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March 8, 2010


Desktop QR Code Reader

What are QR Codes?:
A QR code is a lot like a barcode you see on most products. QR codes are a great way to share information like websites and contact info. They can be scanned using your camera equipped device and a proper QR code processing app (For Android, I use the Barcode Scanner App, and on iPhone I use QR Reader for iPhone.) Once the code is scanned and processed, it takes you directly to the URL on your device, or shows you whatever else was encoded in the QR code. I love the ease ability of QR codes, just a quick scan, and the content is on your device. For Example, there is a great plug-in for Google Chrome called QR-Code Tag (For Firefox there’s Mobile Barcode) which lets you generate a QR code for the site you are currently viewing. This is super handy if your reading an article, and need to take it on the go. So, what about reading a QR code from your phone to your desktop computer? Well, surprisingly that wasn’t as easy. I spent some time digging around the internet, and could not find a good cross-platform application for reading QR codes onto your desktop computer. The only thing I found that was somewhat close, was an AS3 library. At that time, the only thing using the library was embedded on a web page… which isn’t the most ideal solution if your wanting to just scan something quickly. So, I took the initiative to implement the library into an Adobe AIR app that can be run on basically any system. I call it QRreader. Download it HERE

Note: I have moved all the info and download links for QRreader to

Read more from AIR app, Android, AS3
355 Comments Post a comment
  1. Dec 2 2011

    Thanks! It installed and works on my XP machine. By the way, I use the same WP Theme on my blog but I combined it with Sliding Doors.

  2. rara
    Nov 29 2011

    nice but
    need more sensitif

  3. Michael Dowling
    Nov 16 2011

    Go to Google images and search QRcode.It works fine with the images Google finds.

  4. Nov 15 2011

    I installed QR reader on Windows 7 64 bits and it worked right away. My question is: sometimes it does not recognize the qr code at all. Or the red corners light up for only a short moment and nothing happens. I tried printed qr codes and qr codes in pictures on my monitor (camera in my laptop). Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  5. Ball
    Nov 2 2011

    Mac users should use this with CamTwist. You can easily scan anything (like what your mouse is pointing at) and do things like gamma adjust when the light conditions aren’t right.

  6. David
    Nov 1 2011

    Worked first time for me on Dell XPS M1530 running 32 bit Vista.
    I used the built in webcam.
    Must try it using a USB web cam to see if it is easier to scan.

    One thing would be good – if you could read a QR code from the clipboard.
    Quite a few web pages include a QR code an an image and it would be nice to copy&paste into the decoding app.



  7. terry
    Oct 25 2011

    Any chance we can get the full air code? I’d like to incorporate something similar into a project, and the linked source code in the post isn’t really much source code at all.

  8. Oct 24 2011

    Thanks for this. I managed to get it working once I changed the settings to open URLs automatically. I’m using 64bit Windows.

  9. Oct 24 2011


    Great app, I testted on Win7 (64-bit), hope it works well on OS X 10.7 :)

    I have one problem – URLs wont open automatically, but, also, when URL read it is shown within window but onClick it wont open in browser…???

    Thank you,

  10. Roman
    Oct 19 2011

    Díky moc jste mi pomohly :) už mi jdou číst QR kódy a to mam Windows 7 a šlape to. (ten QR kód se musí dát tak aby strany qr kodu nebyly zšikmené musejí mít pravý úhel)

  11. Avi
    Oct 11 2011

    Any chance of getting the full air project? i could learn alot from it. Thanks!

  12. Oct 11 2011

    I Love the QR desk top reader

  13. Mac Sullivan
    Oct 9 2011

    I am wondering if a person can use this software to scan with a camera that is linked to the pc via the internet. Example: My “PC webcam” I guess you could call it, is an iPod Touch gen 4 with an app that broadcasts the video over an IP address through the internet. In order to see the video coming from the iPod, you have to open Firefox and go to “″. Can I make this work with this software (it’s the only webcam I have…)?

  14. Oct 3 2011

    Hi guys, nice to see all good feedback about QR code article. We have recently launched a new dynamic QR code tool for your website or blog. Check out Your users will ove it for sure.


  15. Moose
    Oct 1 2011

    I had a lot of trouble getting a code to scan last evening when I downloaded this program. In fact, I couldn’t do it. It wouldn’t beep, and opened a blank window. But this morning I reopened the program and tried again, and I think with the room being all lit up by the daylight it worked fine.

  16. Dakota Carlson
    Sep 26 2011

    Is it possible to take a picture of the QR code on a movie poster in a theatre with a regular digital camera and then upload it to one of the free readers to read the code?

  17. Sep 26 2011

    Hm, the interpretation library used appears to have its difficulties with QR Code colours other than black, as they are becoming fashionable recently – even if the provided contrast is still quite high, like e.g. with a dark red.

  18. Sep 23 2011

    Is there a way to have this windows always on top on the desktop ?

  19. W orldwide Wanderer
    Sep 22 2011

    I have given up on this after two hours, in a well-lit room, trying to hold a QR code steady in front of my webcam and hoping against hope that the little black square box next to my webcam actually bursts into life!

    I am an old person nowadays (but I still know what I’m doing on a computer), so time wasted in waiting for this reader to finally work is time I can ill afford to lose.

    Perhaps somebody could write a bit more info on how to make this thing work would benefit many, I am sure. As for me, I’m back off to Google to see if I can try and get a reader for my (also) ageing Nokia!

  20. Sep 20 2011

    Cant seem to read smaller than 1 inch QR Codes. Any suggestion on megapixels etc for webcams that are required to read smaller QR Codes?

