Genevieve asks:

My Canon camera only opens my pictures on my computer using the included software. On this software, I can’t find any way to resize the pictures or save them to my computer, I only see an option to email the pictures. It’s driving me crazy. How can I get the pictures smaller?

Sometimes included software from cameras is helpful, but in this case, it sounds like it’s not helping at all! First, to access your pictures, I’d recommend going straight to the pictures themselves and bypassing the software. To do this, plug your camera in using the USB cord, (If the software automatically opens, simply close it) and on Windows Vista or 7, open the Start menu, and click on Computer. This will load up a window that lists all your Drive and Devices. Find the camera, and double click to open the folders until you get to your list of pictures – in my experience, the main folder is usually called DCIM. (If you are guilty like me of never clearing your memory card, you may find multiple folders of pictures.) On Windows 8/8.1 navigate to the File Manager and follow the same steps.

You can then save the pictures to your computer’s hard drive by highlighting and dragging or by copying and pasting. I’d recommend moving them before resizing as sometimes you can corrupt the files on the card by changing them there. And also, if you ever want the pictures larger and you change the original, you can’t easily revert back to the original file.

Once saved to your hard drive, the easiest way to resize them is using a photo viewing and editing software, such as Paint, since it is free on all Windows computers. Simply open up the pictures using Paint, and click on Resize at the top. It will open up to a Percent view, but you can also go by Pixels. Notice how high the pixel numbers are on my example, and that you can only see part of the picture.

A quick resize to 10 percent shrinks it down to a more reasonable size to share the picture or send it by email.

It also reduces the size of the image by quite a bit – from over 4,000 KB down to 61 KB.

Keep in mind, though, that the larger version is great for editing and printing in larger formats, so I’d suggest using a Save As command and renaming the file, rather than save, so you have both copies.

– Audra