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Thread: Image Posting Guidelines

  1. #1
    Webmaster Don McRitchie's Avatar
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    Image Posting Guidelines

    There have been a number of questions about how to add images to posts. This note is intended to provide guidelines on how to do this.

    There are two methods available. You can either link to an existing image on the web or you can upload an image from your computer. The first method is preferable from a site maintenance perspective. Linking means that the image is not stored in this forum and this reduces storage and bandwidth requirements.

    Here first, are the instructions for linking to photos. Further down in this post are instructions for uploading files from your computer. These instructions are based on using Microsoft Internet Explorer as your browser. However Netsacpe commands are so similar, these instructions should be applicable to Netscape users.

    To begin, open the web page containing the image you want to link. Move your mouse pointer over the picture. Right click the mouse and choose “Properties”. A dialog box will open giving data about the image. Look for the address of the image and select it by dragging your mouse over the entire text URL. If the address is more than one line long, make sure your selection contains all lines. Right click over the selected text and click “Copy”.

    Now, go back to this forum and begin composing the post that you want to contain the image by clicking “Reply” or “New Thread” on the appropriate page. Along the top of the editing dialog box, you will see a button labelled “IMG”. Clicking “IMG” opens a small dialog box that asks for the address of the image. Move your mouse over this box, right click, and choose “Paste”. Make sure that you overwrite the default “http://” that is in this box so that it does not appear twice. Click “OK” and your image will be linked. The image will be placed at the location of your cursor within your message

    I recognize that very few have access to a web site to host their photos or can find the image they want on someone else's site. For everything else, the following will allow digital images to be uploaded from your own computer.

    First, there are restrictions on what can be posted. You cannot post an image that is more than 160kb. Further, you cannot post an image that is more than 800 pixels wide. The first constraint is meant to keep forum storage requirements at a reasonable level. The second is meant to preserve the readability of the forum.

    Images greater than 800 pixels wide will not be displayed within the viewable area of the vast majority of users monitors. Viewing such large images would require horizontal scrolling which greatly reduces the utility of such photos. More significantly, it messes up the formatting of the entire thread. The post containing the image must expand to at least the width of the photo. If this goes beyond the monitor resolution, it means that you have to scroll horizontally for every line of text in the post just to read it. Depending on the situation, it can also do the same for subsequent posts.

    To have your image fall within the above restrictions, you will likely need to prepare it prior to uploading to the forum. The following provides instructions on this preparation. This only pertains to Windows PC’s. Someone else will have to jump in for guidance on how to do this on a Mac since I do not have access to one.

    You will need to have an image processing application on your computer to do the prep work. At a minimum, Microsoft Paint (which comes with Windows) may work. However, older versions do not support jpgs, and as you will see, this is a must to use images on this forum. A free program that I like to use is called Lviewpro. Only the older versions are free. The newest version works for a limited time and then shuts down until you pay for it. A free version of the older Lviewpro V1D can be found here:

    http://www.usinternet.com/users/n0fl..._Lviewpro.html

    This version is “nagware” meaning that it will constantly remind you to register. However, it will work without registration.

    The prep work is required to make sure that the image is not more than 800 pixels wide and to make sure that it is in a “jpg” format (which will pretty much ensure that it is below 160kb in size). As a bit of background, there are four primary image types that are common in the “Windows” world. These are “bmp”, “gif”, “tif” and “jpg”. Of these image types, only “jpg” uses a compressed file format The others are uncompressed and therefore tend to be as much as 20 times larger in file size. Images have to be converted to “jpg” to be used on our forum if you want to ensure that you are within the file size limitations.

    To do this, open up Lviewpro. On the menu bar, click “File”, “Open” and find the image file on your computer that you want to upload. This image can be in any of the above listed file formats (and many that are not listed). Once open, look at the coloured bar at the very top of Lviewpro window. Here you will see the filename along with the image size in brackets. For example “picture.bmp (1200X1024X16.7 million)”. The first number in brackets is the width of the image in pixels. If, like the example above, the number is more than 800, you will need to resize the image.

