Cameraid User's Guide

Version 1.3


Copyright ©1998-2003 Juri Munkki
All rights reserved


System Requirements

Carbon Version

Cameraid Carbon runs on any Macintosh running MacOS X or greater or any Macintosh with CarbonLib 1.1 or greater. Note that most of the testing has been done using MacOS 10.2.3 and MacOS 9.2.2 with CarbonLib 1.6, so compatibility with older systems is not 100% guaranteed. Quicktime is required.

Due to lack of serial port API support in Carbon, the digital camera download functionality (through a serial port) had to be removed from the carbon version. Instead, you can run the classic version under the Classic environment or you may be able to use a card reader.

Note: The screen shots in this manual were done with MacOS 9.2.2 and reflect the look of that operating system. Except for some menu items, the layout is very similar under MacOS X.

Classic Version

Cameraid Classic 1.3 requires:

  • A PowerPC processor
  • QuickTime (any version)
  • System 7 or newer
  • At least 2MB of available RAM (you have to change the memory allocation to run with this little RAM available)

The following are recommended

  • PowerPC 604 or better for enhancing large images
  • At least 8-12MB of free RAM, preferably more, for enhancing images
  • System 8.0 or later (System 7 Finder drag and drop may not function perfectly.)

Version 1.2

Version 1.2 is the last version to support Motorola 68K processors. A 68020 or better is required and the machine has to have color QuickDraw. QuickTime is highly recommended, as most parts of Cameraid require its presence. Version 1.2 is still available for download and includes its own manual with the download.

With 1.2, you can:

  • run on old PowerBooks, such as the PowerBook 140 (the PowerBook 100 is not and will not be supported).
  • run Cameraid with just 1MB of free RAM, but images may not display properly and most batch processing commands are likely to fail.
  • use Cameraid to download photos even if you don't have QuickTime - just disable everything related to viewing images.


Shareware Notice

Cameraid will always be fully functional even if you never register it. As an incentive for users to register, there are certain delays and reminders built into Cameraid. These delays become longer and more frequent as you use Cameraid. To completely eliminate the delays and reminders, you need to pay the shareware registration fee and enter a special unlock code into the registration window in Cameraid. (The registration window is opened from the File menu.)

Each and every shareware payment is important to me. $20 is a very small amount for a program like this, but with enough registrations, registrations will allow me to take more time off my main job to enhance Cameraid. If you like Cameraid, register it. Today.

Single user licenses cost $20 per user. Single user licenses are different for the Carbon and Classic versions of Cameraid. If you purchased a Cameraid license between December 1st 2001 and December 10th 2002, you can get a free Carbon registration code by E-mailing me at

A Site License costs $250 and covers all locations for your organization within a 160 kilometer radius of your site (100 miles). One big advantage of a Site License is that you do not need to keep track of how many people at your site are using the software.

A World-Wide License costs $1500 and it covers all locations for your organization on the planet earth.

For Site & World-Wide licenses, registration is based on your company name, so please include it with the order. Site and world wide licenses are automatically valid for both Carbon and Classic versions.

Paying for Cameraid is easy and can be done offline or on the Internet. Internet registrations are usually processed very quickly. Once you receive the confirmation E-mail from Kagi, you can enter the registration code into the window shown above.

Important note: The registration system requires that the name entered have at least five (5) Roman alphabet letters (a-z). If your name is shorter than this, add a Mr. or Mrs. or whatever is appropriate for your country to make the name long enough.


Secure online registrations can be made at:


Open the Register program that accompanies Cameraid. Enter your name, your email address, and the number of single user licenses you desire for each program you wish to purchase (or Site or Word-Wide licenses).

Save or Copy or Print the data from the Register program and send the data and payment to Kagi. More specifics on the Register program to follow. Kagi handles my payment processing.

If paying with Credit Card or First Virtual, you can email or fax the data to Kagi. Their email address is and their fax number is +1 510 652-6589. You can either Copy the data from Register and paste into the body of an email message or you can Save the data to a file and you can attach that file to an email message. There is no need to compress the data file, it's already pretty small. If you have a fax modem, just Print the data to the Kagi fax number.

Payments sent via email are processed within 3 to 4 days. You will receive an email acknowledgement when it is processed. Payments sent via fax take up to 10 days and if you provide a correct Internet email address you will receive an email acknowledgement.

If you are paying with Cash or USD Check you should print the data using the Register application and send it to the address shown on the form, which is:

1442-A Walnut Street #392-6R5C
Berkeley, California 94709-1405

You can pay with a wide variety of cash from different countries but at present if you pay via check, it must be a check drawn in US Dollars. Kagi cannot accept checks in other currencies, the conversion rate for non-USD checks is around USD 15 per check and that is just not practical.

If you have a purchasing department, you can enter all the data into the Register program and then select Invoice as your payment method. Print three copies of the form and send it to your accounts payable people. You might want to highlight the line that mentions that they must include a copy of the form with their payment.

Kagi can not invoice your company, you need to act on my behalf and generate the invoice and handle all the paperwork on your end.

Please do not fax or email payment forms that indicate Cash, Check or Invoice as the payment method. As far as we know, there is still no technology to transfer physical objects via fax or email and without the payment, the form cannot be processed.

Payments send via postal mail take time to reach Kagi and then up to 10 days for processing. Again, if you include a correct email address, you will hear from Kagi when the form is processed.

Unlock Codes

Cameraid has a registration code scheme and when you pay, we tell you how to indicate to Cameraid that you have paid the registration fee. When you make an online payment, the code will be included in the registration E-mail you receive from Kagi. (It is near the end of the message)

For single user licenses, the code is based on your name. Please make it very clear what the licensee name(s) for the program should be.

For site and world-wide licenses, the code is based on your company name.

If you do not have an email address, please enter your complete postal address and please remember, we do not know what country you live in so please enter that into the postal address also. Select the Postcard Receipt so that Kagi can inform you of your registration code (this costs $1 extra, which goes to Kagi). Kagi sends the registration codes via email and paid postcard receipt only.


The Cameraid home page is at:

You can always download the latest publicly available version of Cameraid from that page. Technical support for Cameraid is available by E-mail from Please read the Cameraid FAQ web page before you send in questions. Remember though that you are not dealing with a company, but an individual person. I will often provide better and faster support than companies do, but the time to do so comes out of my personal free time.

Comments and requests are always welcome, but please don't try to "blackmail" me by saying that you will not registered unless I implement this and that. With $15, the most you can expect to do is to cast a vote.

Key Ideas

I realize that some people hate reading manuals. Ideally you don't need a manual to operate a program and make the most out of it. Unfortunately Cameraid is not ideal and from correspondence with users and beta testers, I can see that most users only tap a small portion of the program's power and features.

Here's a list of important things to remember even if you decide not to read the whole manual:

  • Downloads from digital cameras are easy. Read the manual if you have a problem or you want to learn some tricks, but otherwise you can just skip the manual and plunge right ahead and try it. Just remember that there's a lot more to Cameraid than just downloading photos from a camera.
  • The classic version supports serial port downloads, the carbon version does not.
  • The viewer window is the central part of Cameraid. Think of it as a slide projection screen that only shows one photo at a time. You can usually have thousands of images open before you run out of memory. Therein lies the power and speed of the Cameraid viewer.
  • Keyboard shortcuts are an important part of operating the viewer. There's a quick reference sheet in the help menu. The left and right arrow keys are the most important keys.
  • Photos can be graded to sort the good from the bad. Think of this as giving the thumbs up or thumbs down for a photo. Cameraid was originally written for the specific task of being able to sort out good and bad photos from a large collection.
  • The shortcuts menu is way cool and easy to use, but you really should read the manual to see how it works. To quote a beta tester: "Every application should have this feature."
  • Use drag and drop to open all the images in a folder or a disk. You can drag onto Cameraid's program icon (assuming your desktop file is up to date) and directly onto the viewer window.
  • It's possible to drag more than one file at a time from the viewer window to other applications (like the Finder). Shift and control keys are used to modify many operations to operate on multiple files. Read the manual to find out exactly how it's done - it's not obvious.
  • Cameraid offers lossless JPEG transforms. It's the best way to rotate digital photographs to their correct orientation.
  • The batch processor is extremely powerful, but you have to understand the viewer to make full use of it. There are dozens of options and parameters, but you only need to manipulate a few at a time. Use balloon help to figure out what they do. (Apple removed balloon help from Carbon.)

If you encounter a problem, read this manual, then read the FAQ and the compatibility notes page. If you still have problems, E-mail for help.

Downloading Photos from Digital Cameras

The classic version of Cameraid supports two ways of transferring photos from a digital camera:

  1. Download through an old-style serial port (not USB)
  2. Move photos using a batch processor

The carbon (MacOS X) version only supports the latter method. If you wish to use the serial ports with MacOS X and Cameraid, you have to use the Classic version under the Classic environment.

Macintosh with USB

Macintosh with Serial ports

The camera uses memory cards

Get a card reader, use the batch processor

Card readers for SCSI exist, but are very hard to find, as they are mostly discontinued. Most cameras still support transfers through the serial port, but you may have buy the cable separately.

If you have a PCI slot available, you can get a USB card and then attach a USB card reader.

PowerBooks with PC-card slots can use PC-card adapter for memory cards. These adapters work just like card readers.

The camera has USB, appears on desktop

use the batch processor just as if you had a card reader.

The camera only has an old-style serial port.

Cameraid works well with USB to serial adapters. Card readers are faster, but the adapters work quite well too.

