Learn how to use Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 [Part 2]

In Part 1 you learned a little bit about Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 and how to install it in Windows 7. Now, in Part 2, you are going to learn the settings that are available and also the top features that are included in this release.

The first time that you run it you will be prompted to sign in to Windows Live account. If you have an account go ahead and type it or just click the Cancel button.

Windows Live Photo Gallery - Sign-in

Now is the time to start having fun viewing and managing images. As you can see in the image below, you can hover with the mouse pointer over the image thumbnail to view a larger preview of it. And in the left-side you have the navigation pane to browse and sort pictures (Date taken and Descriptive tags sorting options are not enabled by default, you can easily enable them by going to the file menu, Options and select those settings from the General tab), and at the top you have the now well-know Ribbon (or Fluent user interface) with all the commands that you need to complete a task.

Windows Live Photo Gallery - GUI

While in Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 Options section you can configure a variety of settings such as:

  • Import tab: In this section you have to change default actions that the program uses to import pictures from different type of devices and media.

Windows Live Photo Gallery - Import

  • Publish tab: This is a really cool setting, because it allows you to configure what type of data (or metadata) from your images are included when you publish them to different online services using Photo Gallery, giving you more control over your privacy.

Windows Live Photo Gallery - Publish

  • Originals tab: Photo Gallery saves a copy of an original image when you edit it, that way you can revert changes in the future. Additionally you can configure for how long to keep originals.

Windows Live Photo Gallery - Originals

Microsoft has made a lot of improvements to Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 compare with previous versions. This time is packed with great features making it a great alternative over other free and paid photo management products. Among all the basic features you can expect, you can also find features such as:

Personalize your computer by adding a Screen Saver using your own photo collection.

Windows Live Photo Gallery - Screen Saver

In the Create section you can perform task like:

  • Panorama: Create a panorama image from two or more pictures of the same scene.
  • Photo Fuse: This is also an awesome feature that allows you to blend the best parts of two or more pictures into a perfect one.
  • Movie Maker: This is an additional piece of software that gets installed and allows you to create CDs and DVDs to share with family and friends.
  • Publish: With this built-in feature, sharing becomes simple and faster, you can choose what online service to use to share like Skydrive, Facebook, YouTube, Flick and Messenger. You can extent even more the way you share with Photo Gallery plug-ins and much more.

Windows Live Photo Gallery - Create

Got a camera or storage media fill with great pictures? No problem! Just plug the device or media into the computer and Photo Gallery will provide an easy way to the import them all.

Windows Live Photo Gallery - Import images from camera or other media.

Another great little feature built-in to the program is Resize your photos. Just right-click the photo from the gallery and select Resize, then you will be able to select between predefined image sizes or you can use your own custom size.

Windows Live Photo Gallery - Resize

Double-click on an image to edit people tags, geotag, caption and to view other information. Also from the editing section you can adjust many things about the image like: Red eye, Crop, Effects, Color, Exposure, Noise reduction, and much more.

Windows Live Photo Gallery - Edit

To wrap up Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 comes packed with a lot more useful features than in previous versions. It is easy to use and understand, once you have it installed it takes almost not time to start managing your photo collection. Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 requires 32 or 64-bit version of Windows 7 or Windows Vista with Service Pack 2 and the Platform Update for Windows Vista. If you are in the hunt for a new and fun photo manager program, Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 is a must take a look at.

Go back to Part 1…

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About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 14 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and About.me. Email him at [email protected].