PI7 Batch Manager

The PI7 Browse Manager makes it easy to open a group of images so that they can all be edited at the same time. One the selected images are open, the Batch Manager is a very quick and easy way to perform the same operation(s) on a selected group of images currently open in the work space. It's especially useful for executing a sequence of commands that are too complex to handle as a task in the Quick Command Panel.

batch manager to resize images

At the bottom of this page I'll show you how to use Batch Manager as a workaround for tweaking the copyright statement task from my recent Copyright Task tutorial.

To begin with, make a folder on your hard drive and name it "batch" (without the quotes). You'll be saving some images to this folder, so remember where it is. Now open the Browse Manager from the Panel Manager (arrow).

Browse manager

Browse to the PI7 Samples folder. Select any 5 of the photos from the Samples folder by clicking on one to select it, then hold down on the Ctrl key while selecting 4 other photos. As you can see in the screen shot below, this method lets you select images that aren't adjacent to one another.

select 5 images

While the thumbnails are selected, drag from any one of them to the work space. All five images will open up. Now that you have them open in the work space, you can process them. Close the Browse Manager, or double click on its blue title bar to minimize it, so it's out of your way.

Choose Window, Batch Manager (or hit Shift+F6). Doing so opens the Batch Manager dialog box.  A thumbnail appears for each image currently open in the work space. Click on the Select All button to select all of them.

select all thumbnails

When you select all the images, you'll see that all of the image names are selected in the Images section on the left. Now you have to choose a Category of commands and a corresponding Operation. Click the Category down arrow and you'll see Special, Task (to apply a Task listed in the Quick Command Panel) and commands from the Menu items.

Let's reduce the size of these images, then save them as 90% Standard Optimized JPG's. From the Category dropdown list select Format, and choose Image Size from the Operation dropdown list.

Format, Image Size

Click OK and the Image Size dialog box will open.

resize with Image Size dialog box

In the Image Size section, edit the value to 75 Percent. Make sure "Keep aspect ratio" is selected to keep the width-to-height ratio constant. I like to use the Bicubic Resample method because it results in a better quality image (although it also makes a slightly bigger file size than Bilinear). Click OK. In a few seconds all of the images will be resized to 75%. You can imagine how handy this could be if you routinely download from your camera high quality digital photos that come out at 1600 X 1200 pixels, and you need to resize them for display on a web page.

To save the images as 90% Standard Optimized JPG's, choose Window, Batch Manager again. This time select Web from the Category dropdown, and Image Optimizer from the Operation dropdown.

choose web, image optimizer

Click the Select All button to select all of the images open in the work space and click OK. Doing so will open the Image Optimizer. Select JPG, Standard Optimized, 90%.

90% standard optimized JPG

Click Save As. When the Save As dialog box opens, name the first image image1, browse to the batch folder on your hard drive and click Save. Immediately the Image Optimizer will open again for the second image. Click Save As, name it image2, browse to the batch folder and click Save. Repeat these steps for the rest of the images, naming them image3, image4 and image5, respectively.

Those five images have been saved to the batch folder. But the originals remain open in the work space. If you want to close them out, there's usually a tedious process involved of clicking the X to close, then getting a prompt that asks, "Save changes to image name?" and you have to select an option and click to close it out. To close 5 images, that's a lot of clicks.

The Batch Manager gives you a really easy way to close a bunch of images without the prompts to save. Choose Window, Batch Manager again and click Select All. Choose Special and Close Quickly, then click OK.

special, close quickly

You'll get this message: "Close Quickly will close all images without saving. Do you want to continue?" Click Yes and bingo, all of the images will be closed instantly. OK, you get one nag screen, but it's much faster than closing images out the usual way.

You can probably think of many other ways to use Batch Manager, especially if you enjoy digital photography. Batch Manager lets you automate a sequence of commands that can't be performed as tasks in the Quick Command Panel. For example, in my Copyright Statement Task tutorial, I showed how to apply a copyright statement to an entire folder full of photos. Some people wanted to know if they could edit the Merge method of the copyright statement, but it's not possible to do so with a QCP task.

There is a workaround in the Batch Manager, but it would require you to have the images open in the work space, rather than applying the task to a folder full of images. You could copy the copyright statement into the Clipboard, as you would normally do for the task. In the Quick Command Panel, deselect the Merge All command. That will cause the task to stop playing at that point. You won't be running the task from the QCP, but you need to deselect (uncheck) that step (arrow below).

deselect merge all

Now choose Window, Batch Manager. From the Category dropdown select Task, and from the Operation dropdown choose the Copyright Statement task. Click Select All, then click OK. The copyright statement task will be applied to all of the images, but the object won't be merged with the base image. For each image, you can right click on the copyright statement object and choose Properties, then select Soft Light or some other Merge Method, then right click Merge All.

change merge method

You could then run another Batch Task to save the images in the Image Optimizer.

This tutorial uploaded 12/28/01

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