If your cable has a PC-style D9 connector, you can get a PDA adapter.

If your cable has a round mini-DIN (circle-8) connector, a twin serial adapter is called for.

You can use Cameraid to transfer the photos, if the protocol used in your camera is supported.

You have to use the Classic version of Cameraid.

Digital video cameras

Use a card reader, if possible

Not supported.

Old-style Serial Port Transfers (Classic Version Only)

This chapter discusses only transfer using an old-style (RS-232) serial port. If you do not have a serial port or a USB to serial adapter or you are using the Carbon version of Cameraid, skip to the next chapter.

First, check to see if your camera is supported by Cameraid. The list is long, but it doesn't cover all manufacturers and models:

  • Agfa ePhoto cameras (not compatible with the latest low end cameras that come with Windows-only software)
  • Apple Quicktake 200
  • Epson digital cameras
  • Fuji film digital cameras
  • Leica Digilux
  • Nikon Coolpix (at least models 700, 800, 880, 900, 950 and 990, and probably other newer ones as well)
  • Olympus digital cameras
  • Polaroid digital cameras (model PDC640, probably not any others)
  • Sanyo digital cameras
  • Toshiba digital cameras (at least some models)

If your camera is not supported, but you suspect that it might be compatible with one of the above cameras, you can try the Fuji film and Olympus settings, but if you do so, please remember that you are doing it at your own risk.

If your camera is on the list above, but doesn't work with Cameraid, check out the troubleshooting list later in this section. I have received some scattered reports from users who have problems with cameras that are known to be compatible with Cameraid. These are isolated cases and it's hard to predict if your camera is one of them (try Cameraid before you buy). Sometimes transfers will succeed or partially succeed at very low speeds. This is usually an indication of a bad cable or incompatible signal levels on the serial ports of the computer and camera.

To download photos from the camera, select the "Camera Control" item from the Window menu. This will open the "Digital Camera Control" window.

Communications Settings

Use the pop up menus to select the camera type, serial port and connection speed. Some of the ports may be in use by other software, such as LocalTalk, printer drivers, modems etc. You should make sure that the port you select has the camera connected and is not in use by other programs. Cameraid will give you an error message when you try to start to download when the port is already in use by another program.

If you are running out of serial ports and your Macintosh has PCI card slots or a USB port available, you can add more serial ports by adding a PCI card or USB to serial adapter. Keyspan ( makes such cards and adapters and Cameraid has been carefully designed and tested so that it works with their cards and software.

The serial port speed can be up to 230 400 bits per second.

Note:only Macs with DMA serial ports will allow speeds higher than 57600 bits per second. Cameraid will detect if the port supports the speed and lower the speed if necessary, so in practice the only thing you have to worry about is what speeds your camera will support. On many of these older Macs with two serial ports, the modem port works more reliably at higher speeds.

Some cameras from Fuji film, Toshiba and Leica and the Apple Quicktake 200 only support speeds up to 57600 bits per second. Cameraid will ask the camera what speeds it can support and drop to a lower speed automatically in some cases. For at least some cameras, the camera itself may return incorrect information, so you may have to manually change the speed to 57600.

Of the other brands, many cameras that were introduced before 1998 will operate at only 115200 bits per second. You will have to adjust the speed manually.

Speeds lower than 57600 shouldn't normally be needed. If only lower speeds work, it is usually an indication of a cable or signal problem with the serial connection. If you are using a USB to serial adapter, make sure it is connected to a powered USB port (directly to the computer is best). PDA adapters with PC style D9 serial ports may work better, since they usually offer true RS-232 signal levels (higher voltage than Macintosh serial ports).


Some cameras support multiple folders on memory cards, allowing you to organize your photos on the camera. Cameraid allows access to a single folder at a time. The folder list is only retrieved from the camera when you select "Update Folder List". Even if you only use a single folder, it's a good idea to retrieve the folder list and manually set the folder to the default folder. This way the program behaves predictably even if you some day decide to create additional folders on the memory card or if the camera automatically generates a few folders for you.

Camera Clock

If this option is checked, the internal clock on the digital camera is synchronized to the time on the Macintosh each time photos are downloaded.

TIFF and QuickTime Movie Files

Cameraid 1.2 supports downloading TIFF and QuickTime movie files. Note that Cameraid needs to store a complete copy of the file in RAM before it is written to disk (my apologies for that, but there are technical reasons for this), so make sure there's enough RAM either within Cameraid or in the free system memory (Largest Unused Block in Finder) to download a complete file. If Cameraid runs out of memory in the middle of a download, it will abort the download.

Download Options

The "Send Files to Viewer" option means that as each image file is received, it is also opened in the Cameraid viewer window. New files are appended to the end of the list of open images.

If you have the "Send Files to Viewer" option selected, you can also select the "Automatic Slide Show" option. This will show each new image file in the viewer window as it is received, thus giving you an automatic slide show of the images as soon as they have been received.

Most cameras time-stamp their photos. The "Set File Dates" option will use this time stamp (if it exists and you had the internal camera clock set) to set the creation and modification dates of the files to the actual time when the photo was taken.

You have to decide on a file naming scheme before you start the download. At its simplest, you just enter the start of the file name to Cameraid and Cameraid automatically adds numbers to that name to distinguish the files. The name can also be an advanced pattern, which allows you to use the photo time stamp as part of the file name. See the section on batch file renaming to see how patterns are used.

Some example patterns:

Resulting file names:





photo ##

photo 01

photo 02

photo 03








Erasing Photos

The "Erase All Pictures" command is only enabled when the digital camera control window is in front. This is a safety feature, because the only way to cancel the erase before it starts is to click the cancel button on that window.

Once you are satisfied that you have downloaded all the photos from the camera (or a specific folder), you can erase them and reuse the memory for new photos. Selecting "Erase All Pictures" starts a short countdown and then proceeds to erase the photos in the selected folder.

Downloading & Troubleshooting

Click on the "Start Download" button to download all the photos from the camera. The button will change to "Abort Download". Note that you can continue working on your computer while the download is progressing. Just leave Cameraid running and your photos will download in the background.

The status area will show you how the download is progressing. If it stops at "waking up camera", you should check the cables and connections and make sure the settings are correct. Most cameras also have to be turned on to be able to respond to the computer.

Once the download starts, you will be prompted for a location for the photos. All the images will be stored in the same folder. Cameraid will never overwrite an old file, so if you want, you can use the same folder over and over again and just add photos there. (Note that the Finder may become slower if you store a lot of files into a single folder.)

Note: your computer may need the SerialDMA update from Apple Computer to be able to connect to the digital camera. A quote from the read me file for serial DMA 2.1: "SerialDMA 2.1 extension works with U.S. English Mac OS 7.6.1, 8.0, or 8.1, and any of the following Mac OS computers: Power Macintosh 4400,Power Macintosh 5500, Power Macintosh 6500, Twentieth Anniversary Macintosh, Power Macintosh 7220, Power Macintosh G3, PowerBook 2400,PowerBook 3400, PowerBook G3, or PowerBook G3 Series."

If you are not experiencing any problems even though you have one of the above machines (like me), you do not necessarily need to install the update. "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

Troubleshooting Checklist:

  1. Make sure the camera is turned on and has power (good batteries).
  2. Verify that the cable is firmly connected at both ends.
  3. Verify that the serial port you selected in Cameraid matches the physical connection.
  4. If communications doesn't work at 230 400 bps, try 57 600 bps.
  5. With Keyspan cards and adapters, use the default buffer settings for the serial port - they work best.
  6. Your machine may need the SerialDMA update (applies only to built-in Apple serial ports on certain PowerPC machines).
  7. If you have problems using the printer port, try the modem port instead - it's often more reliable at high speeds.
  8. If you are using USB, connect the serial port adapter directly to the computer instead of going through a hub (such as the keyboard on an iMac).
  9. Nikon Coolpix cameras may sometimes appear to lock up after a download. If this happens, reset the camera by opening and closing the battery compartment.
  10. If the program returns to idle status almost immediately, the download folder has probably not been set correctly. See above for details.

Memory Card Readers

A card reader is probably one of the best peripherals you can get, if you own a digital camera.

Memory cards are getting larger, but serial ports aren't getting any faster, so download times are growing longer and longer.

Memory cards readers are possibly up to 100 times faster than the serial port alone (YMMV). Instead of minutes, the time to copy images from the card is reduced to mere seconds (in most cases under a minute).

Cameraid supports most memory card readers through a set of items in the Shortcuts menu. To be compatible with Cameraid, the memory card reader has to be able to mount the card as a "disk drive" on the desktop.

Note: If your camera doesn't have removable memory cards, you can't use a memory card reader to read the photos.

Note: Card readers may require additional drivers. Make sure the card reader you get is supported by the operating system. In particular, MacOS X support may not be as widely available as support for MacOS 9 and older.


Firewire card readers are probably the fastest way to transfer photos. If your Mac has a PCI slot available and is running a sufficiently recent operating system (some say MacOS 8.6, others claim MacOS 9, so this may be card-specific), you can add Firewire ports to your Mac. I have seen Mac-compatible Firewire PCI cards for as little as $10+shipping.


For machines without serial ports, USB card readers are an excellent choice. They are available for all existing memory card types. Just like Firewire, USB ports can be added to Macs with available PCI slots. Combination USB+Firewire cards are also available at a somewhat higher cost.