  21. Phil
    Sep 16 2011

    Works great on win7 you have to adjust your web camera take it off of face tracking and adjust the pan zoom. I adjusted it alway down to the minus. I used Kaywa QR-Code Generator and made my own business card cool.

  22. Mike
    Sep 14 2011

    Work on Win7 64bit.

    BUT – it takes FOREVER (2 seconds) to scan and decode, must be held flat and steady, and evenly lit. My cellphone is way too heavy for the amount of time it takes to scan.

  23. a
    Sep 13 2011

    mc book air MacOS 10.7; doesn’t work fast; takes over 5 s to scan; insensitive under medium light conditions; must be bright lighting to work. needs further development; good start though…

  24. Denise
    Sep 12 2011

    awesome, thanks!

  25. Mel
    Sep 8 2011

    This is a great app! Just wondering if it’s possible to view a history of scanned QR codes? And does the history have a timestamp?


  26. Aug 21 2011

    Your webcam must be set to normal view NOT mirrored.
    This suxs be cause most people run in mirrored mode.

    I have this same issue in qmarks.

    Until these Devs put an option to disable or invert mirrored mode, it will be an issue.

  27. renesme
    Aug 20 2011

    arggghhhh i cant find a qr scanner 4 me comp help me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  28. Aug 18 2011

    I can get the webcam to read the code and ‘bleep’ but it’s not doing anything with the info! (just a string of characters not recognisable as a url) Any ideas what I’m doing wrong?

  29. Aug 17 2011

    Well that was painless. Needed this, found you. Flawless victory. My thanks.

  30. Giraff
    Aug 16 2011

    Hi..this application is quite good bt it generates the same problem which are often to seen in the QR code takes time to read..need to rotate in many angles nd believe me at one point I got frustrated..just read one QR code which came with QR code wiki article..failed to read the QR which I generated nd it need to expand for the other formats in short basic problem of taking time to read and angle with respect to distance remains unsolved with this application to..need to figure out the solution for those object..can any reader will be able to read QR code from the picture taken by web-cam..need to put light on its possibility…ur replies are most welcome..let’s discuss..probably we can fix the problem exists in this application :)

  31. Alien Ninja
    Aug 10 2011

    It’s okay, but it sucks in all light levels. It really needs to be more developed for different light situations, oh well, good job….I guess. D:

  32. Isabel
    Aug 9 2011

    Hello, I have a big doubt I would like you to help me to solve! I want to change the content, the link of one of my qr codes but I made it static through this website
    Now my question is, is there any chance to change a qr static code into one able to be changed? Thank you very much! I would really appreciate your help because I’m in an urgency and I’m desperate.
    Thank you so much!

  33. SueQue
    Aug 8 2011

    This might be a worthy link to add – It’s a link to “The Hidden Identity of QR Codes from SchoolArts magazine Aug/Sept. 2011. It includes some worthy links (including this one.)

  34. Aug 6 2011

    Have you thought about having a minimize feature. Or something so I don’t have to look at my ugly mug while the program is running?

    please let me know. If you do not have plans for this…I could also contribute…but I think the code is read only at this point.


  35. Aug 2 2011

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  36. Ian Ruff
    Aug 1 2011

    I am a teacher, but not a programmer. I am looking for a way to use QR codes for attendance tracking. Does anyone know how to get the result (which works fine for me by the way with a new Powerbook 17″) into a database (like filemaker or something similar)?

  37. Jul 31 2011

    Doesn’t work for me on Win 7 64bit either, like others. Built in webcam works fine, app loads and activates camera but after that it just doesn’t read anything. One thing I noticed, not sure if it’s related or not, but the image in the camera window is reversed. Perhaps the app needs to flip this around.

  38. KevT
    Jul 9 2011

    I does work on Mac Pro iSight. you just have to make sure you get the QR to register red for 2 seconds to decode….its a bit tricky

  39. Jul 7 2011

    Needed something to test my QR codes without getting a smartphone. This works great! Thank you!

  40. Judi Barber
    Jun 30 2011

    Is there a way to make this enter the the QR info into wherever the cursor happens to be?

  41. Jun 26 2011

    Um.. Adobe AIR? You do realise that Adobe no longer supports that on Linux?

  42. deathstalker
    Jun 25 2011

    if anyone has trouble i found this it reads bar codes and qr codes

  43. Jonathan
    Jun 23 2011

    Using Mac OSX 10.6.7 ; most recent version of Adobe Air. White brackets turn red & nothing happens.

  44. Jun 22 2011

    Great app!

  45. Oneoar
    Jun 21 2011

    Works great! I install on XP Pro. Be sure to mention that the little gear in the upper left corner needs to be clicked and the “Open URLS automatically” checkbox needs to be checked for truly complete function.

  46. dr pepper
    Jun 21 2011

    It doesn’t work for me either. The error message seems to pin it on Adobe Air. I think it might be becuase i have the 64 bit Windows 7 and Air for Windows is only 32 bits.

  47. Nathan
    Jun 17 2011

    White brackets turn red, but nothing happens.

  48. Pete
    Jun 16 2011

    Excuse my stupidity, but once I’ve downloaded and extracted the Qreader files, how do I run it?
    (using Linux Mint)

  49. liam
    Jun 16 2011

    Yep. Works fine on mine with Windows 7 :)

  50. Jun 15 2011

    Have anyone tried using windows 7? I have been trying the software for 1 hour and still unsuccessful to read qr code … :-(

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