Managing your pictures

An easy way to locate and view pictures on your computer is to use the Pictures library. By default, the Pictures library shows all the pictures located in the My Pictures folder, but you can include other folders in your Pictures library, too. For more information, see Include folders in a library.

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To open the Pictures library

  • Open the Pictures library by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, and then clicking Pictures.

To browse the Pictures library and view pictures

To Do this
To

See a larger preview of a picture thumbnail

Do this
On the toolbar, click the Preview pane button Picture of the preview pane button, and then click the picture.
To

See the picture in a larger view

Do this

Click the picture, click the down arrow next to Preview on the toolbar, and then click Windows Photo Viewer.

To arrange files in the Pictures library

To Do this
To

Arrange your pictures by folder, month, day, rating, tag, or another property

Do this

In the library pane (above the file list), click an item in the Arrange by list.

To
Reset a file arrangement back to its default state after changing views in the Views menu Picture of the Views button
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In the Arrange by list, click Clear changes.

To search the Pictures library

To Do this
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Find a picture by file name or tag

Do this

In the search box, type the name of the file or tag. You can type the entire name, or just the first few letters.

For more information about adding tags to pictures, see Tag pictures so they're easier to find.

Picture of the search box
The search box
To

Find a picture by tag

Do this

In the navigation pane, under Libraries, click Pictures, click the search box, click Tags, and then click a tag to view all the pictures using that tag.

Picture of tags in the search box
Tags in the search box
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Return to the Pictures library after searching

Do this
After you've searched for pictures, click the Back button Picture of the Back button to go from the search results back to the Pictures library.
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Find a picture using multiple tags

Do this

In the search box, click Tags, click a tag, type AND, and then type the other tag to view all pictures using both of those tags.

For example, if you want to find pictures tagged with both "flower" and "mountain," here's how to enter it in the search box: Tags: flower AND mountain.

If you want to find pictures that are tagged with one tag or another, you can use OR. For example, to find pictures tagged with "flower" or "mountain," here's how to enter it in the search box: Tags: flower OR mountain.

To

Find a picture by file extension

Do this

In the search box, click Type, and then click the picture file type you want to find.

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Find a picture by year, month, range of dates, or date taken

Do this

In the search box, click Date taken, and then click one of the criteria that's listed in the box. For example, if you want to find all the pictures you took this year, click Earlier this year.

To find pictures taken in a certain month, locate and click the month in the calendar.

To

Find pictures taken on different dates

Do this

In the search box, click Date taken, type the first date, type OR, and then type another date. For example, if you want to find pictures taken on May 18, 2008 OR May 20, 2008, you would type this in the search box: Datetaken: 5/18/2008 OR 5/20/2008.

To

Find a picture by rating

Do this

In the search box, type Rating:, and click a set of stars to see all of the pictures that have been marked with that star rating.

To include a folder in the Pictures library

You can change the items that appear in your Pictures library by including folders. This is convenient if you store some pictures in a location other than the My Pictures or Public Pictures folders.

  1. Open the Pictures library by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, and then clicking Pictures.

  2. In the library pane (above the file list), next to Includes, click Locations.

  3. In the Pictures Library Locations dialog box, click Add.

  4. Go to the folder or drive containing pictures, click Include folder, and then click OK.