some experience with GIMP, you can try the following tips to rule out some of the most likely causes.

Activate and display the correct layer

If you know about layers and your image has more than one, you can toggle between them in the Layers Dialog.

Choose the layer you want to change in the Layers dialog and turn it on. Click the area to the left of a hidden layer’s thumbnail to make it appear. It will show a small icon of an eye.

Validate Your Selections

When you select a region of an image, it limits GIMP’s editing tools to that area. So, if you make a choice and then try to use a tool outside that choice, you won’t be able to.

Maybe you accidentally chose something so small that you didn’t even notice the swarm of ants around it.
Check the tool’s settings.

The solution may be as simple as ensuring the selection tool’s opacity is not 0 in the “Tool Options Dialog.” Please ensure the tool’s opacity isn’t set to zero so you can make all of its changes (or very low). You can increase The tool’s opacity by setting it to 100%. The tool’s clarity needs to be clarified; it needs to be more precise if it does its job.

Although that may not be the whole story, when this occurs, a notification pops up whenever you move your mouse over the image at the bottom of the Main Window. If you read it, you’ll understand why the tool won’t work until you’ve completed those crucial measures.

Verify the editable area.

Use the “File” menu option to create a new image in GIMP or import one from your camera.” If you try to use a tool on an image’s background, the “Selection” function in GIMP doesn’t work.

Update GIMP

The selection tool in GIMP 2.8 should function correctly. But because of a bug, the selection tool in older versions of GIMP may act strangely. First, make sure you’re using the most recent version of GIMP.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a way in the GIMP to clear a selection?

In GIMP, pressing Ctrl + Shift + A is a quick way to run the Select None command, which is shorthand for deselecting (removing the selection). You can, most of the time, press the Shift key instead of a keyboard shortcut to undo what it did.

Where can I find instructions for fixing the rectangle selection in GIMP?

If this is your very first time selecting, you can make it square-shaped by holding Shift while you make it, then toggling the Fixed option.

What might be stopping my quick-selection tool from working?

If Photoshop’s quick selection tool isn’t working, you have a few options. Click on the tool in the toolbar to make sure it is working. If not, click on the icon to try out the tool. You could reset the tool’s settings if that’s the case.


GIMP is, without a doubt, a top-tier graphic editor. The “GIMP select tool not working” message can be extremely annoying if you’re a freelancer. We have thoroughly described the issue and its solutions to address all of the issues caused by the selection tool. We hope this article will solve the problem you’ve been having with the all selection tool.

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