In general, USB card readers tend to be cheaper than Firewire versions. For most needs, even USB 1.1 is adequate, since it provides a transfer rate of approximately 1 MB/s.


SCSI card readers are extremely hard to find these days and tend to be costly. It's probably cheaper to get a USB or Firewire interface card (if you have a PCI slot available) and get an external card reader for one of those interfaces.

Old information: For machines with SCSI ports, the Minolta CD-10 is a good choice. The product itself has been discontinued, so you may have to look for a used one. Note that it's a PC-card reader, so you'll need adapters for smaller memory cards. This is in addition to the cost of the reader itself (add at least about $10 for CompactFlash and about $50 for SmartMedia). It comes with a cable, but depending on your configuration, you may need an additional cable.


Most recent PowerBooks already have PC-card (or PCMCIA) slots, so all you need is an adapter for the type of media that you use. CompactFlash adapters are very simple and cost only around $10 while SmartMedia adapters are more complicated and usually cost around $50. No driver software is needed - just insert the card and it should work OK. For this reason, most new PowerBooks are excellent companions to Digital Cameras.


When you insert the card into the reader, you can manipulate the photos just as if they were on hard disk. You could use the Finder to copy the files, but to make the card usable again, you need to delete the files. Dragging them to the trash isn't enough - you have to empty the trash as well or they will still take space on the card!

With Cameraid, you can use the three supplied shortcuts to make it easier to work with memory cards.

  1. Start cameraid and insert the memory card (in whatever order you like).
  2. If you have the viewer window open, close it now so that no images are open.
  3. Select the "Open Images on Untitled" shortcut (or hit Command-U).
  4. An image should now appear in the viewer (all the others are there too, if you want to browse them)
  5. Select "Copy and Delete Images" from the menu and specify a target folder for the copies. Cameraid will copy the images one by one and delete images it has successfully copied from the memory card.
  6. Use either the Finder or the shortcut "Put Away Untitled" to eject the memory card (keyboard shortcut Command-Y).

If you need to copy several memory cards worth of images, go back to step 1. Remember to close the viewer window before you open the images from the card: if you don't, you'll end up copying the same images over and over (no harm done, except it takes a bit of time to do the copy).

If you want to rotate the images using the lossless JPEG transforms, you should be able to do so at any stage. I recommend doing it after step 5 so that the rotated images are never stored on the memory card.

Cameraid will automatically rename the images when it copies them. If you want to add icons or previews, use another batch processor shortcut to do so after you have copied the images.

The memory card should be empty and ready for use after you eject it. It's still a good idea to reformat the card in the camera every now and then. (If you have any Digita scripts on the card, remember that formatting the card will delete them - Cameraid will not touch them.) It is my experience that cameras may not like the cards after they have been formatted on a Mac (even if you used the MS/PC-DOS format).

Read the sections on batch processors and shortcuts to learn how to learn how to make changes to these shortcuts.

Note: The shortcuts for opening the photos and ejecting the memory card depend on the card being named "Untitled". If you have renamed the card or it has some other name by default, you can simply redefine the alias used for opening the photos and rerecord the AppleScript for ejecting the memory card.

Note: AVI video files are not supported in Cameraid 1.3. I plan to look into this in a future version, but for now, they need to be copied using the Finder. I usually also convert them into QuickTime movies, so that they can be browsed and used with Cameraid.

Note: If you accidentally format a card that still contained photos or delete important photos, it may be possible to recover those photos from that card, as long as new photos have not been stored over the old ones that were deleted. Please contact me for details.

Viewing Images

Have you ever been in a situation where you have a hundreds or thousands of images and you need to select a few good ones for a project? Or have you ever run out of disk space and decided that you should probably delete some of the less brilliant photos in your collection? That's exactly what the viewer in Cameraid was written for.

Think of a slide projector: it takes a cassette loaded with slides and shows them on a screen one by one. That's how Cameraid works, except that the "cassette" can hold as many photos as memory allows*.

* Note: Each file will require about 0.5 kB of memory from the Cameraid application. If the photo also has a thumbnail, additional memory will be allocated when the photo is first shown. Thumbnails usually require a few kilobytes, but this depends entirely on the program or camera that created the photo. If you are running the Carbon version under MacOS X, you can pretty much ignore the memory requirements, as MacOS X virtual memory takes care of allocating enough memory for Cameraid.

Opening Images

When you open an image file or drop one onto the Cameraid icon or viewer window, that file is added to the list of images. If you drop a whole folder or disk full of images into Cameraid, all the enclosed images will be added to the list.

The order in which the photos are added to the viewer can be controlled from the Preferences window. To duplicate the behavior of older versions, select "After Current Photo" and "Show Last".

Each file is added only once into the viewer. This allows for some interesting tricks using grading, since files already in the viewer retain their old grade and the new ones get a grade of zero by default. It's an easy way to exclude a set of files: add those files to the viewer first, then decrease all the grades by one and add the complete set of files. The files you want now have a grade of zero and the ones you don't want have -1.

Selecting Images

When the going gets tough, the tough get going. Here's the part of Cameraid that is probably the toughest to grasp, if you haven't read the manual.

Below is a screen snapshot of the Cameraid viewer window. The main area usually displays the image or a thumbnail view of it (in this case, my dog, Otto).

The top margin shows the size (in kilobytes), type (JPEG, PICT, TIFF, MooV) and name of the file (in this case 1006-13.37.

The number in the middle (zero) indicates the grade that you have given this image. I call this number the grade, because it's a little bit like a school grade. Anything less than zero belongs to one group (negative grades) and anything greater than or equal to zero belongs in the other (positive grades). You usually change the grade by using the + and - keys. Try it to get a feel of how it works.

The idea is that you can go through your images and give them grades and then use the grades to decide what to do with the images.

The two numbers at the right margin show the number of the current image and the total number of files that are open in the viewer.

Useful tip: if you click on the top margin with the mouse, Cameraid will ask the Finder to reveal the file. If you are wondering where a certain file is located, clicking on the top margin is usually the fastest way to find out. Note that Cameraid doesn't switch you into the Finder, so this may happen underneath the Viewer window and may not be immediately visible to you.

Let's say you have 100 images to start with and you can only print up to 20 of them. With Cameraid, you can go through the images and each time you see one that you don't like, you can hit the minus (or arrow down) key to give it a negative grade. Once you have gone through all your images, you can remove the negative scores and see how many are left.

Tip: Sorting by grade is also useful for grouping interesting photos together. If you want to flip between two photos, give them identical grades (different from any others photos) and then sort the photos in the viewer.

The bottom margin is used to display photo info. Most digital cameras store some kind of information about the photo in the JPEG file. The above example is from an Agfa ePhoto 1680, but it's very similar to what you would see displayed from many other digital cameras. In this case, you can see the exposure time (1/90 seconds), aperture (F8.0), zoom setting (x2.0), JPEG quality setting and the date and time when the photo was taken. The window isn't quite wide enough to show my full E-mail address (many cameras allow you to customize this string) or the camera firmware version numbers. The information shown depends a lot on the camera that was used to take the photo.

Most of the data is self-explanatory, but if you see data like this: [5:2], the numbers indicate the metering mode and exposure program used for the photo.

The scroll bar does not scroll the image. In fact, there's no way in Cameraid to scroll the images: they are always centered in the window. The scroll bar selects the currently displayed image from all the open files. (Being able to pan zoomed images is a popular request and is very high on my "to do" list, when I redesign the viewer.)


Use the View menu to scale the photos.

Note: With QuickTime Movies, return, enter and space start and stop movie playback instead of toggling the thumbnail mode.


If the photo is too large to fit into the viewer, "Scale To Fit" will reduce it so that it fits.

"Binary Scaling" speeds up viewing of photos that need to be scaled down.

It has two effects:

  1. Display of photos at half, quarter or eighth size is accelerated significantly. Cameraid will display 50%, 25% or 12% above the top left corner of the photo to indicate that binary scaling acceleration was used for the display.
  2. Combined with "Scale To Fit", instead of making the photo just small enough to fit inside the window, it is reduced further to one of the accelerated sizes. These two modes combined result in very fast display of images. It's only slightly slower than viewing just the thumbnails and the photos are displayed at a higher resolution.

    Note: binary scaling uses more memory than normal scaling and may not be performed, if Cameraid is low on memory. Allocate more memory for Cameraid or disable binary scaling, if memory is low.

    Tip: use the B key on the keyboard to toggle binary scaling on and off. This keyboard shortcut is used without the command key and does not appear in the menu.

For fastest viewing, use the thumbnail view. Most photos from digital cameras already have embedded thumbnail JPEGs. Thumbnails are lower resolution versions of the photo. Use "tab", "return", "enter" or "space" to toggle between thumbnail and full image viewing. Three different scale factors are provided for thumbnails.


Keyboard Control

You can use the scroll bar and menu commands to navigate and use the viewer, but in most cases it's much easier to use the keyboard shortcuts. This may sound like something from pre-Macintosh computers, but in fact there's something to be said about simple, single-key commands when you want to accomplish something quickly. Here's a list of shortcuts (the same window can be opened from the Help menu in Cameraid):

The keys were chosen so that you can use the numeric keypad to browse the images and increase and decrease the grades. The enter key is also conveniently located so that you can switch between thumbnail view and full image view. Alternatively, you can use the arrow keys.

To quickly rename a single file, hit the R key. If you just want to add something to the file name, you can use the right arrow key to get to the end of the old name, then type the new name and enter to make the change.

