File Extensions

Repeat after me: "I will always use file extensions." That two- or three-letter code is critical to preserving your file. The extension tells the computer (which is the least intelligent creation ever made) which application created the graphic and what can open it. Mac users have been historically lazy with extensions, because the Mac OS had written the file type into the header information. This does you no good if, for example, the file is copied to a PC-formatted disc, moves across a PC or UNIX network, or travels the Internet. Always use file extensions.

Not seeing your file extensions at all?

• Windows machines may have these turned off by default. Go to the Folder Options control panel and access the View pane. Disable the setting called Hide Extensions For Known File Types.

• Under OSX, you must access the Finder preferences. Choose Finder > Preferences. Click the Advanced button and check the box for Show all file extensions.

But what are all the file extensions? Don't worry about it; simply tell Photoshop to always use them. Open the Preferences menu by pressing jj-a+0 (^0+0) and access the File Handling options. Tell Photoshop to Append File Extension Always, and check the Use Lower Case checkbox. Problem solved; you can now work cross-platform.

In our cross-platform world, file extension types are critical (especially for Mac users). Be sure to change your preferences to always append file extensions so that you don't have to memorize a bunch of two- and three-letter codes.
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