    To do this, click “Edit” on the menu bar and then “Resize”. A new dialog box will open. At the very top of this box, there are two spaces to enter a new width and height. Enter 800 in the left box and do not enter anything in the right box. Make sure that “Preserve Aspect Ratio” has a check mark beside it at the bottom of the dialog box. Click “OK” and you are done resizing. Now you just have to make sure that your file is in a jpg format.

    In the previous example, the file was in a “bmp” format and must be changed. Even if you started with a “jpg” file, you should execute the following steps to ensure that you save your resize changes in a new file. To do this, click “File”, “Save As” on the menu bar. A new dialog box will open. Make sure that the “Save as Type” line is set to “jpeg”. Enter a new file name. You need to do this if you don’t want to overwrite your original file. Click “Save” and you are done. I can guarantee that if you follow these steps, your image file will not be rejected by our forum.

    To upload your newly prepped image file, go to the forum and compose a new post by clicking “Reply” or “New Thread” on the appropriate page. Below the main editing window, you will see a section called “Attach File” with a space to enter a filename and a “Browse” button to the right. At any time while you are editing, you can attach an image. However, the image will always be placed at the very end of your message no matter when you attach it.

    The easiest way to attach the file is to click “Browse” to open a file dialog box and then navigate to the directory containing your image file. Click on the filename you want and then click “Open”. The path to your file should now be displayed immediately to the left of the “Browse” button in the “Attach File” section of the editing window. When you are finished editing the text of your post, click “Submit Reply” or “Submit Post” and your image should be attached to your post.

    You should note that not all uploaded images are automatically displayed. Only “jpg” and “gif” files can be displayed within a post. All other file types appear as a link that you can click to download on your computer. There you can use any compatible program to view the file.

    As a final note, I have attached an image just to illustrate how large a picture you can include within the forum restrictions. The image below is a high res color photo that is 768 pixels wide (you could actually go a bit larger). By converting it to a jpg, the file size is only 95kb. This is well below the 160kb limit. (BTW, the photo is of Mark Gander - JBLpro Vice President of Marketing and our mentor at Harman International)
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Regards

    Don McRitchie

  2. #2
    Moderator / Treasurer/Marketplace Czar boputnam's Avatar
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    "the photo is of Mark Gander - JBLpro Vice President of Marketing and our mentor at Harman International"
    Ain't that a Jerry Garcia tie?

    He not only has good taste, he dresses well!! Nice...

    Thanks heaps, Don, for the extra effort in preparing the instructions. Posting pictures is an immeasurable aid in understanding the issues and findings (and opinions... ) here. I "learnt it along the way", but now find much of my trial-and-error useful, elsewhere. And, more importantly, I find now that I really did NOT need to get Photoshop - Ugh! I can do most with resizing in little ol' MS Paint. Oh well, Photoshop has utilities I will find uses for, no doubt (eh, Widget?).

    Now, how 'bout a primer on the mystical Avatar (and it's limits here) that I'm guessing still befuddles many...?
    bo

    "Indeed, not!!"

  3. #3
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    Kodak Image Processing Software

    Hi All

    Here's a link to Kodaks' image processing software . It's free . You just need to devote some time to actually downloading a 13 to 16 Mb file ( depending on type of system being run ) . This software also does batch processing ( say ; "save as", all as smaller files ). It's quite powerful, and has a few image "enhancement capabilities. It has everything I need for posting pics on the net .

    A couple of quirks to note : The MAC version takes over the desktop ( so don't panic ) when your whole desktop "disappears" . To make the software "Quit" you need to click the "X" in the top-right hand window of the application . This software can't "Browse" its way to the desktop . It freezes. So in case of a freeze do a "forced quit" ; press ; Option/ Command/esc ( all together - and you'll do the forced quit ). This means you can't put those pics at desktop level for editing purposes. They have to reside at least on the hard-drive level , better yet in a specific folder .

    I usually shoot a few pics in 1 Meg mode. Import the whole batch, crop to size, then maybe use the "Save As" feature - selecting "best" for the compression type and a size of 640 x 480 . Just about always gives back jpgs that are around 60 k.

    Kodak Picture Software -download page

    <> Earl K

  4. #4
    Webmaster Don McRitchie's Avatar
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    Now, how 'bout a primer on the mystical Avatar (and it's limits here) that I'm guessing still befuddles many...?
    Good point Bo. Let's give it a shot.

