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Conditional Batch Processing in Fireworks 8

Batch resizing images proportionally By Dave Nagel
Version 8 may not be the most significant update in the history of Macromedia Fireworks, but it does have one important new feature that's sure to impact the lives of Web designers everywhere. And that feature, at long last, is conditional batch processing--the ability to resize images in a batch selectively based on the properties of a given image. At long last!

What this new feature allows you to do, essentially, is to create scripts that let you resize an entire directory of images, but without scaling images that fall outside the parameters you set. For example, if you set your batch to resize images to 800 x 600, you now have the option of skipping images that are smaller than 800 x 600, so it's only reducing the images' sizes, rather than enlarging them. Here's how to create one such conditional action.

1. Begin by launching Fireworks. If you have a particular optimization setting that you want to use for your images, create those settings now. Do that by adjusting the settings, then clicking the flyaway menu on the right and choosing "Save Settings" from the list of available options.

For my example, I'll create one called "Dave 65," which is just a JPEG optimization with a quality of 65.

2. Now, to create your batch process, choose File > Batch Process.

3. In the dialog that comes up, choose the source folder, and then hit the "Open" button.

A new dialog will come up. Here, add the export settings you wish to use for your converted files. (Select "Export" from the list one the left of the dialog, then click the "Add" button.) I, of course, will choose the one I created in Step 1, "Dave 65."

4. Now add the Scale command to the list of commands. Again, select "Scale" from the list of options on the left, then click the Add button to add this function tot he sequence of actions your script will run. Once you add this command, a list of options will become available. Choose the one called "Scale to Fit Area."

Then, as seen below, set the maximum height and width for the images. In my case, I'm setting these for 500 pixels each. This will proportionally scale down any images that exceed 500 pixels either horizontally or vertically.

The critical part here is to check the option labeled "Only scale documents currently larger than target size." This will ensure that images smaller than 500 x 500 will not be scaled up in the batch process, though they will still be exported to the format you've specified (JPEG 65, in my case).

5. Now click the "Next" button. In this dialog, you'll choose the destination folder for the images once they're processed.

Finally, in that same window, click the button called "Save Script." This will save the action you just created as a JavaScript file. Whenever you want to use this action, just double-click it to launch Fireworks and set the script running.

And that's all there is to it.

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Related Keywords:fireworks, batch processing, image scaling, conditional scale


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