Wednesday, January 25, 2012

How to "Install" Filters/Plugins

~ Installing filters and plugins ~

Filters and plugins are used to create special effects on images. You can find a lot of free filters and plugins, then some you have to pay for. Some filters actually cost A LOT of money.

PSP uses Photoshop compatible filters and plugins that end in an .8BF file extension. If you find a Photoshop filter that does not end in this extension, chances are it won't work in PSP. I should say, at least, I haven't come across any that do.

If you are new to PSP, then more than likely, you do not know how to "install" filters/and or plugins into PSP.  By "install" it actually means putting the filter into the correct file location, because most Photoshop compatible  filters are not actually executable program files (meaning most do not end in an .EXE extension). Usually if the filters or plugins end in an .EXE extension, it is one that has many effects and functionality to it. The filters and plugins that are executable files install just like regular programs and will guide you through the install process on it's own.

If you have trouble getting your filters and plugins to actually work, I'm sorry but I cannot help you. I do know that sometimes you have to install certain DLL files into certain file locations, for certain OS's. I myself, had to add 7 or was it (10?) different DLL files for my plugins to work because I am running Window 7-64bit. Still even now, some of my older and most favorite filters won't work.

Please note, sometimes Corel has filter compatibility patches included in PSP updates, but not all the time. It is not up to Corel to make sure your filters are compatible, it is up to the developers of the filters to update them. Meaning, if you have a filter that was created say… 8yrs ago, the person who developed the filter, may not make it anymore, or quit updating it. You are SOL honey, cuz no matter what you do, unless someone out there somewhere had permission to make a patch for it or recreate it …. It ain't ever gonna work. If you are having trouble, please go to my Helpful Links post, under LABELS on my blog.

Sooo, with all that being said let's get on with this.

 Filters and Plugins can really bog down PSP when using them. Especially if you have a lot of them. Many people, including myself, suggest creating a special folder for your Plugins or multiple folders if you have a ton of filters, and directing PSP to find this folder. All versions of PSP create a folder within your MY DOCUMENTS directory called 'My PSP Files', and in earlier versions it had a folder within 'My PSP Files' for plugins. The newer versions of PSP do not include the 'Plugin' folder, but it is within the 'My PSP Files' folder that I suggest you create one. ALSO backup your filters onto an external hard drive. NOTHING sucks more than having to search the internet for filters and plugins that you have lost due to a crash, especially when you had the awesome older filters that you cannot find anymore!!
Ok, after you install PSP, find your MY DOCUMENTS folder, open it and look for the MY PSP FILES folder. Open that folder and create a new folder called PLUGINS or MY PSP PLUGINS.
Now we are going to point it out to PSP that it has to look for this folder for your filters and plugins.

 and when the pop up comes up scroll down the File Types list and click on PLUGINS. Your settings should look exactly like mine. Your default location may look different then mine, Depending on what OS (a computer's Operating System) your system is running.

Now click on the ADD button. When that window pops up, choose the location of your new folder. Here is what mine looks like.

Click OK.
That's all Folk's! Now all you do to "install" a filter or plugin is make sure that PSP is not open, and place your filter or plugin in your new Plugin folder. unless it is an executable file, as mentioned above. Open up PSP, open an empty canvas, then click on EFFECTS-->PLUGINS and check to make sure your filter or plugin is in the list.

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