More on moving photos from camera to computer using Windows Live Photo Gallery

Has this ever happened to you?

same file name

You find that different photos have the same name. This can happen whenever your camera starts over with its numbering scheme. Some cameras do that automatically when you install a new memory card or even after you have moved and erased the pictures. You can set your camera to keep using the next sequential number, but even that will eventually come to a “roll-over” after it reaches 9999 or whatever the camera’s maximum number is.

How to get unique file numbers

To make you file names and your folder names unique, make the date part of the name! This will also help sort the files and folders by date – they way most of us think of our pictures.

Windows Live Photo Gallery provides a number of options for managing folder and file numbers. Click File then on the drop-down menu click Options. In the Options dialog window click the Import tab. Now it will look like this:

WLPG-Options 3

These are the default settings. Click on the button next to Folder name: and select Date Taken + Name – of course, you might want one of the other options.



Similarly make the selection for File name:


These settings will “stick”, you will not need to do this each time. Whith these settings your photos will be named like this:


Note that both the folder names and the file names for the pictures will start with the date year-month-day. The name of each photo starts with the folder name and is followed by the exposure number assigned by the camera. I like mine that way. I move a lot of my pictures around, and this way I will still instantly know is “source”. Choose the method that suits you best.

By the way, if you have already opened the import dialog you can still get to these options. In the lower left of the windows click on image and the same option dialog opens.


About Ludwig

Lending a helping hand where I can. . . My motto: If it is worth doing, it is worth doing well.
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2 Responses to More on moving photos from camera to computer using Windows Live Photo Gallery

  1. Jerry Kunze says:

    Help, I have 25000 photo’s, 50% old ones scanned in,other 50% from several cameras…I have added tags to 75% and based on an old version of Photo Gallery…could call up all tagged by tag. I now have Windows Live Photo Gallery 7 and cannot seem to be able to do this. With hundreds of hours into this project I have cause to worry. Can you please help. Grandfather Jerry

    • Ludwig says:

      The current version is called Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011. It is Build 15.4.3538.513 (as of March 2012). If you do not have this latest version, download it from the Microsoft site. I have not experienced any problems with the tagging, but maybe I don’t have such early version photos. Be sure that the tags show in the navigation pane (click the blue tab – OptionsGeneral – make sure that the Show descriptive tags box is checked). If that is not the problem right-click on one of the photos and select PropertiesDetails. Check the Tags field. If your tags are shown there, they will work in Photo Gallery. If this was not helpful, please contact me – click Ask Ludwig in the menu bar then click Send message. Good luck!

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