Reduce Photo Size


Dear Computer Lady,

I have a question and hope you can help me.

I have a digital camera I use quite a bit and I usually use the highest megabytes when I take pictures.

My question is how can I send them in the email without them taking so long for me to upload and the receiver to down load? I have sent some on and it takes forever to download. I hear there is a shorter way of doing it.

Can you help me?

Thanks, Steve 

Dear Steve,

What you need to do, is create a smaller version of the picture to send via e-mail.

If you are using Windows XP, there is a fairly easy way to do this…

1. Open your “My Pictures” folder by clicking on “Start” and then “My Pictures”.

2. In your picture folder, find the file you want to send by e- mail, and right click on it, point to “Send To” and then click on “Mail Recipient”. If you want to send more than one picture, you can highlight a group of pictures by dragging with your mouse, or click on the first picture, hold down your shift key and then click on the last picture.

3. A small window will appear that gives you the option to make your picture smaller, or keep the original size. Just chose “Make all my pictures smaller” and then click “OK”.

4. This will open up an e-mail message with your smaller picture already attached. All you will have to do, is fill out the rest of the e-mail and send it. The nice thing about this method, is that your original picture is not changed, Windows just makes a smaller copy of the picture and sends it.

If you don’t have Windows XP, you will need a program to make a smaller copy of each picture before you send them. A free, and easy to use program that I like is called Irfanview. You can download it at

1. Once you have Irfanview installed, open the program, and then use the “File” and “Open” commands to find and open your picture. 

2. With your picture open, click on “Image” in the menu bar, then click on “Resize/Resample”. The Resize/Resample Image window will appear.

3. Make sure the size method section in the lower right hand corner of the window has “Resample (better quality) selected and that there is a check mark in the box that says “Reserve aspect ratio”.

4. The easiest way to quickly reduce the picture, is to click the “Half” button until the size of your picture is down to the size you want. Something that is 300 to 400 pixels would be a good size, then click the “OK” button.

5. Now you need to save this smaller copy of your picture. Don’t just click on “Save” because you will lose your nice high resolution picture, instead, click on “File” and “Save As”.

6. In the Save As window, change the file name of your picture, I usually add the word “small” or letters “sm” to the beginning of the file name. That way, I can quickly locate the new smaller file when attaching to my e-mail message.

7. Now attach the new, smaller picture to your e-mail message and send it.


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