Drag and Drop

If you click and drag anywhere in the image area (even the white space around the image), you'll notice that a gray circle can be dragged around. This circle represents the image file and you can drag it anywhere just as if you were dragging a file icon in the Finder.

The control and shift keys on the keyboard are used to select more than one file at a time for dragging. The control key corresponds to all images with negative grades and the shift key is used for all the others. This means that if you simply want to move all the files into a single folder, hold down control and shift and drag from the image viewer window to the folder you want.

If you haven't touched the grades (they start out at zero), holding down shift when starting the drag will cause all the files to be dragged (since they all have zero grades).

The shape being dragged gives you information on what is being dragged. A large circle means that all the files are being dragged (control+shift held down). A square with a plus sign in the middle means that files with grades greater or equal to zero are being dragged. Similarly a square with a minus sign in the middle means that files with negative grades are being dragged. If nothing happens when you shift- or control-drag, there probably aren't any files with suitable grades. A small shape indicates that only one file is affected while a larger shape means that more than one file will be dragged.

If some of the files have identical names and you try to drop them into the same folder, the Finder will be unable to complete the operation. You'll get an error message and nothing will be done. The batch processor in Cameraid can be used to move or copy files into the same folder without having to worry about naming conflicts.

The same keys (control and shift) are also used in conjunction with JPEG transforms, shortcuts and (optionally) the batch processor.


The photos in the viewer can be sorted. The original order is preserved when sorting entries with identical grades, names or sizes. If you first sort the files by name and then by grade, files with identical grades will be sorted together, but they will be in alphabetical order.

Sorting names numerically means that photos with names like J1, J2 and J10 will be sorted in their natural, numerical order instead of the straightforward alphabetical ordering: J1, J10, J2.

In addition to the EXIF-stored photo date, files can also be sorted based on the creation or last modification date.

To reverse sorting order (going from highest to lowest), select the "Reverse Sorting Order" item and then perform your search. You may want to uncheck the reverse option once the sort is complete.

Saving Collections

The collection of open files and their grades can be saved into a document.

A collection document will contain aliases (or links) to the files, so it takes very little space and can often find the files even if they are moved. Opening a collection will add all the files in that saved collection to the viewer. For instance, you can combine two collections by opening them both. Grades are saved with the collection.

Warning: only aliases to the photos are stored in the collection. If you discard the originals or move them in such a way that Cameraid can no longer find them, they will be removed from the collection when the collection file is opened. Make sure you understand the difference between the original photo files and the saved collection before you use this feature.

Note: MacOS aliases are used to used to track the files. Sometimes aliases will actually point to the wrong file or may they may fail to "resolve" at all. In these cases Cameraid uses the information it has on the file to try to find the best possible match. This involves searching hard drives and may take a while.

Finding Duplicate Files

As a new function in version 1.3, Cameraid is capable of going through the list of opened photos and Quicktime movies and finding any exact duplicates. This is especially useful if some of the files on your hard drive have been accidentally duplicated or you have downloaded photos from the Internet and your collection contains multiple copies of some photos.

The Duplicate File Locator window opens from the Edit menu.

Cameraid compares the data stored in the files. It doesn't try to see what the photo or movie really looks like. This means that an optimized or progressified version of a photo will almost always appear different from the original. One way to avoid this problem is to keep all your photos deprogressified (for best viewing speed).

If a photo has been edited in any way, it will be considered different from the original.

If Finder icons or thumbnails have been added, these are stored in the resource fork of the file, which is not considered when the files are compared. A file with a custom icon will thus look the same to Cameraid as the same file without an icon.

Filenames are ignored and do not have to match.

Here's what the different options do:

  • Reordering will place any duplicated files first in the viewer and any unique files. For any file with duplicates, the first one found is considered the original and comes first, followed by the duplicates. The order is otherwise the same as it was before the operation took place.
  • As mentioned above, an original is the first file of a set of duplicates. It is assumed that you want to keep at least one copy, so you can set the grade of this file to whatever you want.
  • Duplicates are the second, third etc file in a set of identical files. It's assumed that you want to get rid of these, so usually you would set a negative grade, like -1.
  • Unique files are files without any duplicates. You could just as well use the same grade as for originals, but it's easier to tell when the duplicates end, if you set their grade to something different - like 1.

If you want to delete or move duplicates into the trash, set their grade to -1 and use a batch processor from the shortcut menu to move or delete photos with negative grades into the trash. Use the reordering functionality, if you want and easy way to find out which files were duplicates.

The Duplicate File Locator has been tested with up to around 100 000 files and while it took a while to do and required tens of megabytes of RAM allocated to Cameraid, it worked flawlessly. Cameraid displays progress information if it takes more than a few seconds to find the duplicates. The process can be stopped at any point with no ill side-effects.

Note: Cameraid doesn't do a byte per byte compare of data. Instead, if compares files with equal size by calculating a 32 bit "has value" or "cyclical redundancy checksum". If the computed value matches, the files are considered identical. There is an extremely slim chance that two different files of the same length will have the same CRC value.

Rotating and Transforming JPEG Files Losslessly

Actual Transforms

JPEG is what is called a "lossy" compression method. This means that when you compress an image with the JPEG method and then open that file again, you'll almost never get the same image back again. If a file is opened and saved enough times, the changes begin to accumulate and can visibly degrade the quality of the file.

It is possible to perform some limited operations on JPEG images without degrading the image quality. Cameraid incorporates special program code from the Independent JPEG group. This code allows you to rotate and mirror JPEG images in a way that preserves image quality.

The operations are also reversible. This means that if you rotate an image clockwise, a counterclockwise rotation will restore the image to what it was.

The letter F is used above to demonstrate the effects of the transformations.

Note that the file size will usually change a bit. JPEG compression is done in two steps and the second (Huffman compression) step allows for some optimization to be done without degrading image quality. Cameraid will also perform this optimization on transformed images. (Or you can perform the optimization transform, which will not change the image pixels in any way, but will try to make the file a bit smaller.)

As mentioned in the drag and drop section of the manual, the shift and control keys can be used to apply the transforms to more than one image at a time. This is useful if you want to save a few KB of disk space and optimize the compression of many image files in one operation.

Caveat: Cameraid will try to perform JPEG transforms on PICT files as well. If the PICT files is not compressed with JPEG or JPEG was used in strips (PhotoShop tends to do this), the operation will usually fail and Cameraid will leave the file unchanged. Under some conditions, Cameraid may fail to notice that the file contained more than a single JPEG compressed image and save the transformed JPEG and overwrite the original image. For this reason, if you plan on transforming PICT, make sure you have a backup copy to avoid losing data.

Caveat: JPEG compression is done using 8x8 pixel blocks. If the image dimensions are not a multiple of 8, some incomplete blocks are used at the right and bottom edges of the image. Some of the transforms will be unable to operate perfectly on files like that. Fortunately, the imperfections were designed so that most of the image is transformed correctly and if the inverse transform is performed, the original image is restored without loss. All known raw digital camera image JPEG files have dimensions that are multiples of 8 and will transform perfectly. You'll usually only have trouble with cropped or scaled digital photos. You may also notice this when a JFIF preview thumbnail is rotated.

Caveat: JPEG transforms require a lot of temporary memory to store the intermediate stages of the operation. Cameraid can use application memory, system memory and even hard disk space to store the intermediate data, but if the disk is used, you should expect that the operation can take a very long time (go take a coffee break or even have lunch while the computer is crunching). Megapixel class images (about 1280x960) will usually require about 6-8MB of free memory.

Optimize, Deprogressify and Progressify

It's possible to reorganize a JPEG file so that the photo that it represents doesn't change at all, but the encoding of the data is changed.

Progressive scan photos are stored as increasingly accurate representations of the photo. If downloaded over a slow link, a browser may first show a blurry version, then a slightly sharper version etc until the full photo resolution is reached. Because of the difference in encoding, most viewers will display progressive scan photos slower than the more common "sequential scan" JPEGs. In most cases though, it just happens that progressive scan photos will compress even smaller (without any loss in quality!) than there more sequential counterparts.

Thus, for the smallest possible files, you may want to use the Progressify command.

The Deprogressify command is excellent for restoring photos to sequential scanning and improving viewing speed by a factor of 2-3.

The optimize command will first deprogressify a photo and optimize the compression as well as it can. If the new file is smaller than the original, the original data is replaced. If it's larger, the original data is kept untouched. Optimize will usually not change progressive scan photos, as they are usually smaller than what what can be achieved with the sequential scanning order.

To put it simply, here's what you would do with these commands:


Reduce the sizes of your photos without making them progressive scan.


Speed up viewing by removing progressive scanning.


Make the smallest possible photos with the cost of slower drawing speed.

Customizing Cameraid

Creating And Using Shortcuts

The shortcuts menu is a bit like the Apple menu, but it's specific to the Cameraid application.

To add items to the Shortcuts menu in Cameraid, make sure there's a folder called "Shortcuts" in the same folder with the Cameraid application and either place an alias to the item or the original item itself in that folder.

The best way to learn how to use shortcuts is to try it out and see how it works.

The rest of this section gives an accurate description of how shortcuts work. If you don't like overly technical text, you may want to skip the whole thing and just go ahead and use the shortcuts folder and menu. Read the section on special characters (below), if you wish to add keyboard shortcuts to menu items.

