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How to: Use the rating system in non-XMP workflows?

PostPosted: Mon Mar 23, 2009 5:05 pm
by Axel
FastPictureViewer fully supports image rating and labeling following the Adobe XMP metadata convention. This is great if the software applications used downstream in the workflow is XMP-compliant and understands the ratings and labels. Examples of such software includes professional digital asset management suites like IDimager, Microsoft Expression Media, Adobe Lightroom or Adobe Bridge. FPV supports external XMP sidecars for all file formats and metadata embedding in some of them, including JPEG, TIFF and HD Photo.

FPV can also embed ratings within the files following the Microsoft Windows Photo Rating convention, so users of Windows Vista and Windows 7 can see the ratings in Windows Explorer and Photo Gallery, then sort / search based on the number of 'stars' an image was given. Users of Windows Media Player 11 also see those embedded ratings and they can be used to filter and sort an image collection.

It is expected that more applications will support this standard in the future but for other workflows, FastPictureViewer implements a simple renaming scheme where the rating value, a number between 1 and 5, is pre-pended to the image file names, enclosed in curly braces, whenever the image is rated within the program. If, for example, an image file named DSC_0001.jpg was given a rating of 5 stars in FPV, the program can rename the file into {5}DSC_0001.jpg to make it easy to sort / search the files later on from Explorer or any file-management tool. For obvious reasons, this renaming mode works when FPV is set to sort the images by date/time. This feature makes it easy to take advantage of the rating system in non-XMP workflows.

All three modes can be combined, i.e. the program can create an external sidecar, embed the metadata and rename the file(s). Renaming also works with sidecars and "image stacks" such as JPG+RAW in FPV Pro: as one expects, all stacked files are renamed together.