I did have a look at Irfanview and though I agree it's a great looking program it's more a viewer and tweaker than any kind of database/cataloguer. (I may well grab it anyway)
I've been looking through the ACDsee site leo49 and I can't find what formats are covered. Nor does it really seem to offer anything more than Windows Explorer does in XP as far as cataloguing. Not that I'm being ungrateful, - I very much appreciate the suggestions from you chaps -. I guess I'm just being picky.
the problem is, whatever I go with I'm gonna have to stick with because we're talking a whole lot of entries to get it up and running.
ACDSee does actually support all the formats you mentioned and a whole lot more - if you want a list of the formats[Appendix2] and all the multiple functions why not download the pdf manual from the website - it's free.