Here's how various items affect the shortcuts menu:

  • Folders will not appear on the menu, but any items in the folders will be treated as if they were in the shortcuts folder itself and separate with gray lines from other items. In other words, use folders to group files similar items together.
  • Aliases to folders will be added directly to the menu, regardless of the contents of the original folder. When you select a folder alias from the Shortcuts menu, Cameraid will behave as if you had dropped that folder onto the Cameraid program icon: all the PICT and JPEG image files in it will be opened.
  • For all other items, the items are added to the menu and aliases behave just like the original item when that item is selected from the menu:
  • Application items can behave in several different ways, but in general the application will be launched and can open files from the viewer.
  • PICT and JPEG files are opened into the Cameraid viewer when the menu item is selected..
  • Batch processor files will either be opened or executed immediately without showing the settings window first. What happens depends on the "Execute Immediately from Shortcuts Menu" setting on the Advanced panel of the batch processor document.
  • Other files will behave as if they had been double-clicked in the Finder.

Here's what happens when you select an application item from the shortcuts menu:

  1. If the application isn't running, it will be launched.
  2. If the viewer window isn't the front window, no files will be opened by the application.
  3. If the shift key is held down when you pull down the menu, files with grades greater or equal to zero will be sent to the application. The application will open them, if it can.
  4. If the control key is held down, files with grades less than zero will be sent to the application. (Note that you can hold down both shift and control to open all the files regardless of their grade).
  5. If neither the shift or control key is held down, the currently visible image file will be sent to the application.

Note that AppleScripts are also applications, so if you are good at scripting, you can easily enhance Cameraid with your own scripts. An AppleScript called "Trash Photos/6" is provided in the "Extras" folder. This AppleScript will move the files given to it into the trash. It's works better than dragging the same files into the trash, because it can deal with multiple files that have the same filename. Move it into the Shortcuts folder and restart Cameraid to use it as a shortcut.

Note: Applications do not unfortunately always come to the front when you first launch them. I haven't been able to get around this behavior. Once launched, applications will come to the front when you select the shortcut menu item for the application or for a document that belongs to that application.

Special Characters in the Shortcuts Folder

Cameraid can interpret certain characters in the filenames to add keyboard shortcuts to the menu items and to disable others. If you end the file name with a slash and a single character, that character will become the keyboard shortcut for the menu item. You should avoid keys that already have a meaning (cmd-O, cmd-S, cmd-Q, etc.) and it may not be possible to use characters that require the option or control key to be held down.

If the file name starts with an opening parenthesis, it will be displayed in gray and you will not be able to select it from the menu. This is useful if you just want to add some text to the menu (such as a warning before items that could potentially be dangerous items).


  • An alias of JPEGView named JPEGView/J would add a shortcut for JPEGView. You can view an image full screen in JPEGView if you hit command-J from the Cameraid viewer. You can open all 0 grade images using command-shift-J. The control key can be used (to select negative grades.
  • Similarly, an item named PhotoShop/P might be used to launch PhotoShop.
  • An alias to your "photos" folder will allow you to open all your photos with a single menu command.
  • You can open Cameraid documentation directly from the Shortcuts menu.

Customizing Cameraid Resources (Advanced Topic)

You can customize Cameraid by placing a "Cameraid Resources" file in the same folder as Cameraid. It will override resources in the Cameraid application. This is useful if you have changed any resources in Cameraid and you want to keep those modifications separate from Cameraid itself. Some examples are given below:

  • The template for custom photo icons can be modified to your liking.
  • Command key shortcuts for menus can be modified by editing the MENU resources with ResEdit.
  • Larger type sizes can be enabled in Cameraid.

There's is a sample "Cameraid Resources" files in the "Extras" folder. Move it into the same folder with Cameraid and restart Cameraid to use it. You have to quit Cameraid if you wish to edit or add resources within this file.

Larger Type Sizes

You can easily modify Cameraid to use larger typefaces in the batch processor and digital camera control window. Just drag and drop the "Cameraid Resources" file from Larger Fonts for Dialogs in the Extras folder into the same folder with the Cameraid application. The next time you start Cameraid, a 12 or 14 point font will be used instead of the default 10 point font. Even larger sizes can be achieved by modifying the Cameraid Resources file with ResEdit.

Naming Patterns

Cameraid file name patterns will always generate unique file names, so that old files are not overwritten. Even if you try to rename all your files "Photo", Cameraid will append numbers to the file names where necessary to keep them unique in each folder. In effect, if you like sequentially numbered files that all start with the same text, you can just type whatever you want into the pattern and it will work just fine. Most people find it convenient to name the files based on the date and time when the photo was taken, so that's what the default rename pattern will do.

Two systems of naming files exist in Cameraid: the old : and single character system and the new system that uses words within pairs of curly braces { }. In the table below, the new names are given first with the old style last, if it exists.

EXIF or JFIF APP marker information in photos is used whenever possible. This means that the date and time information in the pattern is the exact time when the photo was taken. Make sure the clock on your camera is correctly set. If no information is available, the creation date of the file is used.

Pattern options (usually length) can be entered after a colon within the pattern. Use a length of zero to indicate that the length should be determined automatically.

For examples on how to use the old style rename patterns, refer to the quick reference on the rename panel of the batch processor. The most common new patterns are given in a pop-up menu next to the file name or caption field.

Date and time related patterns:


Day of month, 2 digits by default, use {day:0} or :0D to eliminate leading zero.


{day}.{month}.{year} - {h}.{m}.{s}
11.02.99 - 15.13.53
11.02.99 - 15.18.21
12.02.99 - 01.52.40
15.05.99 - 16.01.37

{day} {mon} - {h12}.{m}{apm}m
11 February - 03.13pm
11 February - 03.18pm
12 February - 01.52am
03 July - 06.49pm


{day} {mon:3} - {h12}.{m}{apm}m
11 Feb - 03.13pm
11 Feb - 03.18pm
12 Feb - 01.52am
03 Jul - 06.49pm

{weekday} - {h}.{m}
Friday - 01.52
Saturday - 16.01
Saturday - 17.11
Monday - 21.26

{weekday:2} - {h}.{m}
Fr - 01.52
Sa - 16.01
Sa - 17.11
Mo - 21.26



Month as a number, defaults to two digits.


Year, using two digits by default. Use {year:4} or :4Y to force the use of four digits or {year:0} :0Y to automatically use any number of digits necessary.


The name of the month. In an English language system, the names would be January, February, ...


The name of the day of week. In an English language system, the names would be Monday, Tuesday, ...


The hour, using a 24-hour clock and two digits by default.


The hour, using a 12-hour clock.


If an AM or PM string is specified in the system (use the Date & Time control panel), this string is entered. Use of these patterns allow for local country-specific strings for AM and PM. Note that if the system uses a 24 hour clock, no string at all will be produced.


A single character a or p, denoting AM or PM. If capital letters are used in the pattern, the result will also be a capital letter.





Exposure-related patterns (especially useful in HTML captions)


Exposure time in seconds expressed as a decimal number for long exposures or a fraction for short ones. The exact format may be dependent on the camera model.



Aperture: capital F followed by a number to denote the aperture (or F-stop) of the lens.



Focal length expressed in millimeters or a zoom factor expressed as a multiplier of the widest angle setting. Interpretation is somewhat camera-dependent, as CCD sizes vary.




Character denoting flash use. The default character is @, but you can replace it by placing the desired character after the pattern.



Filename related patterns (especially useful for links within HTML captions)


The original file name. For file name patterns, adding a number to the pattern will cut off that many characters from the start of the original file name.

Also, if the "ends with" option is used for selecting files to operate on, the matching part at the end is removed. If you looked for files ending with .jpg, using the {original} pattern would exclude that part of the file name. This makes it possible to remove file type extensions from file names.

Original file name: Hello123.jpg
{original:4} -> o123.jpg

"Ends With": .jpg
Original file name: Hello123.jpg
{original} -> Hello123


Name of the file created from the "copy" panel, if any. Only available for HTML captions.

Caption pattern:
{month}/{day} {h}::{m}</A> <A HREF=origs/{original}>(O)

02/11 15:13</A> <A HREF="origs/Orig1.jpg">(O)

02/11 15:13 (O)


Name of the file created from the "scale" panel, if any. Only available for HTML captions.


Name of the target photo from the HTML. Only available for HTML captions.


Name of the thumbnail file. Only available for HTML captions.

Size-related patterns (especially useful in HTML captions)


Size of the resulting file in kilobytes.

P {number} - {size}k
P 1 - 145k
P 2 - 172k
P 3 - 96k
P 4 - 278k


Size of the original file in kilobytes.


Width of the resulting photo in pixels

P {number} - {width} x {height}.jpg
P 1 - 600 x 800.jpg
P 2 - 800 x 600.jpg
P 3 - 800 x 600.jpg
P 4 - 1024 x 768.jpg


Height of the resulting photo in pixels


Width of the original photo in pixels


Height of the original photo in pixels

Patterns to differentiate otherwise identical file names


If a folder would otherwise contain two identical file names, an index can be used to distinguish these. These are numbers starting from 1 and the count is reset for each otherwise unique pattern.

{weekday} {index}
Friday 1
Saturday 1
Saturday 2
Monday 1


Similar to the {index} pattern, but letters are used instead of numbers.

{weekday} {alpha}
Friday a
Saturday a
Saturday b
Monday a


A running index number for all the processed photos, regardless of file name and location.

{number} {weekday}
1 Thursday
2 Thursday
3 Friday
4 Saturday

{number:4} {weekday}
0001 Thursday
0002 Thursday
0003 Friday
0004 Saturday


Denotes the beginning of an optional parts. Optional parts are only used if the filename would otherwise conflict with another existing name.

