Windows 7 : Managing Pictures with Windows Live Photo Gallery (part 14) - Sharing with E-mail, Sharing on the Web: Services Integration

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8.4. Network-Based Library Sharing and Portable Device Syncing

You can also share your photos with other Windows–based PCs on your home network, and with compatible devices like the Xbox 360. You can also synchronize photos with a compatible portable device. However, these features are actually exposed through Windows Media Player, not Windows Live Photo Gallery.

8.5. Sharing with E-mail

If you'd like to send a picture or group of pictures to friends or others, you can use the built-in e-mail sharing capabilities of Photo Gallery. As always, select the pictures you'd like to send first, and then click the E-mail button in the toolbar. The Attach Files dialog, shown in Figure 54, will appear. Here, you can choose how or whether to resize your images for transit, which is likely a good idea, as many of today's digital photos are quite large. Several picture size options are available, including Smaller (640 × 480), Small (800 × 600), Medium (1024 × 768, which is the default), Large (1280 × 1024), and Original Size. As you select a size, the total estimated size will change so you can gauge whether you're sending too many pictures at once.

Figure 54. The Photo size drop-down enables you to choose from various preset sizes.

After your selection, click Attach and a new e-mail message will appear in Windows Live Mail or whatever e-mail application you've specified as the default.

8.6. Sharing on the Web: Services Integration

As you might expect of a Windows Live application, Windows Live Photo Gallery offers unique integration points with other Windows Live online services, especially Windows Live Photos, Microsoft's photo-sharing service. Perhaps more impressive, it also offers some integration with non-Microsoft online services. It's time to examine this integration.

We previously discussed that Windows Live Photo Gallery allows you to log on to your Windows Live ID account using a handy Sign in link in the upper-right corner of the application. This is entirely optional (as are the other Windows Live integration features), but if you do use a Windows Live ID, you might find it convenient to automatically log on each time you use Windows Live Photo Gallery. Doing so will give you access to the other services with which this application integrates, meaning you won't have to manually log on later.

Most of the integration points are accessible via the Publish toolbar button. From here, you can publish photos online in the following ways:

  • Online album: Any selected photo(s) will be published to Microsoft's Windows Live Photos service and added to an existing album or a new album. As shown in Figure 55, you can choose the upload size of the pictures (Original, Large, and Medium) in addition to the album in which they will be placed.

    Figure 55. Want to share your photos with the world? This is the way.
  • Group album: Any selected photo(s) will be published to Windows Live Groups, a Microsoft online service for groups of individuals who share similar hobbies or interests.

  • Event album: Any selected photo(s) will be published to Windows Live Events, Microsoft's events service.

  • Soapbox on MSN video: Any selected video(s) will be published to MSN Soapbox, Microsoft's answer to YouTube ( The Publish wizard that appears lets you provide a title, a description, and up to five tags, and then select category and permission levels.

  • More Services: If you haven't bought into the Microsoft ecosystem, this will be the most interesting option because it's the gateway to non-Microsoft services. Only one service, the Flickr photo-sharing site, is available off the bat, but you can download add-ons that make Windows Live Photo Gallery compatible with a variety of non-Microsoft online services, including such popular sites as Facebook (photos), YouTube (videos), SmugMug (photos), Google Picasa Web Albums (photos) and others. To see what's available, click Publish => More Services => Add a plug-in.

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