    For those who don't know, avatars are small images that you can have associated with your name that will show up to the left of every post you make. You can upload a favourite image from your computer to be your custom avatar much like uploading an image to a post. However, you only have to do it once for it to show up on all current and subsequent posts.

    Just like image posting, there are two restrictions to avatars that will likely require some prep work before you can successfully upload the image. First, the image cannot be larger than a square that is 150 pixels wide and 150 pixels high. Second, the total image size must be smaller than 20kb. The following instructions will allow you to modify an image to meet these restrictions. Again, they are based on using the program Lviewpro that can be obtained here:

    http://www.usinternet.com/users/n0fl..._Lviewpro.html

    To start, find an image on your computer or on the web that you would like to use for your avatar. If it is on the web, you must first download it onto your computer. Remember, the image will be reduced to be no more than 150 X 150 pixels, which on most monitors, will appear to be the size of a large postage stamp. Therefore, you should avoid images consisting of small details since they will be lost in the reduction.

    Now, open Lviewpro. On the menu bar, click “File”, “Open” and find the image file on your computer that you want to use. This picture can be in any of the standard image file formats. Once open, look at the coloured bar at the very top of Lviewpro window. Here you will see the filename along with the image size in brackets. For example “avatar.bmp (800X600X16.7 million)”. The first number in brackets is the width of the image in pixels and the second is the height. If, like the example above, either or both are greater than 150, you will need to resize the image.

    To do this, click “Edit” on the menu bar and then “Resize”. A new dialog box will open. At the very top of this box, there are two spaces to enter a new width and height. Enter 150 in the left box and enter 150 in the right box. Make sure that “Preserve Aspect Ratio” has a check mark beside it at the bottom of the dialog box. Click “OK” and you are done resizing. Now you just have to make sure that your file is in a jpg format.

    As with image posts, your avatar must be in a jpg format or you will likely exceed the file size limitation (most animated gifs would likely still fit, but that is beyond the scope of this post). In the previous example, the file was in a “bmp” format and must be changed. Even if you started with a “jpg” file, you should execute the following steps to ensure that you save your resize changes in a new file. To do this, click “File”, “Save As” on the menu bar. A new dialog box will open. Make sure that the “Save as Type” line is set to “jpeg”. Enter a new file name. You need to do this if you don’t want to overwrite your original file. Click “Save” and you are done. Again, I can guarantee that if you follow these steps, your image file will not be rejected by our forum.

    To upload the new avatar, click the grey button labelled “User CP” that is leftmost in the row of buttons found at the top of every page of the forum. This allows you to edit your user profile. You must be logged in before you can access this. A new page will load labelled “User Control Panel for (your name)”. Along the top will be a series of links. Click the link labelled “Edit Options”. Scroll to the very bottom to a section called “Other Options”. At the bottom right, there should be a grey button labelled “Change Avatar”. Click this button to load a new page.

    Go to the section labelled “Custom Avatars”. Click the “Yes” button to the right of “Use Custom Avatar”. Click the grey “Browse” button to the right of “You can upload an avatar from your computer:” This will open a file dialog box that you can use to navigate to the directory containing the image you just prepared. Click on the filename you want and then click “Open”. The path to your file should now be displayed immediately to the left of the “Browse” button. Click “Submit Modifications” and you are done. Your avatar should show up next to all of your posts currently on the forum in addition to any new posts you make.

    You should note that you can change your avatar at any time following the same instructions. However, the new avatar will replace your old one even on previous posts.
    Regards

    Don McRitchie

  5. #5
    Moderator / Treasurer/Marketplace Czar boputnam's Avatar
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    Post yer damn pictures as .jpg's!!

    Doods...

    As we work through the morass that is this Forum attempting to parse posthumously (yet appropriately...) into the new DIY subForum, there are many, many threads which contained Links to photos, rather than having the photos (as .jpg's, etc.) imbedded here.

    As I warned over a year ago, the Links are expiring, and therefore those threads are gutted. Worthless.

    Please go to the effort of posting your pics here as .jpgs. This preserves the essence of what you thought was important enough to post in the first place.
    bo

    "Indeed, not!!"

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