{weekday}:( {index}:)
Saturday 1


Denotes the end of an optional part.


A single digit from the {index} pattern. This is probably the easiest to use pattern of all.

Photo #+#
Photo 0+1
Photo 0+2
Photo 0+3

File typing


File type extension, including a period. File type is automatically determined.



File type code. This is a four character code normally used internally to determine file types.




These patterns enter these special characters literally.

Photo :#{number}
Photo #1
Photo #2
Photo #3

Batch Processing Images

The batch processor window may seem a bit intimidating, but it gives you several very powerful tools for working with your image files and enhancing them.

Once you come up with a set of useful settings, you should probably save it for later use. If the command is used frequently, then the shortcuts folder is probably the best place for storing the batch processor settings file. In fact, Cameraid comes with a number of useful preset files.

Note: The batch processing window has balloon help available. Just turn on the balloon help from the help menu and move the mouse over the item you are interested in.

Note: You should probably experiment with the settings while you are reading this section. The best way to do so is to copy a few photos so that you can play with them without having to worry about damaging the originals. You only need a few files (half a dozen is plenty) to learn how the batch processor (BP) works.

Drop the files you want to experiment with onto the Cameraid icon to open them in the viewer window. The BP always operates only on files that are open in the viewer. If there are no files open, executing the processor will open a file dialog, prompting you to open a file for processing.

To start with a clean slate, use the "New Batch Processor" command from the file menu.

Whenever you create a new BP window, the default settings are such that if you hit "Execute", nothing will be done. In order to accomplish something useful, you need to turn on some of the options.


The "Select" Panel

The select panel can be used to select a subset of the files that are open in the viewer. The default settings are such that all files will be selected.

You can limit the BP so that it operates on a single file only (the one that is shown in the viewer), or based on the grade that you have given to the photos. The "Based on Keyboard Modifiers" makes the selection based on what keys you are holding down when the Execute button is clicked (or when the Shortcuts menu was pulled down to auto-execute the document). So summarize: no keys means one file, shift means grades 0, control means grade < 0.

Sometimes you may want to create JPEG versions of PICT files or PICT versions of JPEG files. For this purpose, it's nice to be able to make the BP operate only on certain types of files. By default, both PICT and JPEG files are operated on.

If you are renaming photos, it may sometimes be convenient to operate only on files that contain the time stamp that tell Cameraid when the photo was taken. Check the "Only Files with Photo Info" to restrict BP operations to files with time stamps.

You can also look for a special string within the filename or at the end of the file name. This is pretty much similar to how Find File works. If you are looking for files that end with the same string, then the "original name" of the file is considered to be without that extension. This allows you to strip or modify file extensions.

Files can also be selected based on their size on disk. Use the popup menu to select the condition and enter numbers in kilobytes into the field(s) after it. The default is to process files of any size. You could use this feature to operate only on really large or small files. Useful applications include the ability to discard thumbnail-sized files from the viewer (see the Files panel for details) and the ability to compress really big files using more aggressive compression.


The "Rename" Panel

This panel will rename the files that are open in the viewer and have been selected with the "Select" panel. Click on the "Smart Rename" box to enable file renaming.

A short summary of the old pattern system is given below the pattern. These patterns consist mostly of : and a letter. For instance, :D will insert the day of month the photo was taken on into the pattern.

The new patterns are summarized in the popup menu next to the pattern and consist of curly braces { } and words. The advantage of longer pattern names is that there's more room for extension than with single character pattern names.

For detailed information on how rename patterns work, scroll back a bit and read the chapter devoted to rename patterns.

The default rename pattern looks complicated, so let's have a more detailed look at it first.

The month and day are appended into a single four-digit number. Then a minus sign is entered as is and the hour and minute of when the photo was taken are entered, separated by a period.

The last three components of the pattern are :(, {alpha} and :). The parentheses are special and mean that anything between them will only be used if the file name isn't already unique without whatever is inside the parentheses. So, if you took three photos on September 15th at 10:15 AM and then two more a minute later, the file names would be:

Note that the files are all in the same folder. If they were in different folders, there wouldn't be any clashes in the naming and you would end up with three files named "0915-10.15" and two named "0915-10.16".

Hit the "Execute" button (or return or Enter on the keyboard) to perform the batch rename.

Warning: Renaming is not undoable. The pattern will in most cases overwrite the original names of the files, so if you aren't sure you want to rename your files, make sure you are trying this on an extra copy of your files.

If you don't like using letters to distinguish photos that were taken on the same minute, you could add the time in seconds or an index number to make the file names different. If your pattern does not produce unique file names, Cameraid will append numbers to the name until it comes up with a unique file name.

Note: If the file does not contain a time stamp from a digital camera, the creation date of the file will be used as the time for renaming the file.

You can control the number of digits in numeric fields by adding a numbers into the patterns. For instance, the pattern {year} gives you only the last two digits of the year, which would be "00" for year 2000. To be really year 2000 compliant, you might want to use {year:4} instead. To be year 10000 compliant, you would use {year:0} to let Cameraid decide how many digits to use.

The original file name can also be used while renaming. If you have named all your files according to the contents only, you could rename them so that they start or end with the date, but still contain the original title as well (remember though that file names have a length limit, so this may fail for very long file names).

For example:

{month}{day} {original}

The pattern above adds the month and date (using four numbers) before the original file name and inserts a space in between the date and original file name. Assuming you had three photos taken on April first and originally called "Apple", Orange" and "Banana", the file names would become "0401 Apple", "0401 Orange", "0401 Banana".

As it says on the rename panel, the {original} pattern only gives you a part of the original file name. If you were looking for a certain suffix (such as .jpg) using the Select panel, then the suffix will not be included with the pattern. This allows you to strip or change suffixes.

The {weekday} and {monthname} patterns are used to specify the day of the week and name of the month. The names come from your system file, so if they will be in the language you are using. A single digit can be used to limit the length of the string. For instance, {weekday:3} would give you the first three letters of the day of the week and similarly {monthname:3} would give you the first three letters of the name of the month.


The "Copy" Panel

The "Copy" panel allows you to process or copy images without scaling them in any way. If the "Image Processing" option is turned off, the original data of the file (whatever it is) is used for the copy. This is very convenient when you have opened a number of files (with possibly many identical file names) into the viewer and need to copy them all into a single folder.

The file name pattern works the same way as the rename pattern. Use the rename panel for quick reference on how file name patterns are constructed.

"Target Folder"

If the "Target Folder" check box is not checked, the copies will be made into the same folders with the original items. When it is checked, Cameraid will ask you to select a folder for the copies. If you cancel the dialog and do not select a folder, Cameraid will prompt you for the folder again when it is needed. This allows you to set up a batch processor that will ask what folder to use each time it is run. It also allows you to set up things so that the target folder is always the same folder.

Image Processing

If the "Image Processing" panel is enabled, the image will be drawn into a buffer, optionally enhanced and then usually compressed into a JPEG again.

The "File Quality" setting allows you to control the quality of the file. There are two special cases for the file quality value. A zero value means that you only wanted to see what the processor would do and don't want to create a file (a sort of dry run). A quality setting of 101 will create a PICT file without JPEG compression. The file will be big, but if you want to further process the images in some other application, it's probably the best format to use, since the (lossy) JPEG compression is not used at all.

In addition to a quality setting, a file size limit may be specified. If the default setting produces a file that is within the limit, nothing else is done. If the file size is too big, the quality setting is reduced so that either the file is smaller than the limit or the lowest allowable quality setting is reached.

The image processors in Cameraid are mostly automatic. You select which ones to use and Cameraid will then decide how to use it. The filters have been designed so that they improve photos in most cases and only rarely make it worse than it was (a matter of opinion, of course).


Low contrast photos are enhanced so that the shadows are darker and the highlights are brighter.


Photos with an overall dark tone (especially around the center of the photo) will be made brighter, without significantly changing the lightness or darkness of shadows and highlights. Similarly, very bright photos can be darkened a bit. In most cases the changes will enhance the photo by showing details that were previously not visible. In many cases, enhanced shadow areas will also show compression artifacts.

The automatic gamma curve control is probably the most controversial enhancer in Cameraid. If you don't generally like what it does or find it unpredictable, simply turn it off.

"Color Balance"

In some cases the white balance of the image will be off. This means that the darkest shadows will not be totally black and the brightest highlights will not be white. This setting will adjust the color balance of the image so that shadows are closer to black and highlights are closer to a true white. Highly recommended for cameras such as the Olympus D-300L (which tends to produce bluish images). For some types of color problems, the color balance will not have an effect. If your camera already produces images with satisfying colors, you may want to turn this option off - in some cases Cameraid will make the colors less realistic.


If sharpening is turned on, you can select from three different levels of sharpening. If you are not scaling the image to a smaller size, the first setting is probably best, as it produces the most subtle sharpening effect.

Cameraid's sharpening filter has been specially designed so that it doesn't enhance JPEG compression block boundaries (those are usually the first things to show up when you really sharpen a JPEG image) and so that the color contents of the image is not sharpened. Human color vision has much lower resolution and so it doesn't make sense to sharpen the color information (you would otherwise often end up with brightly colored dots as a result of the sharpening operation).

"Clean up Colors"

This will slightly reduce colored fringes and spots that often occur in digital photos. For instance, many cameras will create a slight bluish fringe around the branches of a tree, if the tree is black and the sky is mostly gray or white.

