Enable windows file extensions
By convention and to make stuff easier to find, an abbreviation of the type of a digital file is usually appended to the end of the filename itself. For example, a JPEG photograph might have .JPG on the end like so: DSCN2502.JPG
On the Windows operating system this extension is hidden by default, so all you would see is DSCN2502 and the type of the file is indicated by the icon of the program that would be used to open-it (presumably this is to prevent users changing the extension by accident when renaming files).
When stitching photographs or doing any other kind of image manipulation, you are likely to be working simultaneously with several different image file types such as TIFF, JPEG or RAW. To distinguish between them, you have to be able to see file extensions.
To enable display of Windows file extensions in windows explorer and most file open and file save dialogs:
- Open Windows Explorer
- Choose Tools -> Folder Options... from the Menu
- Select View tab page
- Under Advanced Settings uncheck Hide file extensions for known file types
- Click Ok
This won't enable the display of all file extensions (.PIF and .LNK will be still hidden for example) but it will make working with different image file types much easier...
Unhide files and folders
Some files and folders are hidden by default. In case of system files this is to protect them from accidentially being altered or deleted by the user. However, there is at least one folder that is extremly helpful to greatly simplify batch tasks from windows explorer: The SendTo-folder. It is usually located in the Documents and Settings hierarchy as a subfolder to your user folder.
To unhide it do the same as described above and in the Advanced Settings section simply tick Show hidden files and folders.
Any link to a programs or batch file in this folder will be displayed in the explorer right click Send To menu. If you mark files in explorer and choose something from Send To menu, the respective program or batch file is called with the file names (with complete path) in the command line. Use windows help (search for %) to learn how to refer to parameters in a batch file.