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Old Sep 1, 2007, 12:08 PM   #1
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Hi all,

I been having problem managing all the pictures I've been taking with my assorted cameras. I tend to take too many shots, preferring to bracket my photos and redoing the shots if the kid's eyes are shut etc. This means that I can easily fill a 1 GB at one occasion and generate 250+ jpegs.

In6 months I'vetaken 4400files and 20 gigsworth.

Now my problem is trying to sort and view all the pictures. I've been using photohop elementsbut I find it to be extremelyslow and not very stableunder Vista.The only feature I do like is the 'stacks' which allows me to collect up the bracketted shots and only display one.

What are other people using to sort and manage your pictures?

Elements is fine enough for an editor - I don't like to edit, I prefer to be behind the camera not in front of a computer.

thx in advance
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Old Sep 1, 2007, 12:46 PM   #2
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Irfanview is the best tool I have found for managing photos if you use the Windows file system. If you hit the T key it will make thumbnails of that entire folder. You can make the default thumbnail size larger so you can make most decisions from the thumbnails rather than have to open the picture. I use 200 pixels for thumbs as that gives me four abreast plus the navigator window. You can also set thumbnails to include sub-folders.

You can make new folders in the navigator. You can hold the Ctrl key while you highlight multiple photos and do a large range of things to the highlighted images. You can move them, add comments and IPTC data, delete or do an extremely wide range of bulk actions.

Something that really helped me was a suggestion a couple of years ago to use filenames that kept everything in order with a year/month/day format. So photos I downloaded today would have a file name like "070901 Bob's party and boat parade". I file my photos under the camera I used. I usually remember what camera I used for a photo I am looking for and about when it was taken, so it is pretty easy to find with Irfanview thumbnails and the navigator.

I don't much care for programs that organize my photos. Either beginner's programs like EasyShare and Picasa or professional level programs like IMatch don't do as good a job for me as setting up my file system in a logical order. The organization programs work great if you are fastidious about adding comments and keywords to every photo. But I find them a hindrance if you don't.

Picasa is useful for people who have no idea how their file system works or where their photos are on the computer. You don't impress me as being in that category.

I usually start with Irfanview for most image projects. I have Photoshop set as my external editor in Irfanview, so images are usually opened in Photoshop from Irfanview thumbnails. And there are some bulk things that work better from Irfanview. That would be especially true for someone with Elements since you can't make actions to automate stuff.

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Old Sep 2, 2007, 12:58 AM   #3
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I tried Irfanview, and was appalled at how slow it was to generate thumbnails.

My preferred viewer is Ulead Photoexplorer. It was included with Photoimpact, but, having tried it, I would pay for it separately. Faster from the start at generating thumbnails. and caches them, so the next time you open the folder, they are there almost immediately. There is an album function if you want, but I just use it as a browser and portal to editors. It can open a pic to whatever software you select.

I also use a date based file system. Folder for year, subfolder for month, sub-sub for day. Pex can be used to upload your photos from camera automatically. Works similar to Windows explorer and will start up when you attach camera or card reader.

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