This filter smooths (or blurs) the color information of the photo without touching the luminosity. The amount of blurring is such that the human eye usually can not notice it, except that for the occasional brightly colored spots or lines that are "toned down".

"Artifact Reduction"

This is a special filter that looks for certain kinds of problems that are caused by CCD (and probably CMOS) image sensors in digital cameras. It looks for either horizontal or vertical lines or blocks close to high contrast borders in images. The "Advanced" settings panel is used to control which way type of artifacts Cameraid will try to eliminate. The default setting is good for the Agfa ePhoto 1280, video camera CCDs (such as the ones in the Sony Mavica FD5 and FD7) and live video or television frame grabs. The other orientation works for higher end megapixel CCDs (such as the one in the Nikon Coolpix™ 900, Agfa ePhoto™ 1680 and Olympus D-600L).

Agfa ePhoto 1280 users are highly encouraged to use this filter, if the Agfa PhotoGenie™ filter has not already been applied. The effect of the artifact reduction filter is roughly similar to what the PhotoGenie™ process does,but it doesn't sharpen or simplify the image as much (giving you more options as to what to do with the photo later on).

This filter works well for many 3 million pixel cameras as well, although the orientation of the filter may have to be turned using the advanced panel. Large CCDs tend to be accessed in an interleaved fashion and staircase-like artifacts may be present. Experiment for best results.

"50% Reduced Filter & Adjustment Effect"

If you feel that Cameraid is making too extreme adjustments to your photos, you can turn on the "50% Reduced Filter & Adjustment Effect" option. This option affects everything except the "Artifact Reduction" filter. Instead of making the full adjustment to the photo Cameraid will only do half the adjustment.

If your photos already look great and you just want to give them a little extra zing, this option may be useful to you. Some photos of bright red flowers and other brightly colored images may oversaturate slightly as a result of the gamma, luminance and color balance settings. For photos like this, the 50% effect may produce the ideal image.

"Recompress Only when File Size Is Reduced"

When this setting is enabled, photo enhancement is automatically disabled. The photo will be recompressed as is and if the file size is larger than the original, the original data will be used. This is extremely useful when some files are compressed with a very high quality setting.


The "Scale" Panel

The "Scale" panel is similar to the "Copy" panel except for a few added parameters. Another difference is that when you use this panel, the image is always uncompressed and compressed again.

There are several other (minor) differences in how the "Copy" and "Scale" panels work. For instance, the default setting is that JFIF (JPEG) thumbnails are not created for scaled images. Other aspects are controlled through the "Advanced" panel.


The first field specifies the scale factor for the new image. The default is 25%, but you can use size from 1% up. 100% is the same as the original size, 200% would be double size, etc.

Note: If you enlarge an image, Cameraid will require a lot more memory than when you are reducing the size of the image, because it needs temporarily create a full size original of the image and a scaled up version. Make sure there's plenty of memory available for Cameraid (both application and system memory can be used).

"Maximum Width" & "Maximum Height"

No matter what scale factor you specify, the maximum width and height are always enforced. The image is always scaled so that its aspect ratio is unchanged. If the image would be 1280 by 960 pixels, but the maximum width and height are both set to 640 pixels, then the scaled image will be 640 by 480 pixels.

If you need to create thumbnails with certain dimensions, you can set the scale factor to anything large enough (say 400%) and limit the size by using the pixel dimensions only. For web pages, anything between 100 and 200 pixels is usually good for thumbnails.

"Copy EXIF/JFIF Photo Info from Original"

Photo information tags from digital cameras are always included with full size copies. Keep this option on to include the exposure time, time stamp etc. even with scaled files. Turn this option off to minimize the size of the resulting file.


The "HTML" Panel

The HTML panel allows you to create a web page with a table of thumbnails and links from the thumbnails to the original image files.

The HTML generator isn't very smart, so the files have to be correctly located for the web page to work. By default, it assumes

The basic idea is that the "Photos Folder" and "Thumbnails Folder" are relative to the location of the index.html file. Cameraid doesn't check if this is actually true, so if you accidentally put the thumbnails in the wrong folder, you can move them to the thumbs folder and the HTML file should work correctly.

Once you have the HTML file, you can either edit with a plain text editor (if you know HTML) or open it into a dedicated HTML editor. Cameraid creates Claris Home Page files by default, but the files can be opened in any HTML-capable editor and the type can be changed from the "Files" panel.

The caption you enter is treated like a rename pattern, but it's not used as a filename. Instead, it's presented under the thumbnail and it is part of the hyperlink to the photo. You can use HTML tags such as <BR> (for a line break). If you do not want the caption to be a part of the link, start the caption with </A> (there will be an extra </A> after the caption, but browsers will ignore it).

The {original} and {number} patterns are particularly useful: if you want your photos numbered and titled with the filenames, use a pattern like this: "({number}) {original}". Remember, you can easily rename files from the Cameraid Viewer by pressing R. If you don't want to rename your original files, make a copy of the files and rename the copies before you create the web page.

Captions can also be used to generate a table where the thumbnail points to one image size and the caption below can contain several links to other sizes of images. See the "Extras" folder for an example of a batch processor that does this.

The thumbnails are arranged into a table. You can control the number of columns in the table freely, but it should probably usually be such that the thumbnails can comfortably fit in a typical window. If the thumbnails are 128 pixels wide and the window is about 640 pixels wide, then four columns will comfortably fit into the window (including some margins).

The thumbnails have a colored link border around them. If you set the thickness to zero, the border disappears, but the user will no longer be able to see which links he/she has already followed, so in most cases the border should probably be at least one or two pixels wide. You can also adjust the spacing between thumbnails.

For the photo links, the name of the copied file is preferred, but if no copy was made, the original file is assumed to be the photo to link to.

Note: JPEG images should end with the .jpg extension and the web page usually has a .html or .htm extension. The {ext} pattern is especially useful, if mixed QuickTime, TIFF and JPEG files are used.

Note: PICT files can generally not be viewed by web browsers, so you should not use the PICT file quality setting for images that you plan to put on the web.

Quick Thumbnails

The Quick Thumbnails option is similar to the "Scale" panel, but allows only limited control over what is done to the image. You can specify the maximum size (in pixels, applied to width and height), rename pattern and destination folder for the thumbnail file. If you need more control, use the "scale" panel.

The HTML file will always consist of a table of thumbnails that act as links to larger size images.

If the "Quick Thumbnails" option is turned on, the table will use these files and their names for the thumbnails on the web page. The links will lead to either scaled images, full size images or the original images. (If scaled images were not made, full size images are used etc.)

If "Quick Thumbnails" were not made, then scaled images are assumed to be the thumbnails. If no scaled images were made, the filenames for the full size or original files are used.


The "Files" Panel

"Execute Immediately from Shortcuts Menu"

When batch processor documents are placed into the shortcuts menu, the default behavior is to simply open the document when it is selected from the menu. If all the settings are in place, it may make more sense to simply execute the batch processor immediately without opening the window first.

To open and modify a BP that has this option enabled, simply open it using the Finder or the Open command in the File menu.

Tip: This option can make working with pre-saved shortcuts a lot smoother.

"Show Images During Processing"

The default is to show enhanced and scaled images in the viewer window. For copied images that a enhanced at full size using the "Copy" panel, the original file is shown first. This allows you to see what changes the enhancer made. The enhanced images are shown before they have been compressed, so what you see may not be exactly what you get.

It takes time to display the images during processing, so for maximum performance, this option should be turned off.

"Add New Files to Viewer with Grade"

If you don't want newly created files to appear in the viewer window, turn this option off. By default, all new images will be added right after the originals. If the original is deleted, it will of course also disappear from the viewer. You can also specify a grade for new images. The default is 1, so that you can easily tell new photos apart from old ones, which will often have the default grade of 0.

"Create Progressive Scan JPEGs"

To make JPEGs load on the web so that the browser displays the image with increasing resolution instead of scanning from top to bottom, turn this option on. Progressive scan JPEGs may also take slightly less space than the equivalent top to bottom scanned JPEGs, but some programs may have difficulty using these files.

"Try to Convert Copied Files to JPEG"

The "Copy" panel will only do an exact copy of the original file if no image processing is performed and this option is turned off. If this option is on, Cameraid will try to extract JPEG data out of the original file and create a JPEG file. Although the image data will still be copied exactly, the file type and creator may be changed and Finder icons and Mac style preview thumbnails may be deleted.

"Change Creator of Original Files"

Enable this option to change the creator of the original file. This controls which application will get launched when you double click on a file icon. For instance,you might want to change some Cameraid JPEG files into Photoshop JPEG files.

"File Creator"

This item sets the creator of the image files that the batch processor creates. The default is to make Cameraid files, so that double-clicking on the file in the Finder will open it into the Cameraid viewer. Only the first four characters of the creator string are used - the rest are there for your reference. The pop up menu contains some common creator strings.

"HTML Creator"

This item sets the creator of the HTML files that the batch processor creates. The default is to make Claris Home Page files. Only the first four characters of the creator string are used - the rest are there for your reference. The pop up menu contains some common creator strings.


The first menu allows you to control what happens to the selected original files in the viewer. You could use this in combination with the select panel to increase or decrease the grades of files that have the right keywords in their filenames. You could also remove all JPEG files smaller than a given size using this menu and the select panel. This is a very powerful feature in Cameraid.

