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Windows 7: How to manage photos, videos & media

Get more from Windows' new multimedia features

The methods for photo and video importing, editing, and exporting have been all updated in Windows 7. We look at how to get started with these and other entertainment features of Windows 7.

Import photos and videos into Windows Live Movie Maker

Windows Live Movie Maker eschews video capture tools in favor of relying on the rest of Windows 7. If you connect a DV camcorder to a Win 7 PC, the capture process should automatically launch outside Movie Maker.

Click the Import the entire video radio button, enter a name, and click Next. Click the Import videos as multiple files checkbox, and the tool will splice the tape into your individual shots. Approve the next windows to import the tape; the importing process will take exactly as much time as your footage does to play.

Once your PC has captured your media, you have some options for adding clips to a video in Windows Live Movie Maker. From the desktop, drag your photos and videos into the right pane in that program.

If that area is blocked, drag the files over the Movie Maker icon in the Taskbar, continue to hold the mouse down, and then drop them into the right pane. Alternatively, select Add above Videos and photos in the software, select the media, and click Open.

You'll want to rearrange and trim various clips during the editing process, but at this point all of them are part of your movie. If you added too many clips or images, delete them from the storyboard by clicking the files and then clicking Remove.

Edit your movie

Windows Live Movie Maker cuts the timeline view, focusing instead on arranging clips in a storyboard. Just drag and drop each clip and each image to place them in the desired order within the right pane. Since some video clips run too long, you'll need to trim them into shape.

Click a video clip to select it; then click the Edit tab at the top of the window, and click Trim. At this point, you can adjust the in- and out-point sliders (which govern the length of the clip, by trimming from one or both extremities) at the beginning and end of the timeline.
Press the spacebar or click the Play icon to view a sample from the full clip, playing only between the edited points.

If you're satisfied, click Save and close to finish. You'll make the edit here, but the original video file will stay the same, in case you want to re-import it later.

You can expand or contract the length of time that an image shows, too. Within the Edit tab, click the photo and adjust the value for Duration. Click the Home tab to return to the main view.

Home entertainment advice

NEXT PAGE: Publish movies to YouTube

  1. We show you how to get more out of Windows 7's new multimedia features
  2. Get Windows Live Essentials
  3. Publish a Photo Gallery online
  4. Import photos and videos into Windows Live Movie Maker
  5. Publish movies to YouTube
  6. Control media streaming on your local network
  7. Activate Windows Media Player lightweight playback mode

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