The second menu acts on the original file directly. The file can be moved into the trash (from where it can be recovered) or it can be deleted directly. In most cases you will want to keep the original files for future use. However, if you want to move files instead of copying them, then you can essentially achieve this by making a copy and then deleting the original.

The third item allows you to lock or unlock files. The default is to leave the locking status of the file alone. Locked files are harder to throw into the trash and they are also read-only. A user requested this function so that original photos could be protected against accidental modification.

Tip: To move files from a flash memory card that has been mounted to the desktop, drop the flash memory card icon on the Cameraid icon and execute a batch processor that will copy the files to a folder on your hard disk drive and then delete the original files. The memory card will be clean and ready for use as soon as the files have been copied.

Warning: Once deleted, it may be hard (or even impossible) to recover the deleted file. Flash memory cards usually contain a DOS file system. You can recover deleted images if you have a DOS undelete program. A Cameraid user wrote a program that can recover at least some deleted photos from a memory card. If you are in dire need of such a program, contact me and I'll send you a copy. It is a fairly rough program and is in no way guaranteed to find all the photos on a memory card. A PC file rescue program will probably find more files, so that should be your first choice. It is also limited to recovering JPEG files only.


The "Thumbnails" Panel

This panel controls the creation of thumbnails. Thumbnails are scaled-down versions of the image. Most digital cameras already create a thumbnail that Cameraid can use and show in the viewer, but these thumbnails are usually not visible in the Finder icons or in the standard file dialog as a file preview.

The items in the "Add to Original Files" box control what is done to the files that you have opened into the viewer. The custom finder icons are probably the most useful. They will be displayed in the Finder and in many application if the application can not find a higher resolution preview thumbnail.

Hint: If you don't like the style of the icon that Cameraid creates and you know how to use ResEdit, you can edit icl8 resource id 256 to change the template for new icons (the red color in the template will be replaced by pixels from the scaled image). The best place for the edited icon template is the Cameraid Resources file.

Preview images are somewhat larger and are usually visible in the file dialogs of other applications. Cameraid also prefers Mac style preview images over JPEG previews, so if it can find both, the viewer will show you the Mac style preview. Like the custom icons, Mac style preview are added as resources and will not affect the contents of JPEG files (they will be stripped off, if you upload the file using a raw binary mode instead of MacBinary).

JPEG Preview images are so-called JFIF thumbnails. They are stored within the JPEG data. Cameraid can not replace an existing JFIF thumbnail, but it can add them to files that have either no thumbnails or so-called EXIF thumbnails. Cameraid prefers JFIF over EXIF, so if both exist, the JFIF thumbnail will be shown.

The "Create JPEG Preview with" box affects copied and scaled files. The only type of preview that can immediately be added to those files is the JFIF preview thumbnail. If you want your new files to have custom Finder icons or Mac style preview images, you need to run the new files through another batch processor.


The "Advanced" Panel

Advanced image-enhancement controls are found in this panel. The same settings apply to both full size (copies with enhancement enabled) and scaled images.

"Artifact Reduction"

These settings affect the "Artifact Reduction" filter of the copy and scale panels. The type of artifacts that your images have depend on the type of image sensor that your camera has and can not be determined by Cameraid, so if you want to use the artifact reduction filter, you'll have to select the artifact type.


Horizontal Bars

Vertical Bars

Agfa ePhoto 1280
and some other 1024x768 cameras

Live video
Sony Mavica FD5, FD7

Agfa ePhoto 1680
Nikon CP 900
and other megapixel cameras


The artifacts on most digital still cameras occur because a single CCD image sensor with a color mask is used to capture color images. Most CCDs do not have a sufficient density of red and blue sensor elements to capture all types of images accurately.

If you rotate an image by 90 degrees, the orientation of the artifacts also changes. By default, Cameraid looks at the image dimensions to detect rotated images. Remember that if you have cropped an image from landscape to portrait orientation, Cameraid will (incorrectly) assume that the image has been rotated.

"Color Cast Correction"

Under some conditions the white point of a photo may be correctly set, but the mid tones can still have a color cast. For instance, the Agfa ePhoto 1280 has a tendency to produce indoor photographs with a yellow-green color cast. To compensate for the color cast, select the amount of compensation (usually "some" or "little") and a direction. For the yellow-green cast, correcting towards blue or cyan will usually work best.

Tip: Use the 0 (zero) quality setting to preview the effects of filters on your images. Once you find the right settings, change the quality setting to create the enhanced files.

"Gamma Curve Preference"

The automatic "Gamma" adjustment found in the "Copy" and "Scale" panels works by looking at the image content. If the midtones of the image look a bit dark, the gamma curve will be adjusted so that they become lighter. You can use this popup menu to set your preference. Remember that selecting "light" does not mean that all images will be made lighter: images that are already mostly very light may actually be made darker.


The "Memo" Panel

The memo panel can be used to store notes about the behavior of a particular batch processor document. If you create a batch processor that will be used by others besides yourself, you should probably write some instructions into the memo area and leave the memo panel open when you save the batch processor document.


"Use Navigation Services" only exists in the Classic version. It allows you to select the style of dialog used to open and save files. This is very much a personal preference and in my opinion both the old "Standard File" and the newer "Navigation Services" have their merits. With Carbon and MacOS X, Navigation services are always used.

The "Adjust File Dates Automatically to Photo Date" can be used to modify file creation and modification dates to match the date and time given by the digital camera that took the photo. If no date information is available, the file dates are left unchanged.

Under MacOS X, files are often created "untyped". Cameraid has been modified to recognize these untyped files and can be configured to set the file types correctly when files are being opened. This may be a useful option, if file types matter. Regardless of setting, Cameraid will "pretend" that the file has the correct type, so that the file type of JPEG files is always "JPEG" in the batch processor pattern that represents the file type.

You also have some control over how photos are placed into the viewer and which photo is shown. Note that if the photos already exist in the viewer, their order will not be changed and they will not be added a second time. Also, if all the photos that were opened already existed in the viewer, you are always taken to the last photo, no matter which setting is used.

Automatic photo info will make Cameraid look for photo info in the viewer. If your photos never contain this information or you are not interested in it, you can turn this option off and make Cameraid work a little faster. This command is only available when the viewer window is active.

Automatic Date Adjustment will look for photo information tags and adjust the file dates whenever they are not set to the time when the photo was taken. This can make Cameraid work significantly slower. This command is only available when the viewer window is active.

The viewer preferences are fairly easy to experiment with and are fairly self-explanatory. Contact me if you feel that this part of the manual needs more work.

Menu Command Reference

Note: The Quit item is under the Cameraid menu in MacOS X, when using the Carbon version.

The "New" command will always create a new batch processor with default settings. To open a viewer window, you have to open an image file.

You can have as many batch processor windows open as memory permits, but only one digital camera control window and only one viewer window at a time.

The rename command applies to the viewer window only. Both command-R and R work as shortcuts for this command.

The "Adjust File Dates Now" will go through all the images in the viewer window and change their creation and modification dates to when the photo was taken, if the file contains the necessary time stamp information. This command is only available when the viewer window is active.

Use the "Register Cameraid..." command once you have paid for Cameraid and obtained a registration code.

In addition to the standard Edit menu items, the Preferences and Find Duplicates windows are opened from this menu.

Note: The Preferences menu item is under the Cameraid menu when using Cameraid Carbon under MacOS X.


Originally Cameraid was designed so that selected files could be renamed so that the would end or start with bullet marks. The default behavior is to append bullet marks to file names.

Unmark all will look for files that end or start with the bullet mark and rename the files to remove the marks.

Mark <0 grades will rename the the files with negative grades.

You can ask Cameraid to sort the images by grade, date, file name or file size.

If the "Reverse Sorting Order" item is checked, the sort orders are reversed (highest to lowest grade, latest to oldest date, reverse alphabetical order and from largest to smallest file).

Note: The sort order is not continuously maintained. If you add more files, change the grades or rename the files, you have to perform the sort again to keep the files in order.

The grading system is discussed in more detail with the viewer window.


The zoom menu is explained in detail in the viewer chapter.


The transform menu is explained in detail in its own chapter. Note the sample "F" letter and what happens to it when the various transforms are applied to it.

Classic version:

Carbon version:

Cycle windows (command-U) switches through all the open Cameraid windows. Command-space will also work, if you are using MacOS 9 or earlier. Under MacOS X, the operating system prevents the use of command-space, so this shortcut had to be changed from previous versions of Cameraid.

"Cameraid Viewer" selects the viewer window.

The "Camera Control" command opens the digital camera control window. Note:

The "Erase All Pictures in Camera" command is only available when the digital camera control window is active. Selecting this command will first start a six second countdown, during which you can still safely cancel the effect of this command by hitting the abort button. It will then erase all the pictures in the camera.

Batch processor windows are listed last in the menu.

"Camera Control" and "Erase All Pictures" are unavailable in the Carbon version.


Very few programs can be created without help from others. This section of the manual tries to give credit where credit is due, but please forgive me if your name has been omitted.

Lossless JPEG Transforms and JPEG Compression Libraries

This software is based in part on the work of the Independent JPEG Group. For more information:

Special thanks to Guido Vollbeding for implementing the Independent JPEG Group lossless JPEG transform code.

Digital Camera Protocols

The digital camera communications protocols were reverse-engineered by several people. My thanks to them for providing this information on the world wide web. The actual program code was written entirely from scratch by me and bears no similarity with any of the programs listed below.

Eugene Crosser <>

Jun-ichiro "itojun" Itoh

Thierry Bousch <>

Mamoru Ohno <>