Friday, October 23, 2009

How to migrate Windows Live Messenger emoticons

Windows Live Messenger (latest version at the time of this post was Build 14.0.8089.726) does not come with an export/import function for migrating emoticons from one PC to another. However, this can be done simply by copy and pasting the hidden emoticon folder.

Emoticons are stored in the AppData folder under your Windows account. For example, if you are on Windows Vista/7, given that your account name on Windows is "Vivien" and that your Windows Live ID is "", the emoticons should live in this folder:

  • C:\Users\Vivien\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Messenger\\ObjectStore\CustomEmoticons

Now copy this folder from Machine A and paste it into the same named folder and path on Machine B. Restart Windows Live Messenger on Machine B, and you should now see all your emoticons on Machine B!

Note that the AppData folder is hidden by default. The simplest way to get to the folder is by typing in the path directly to your Windows start menu search pane. If you prefer browsing to the folder via Windows Explorer and you're having trouble finding the AppData folder, make sure to show all hidden folders.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

My Photography site powered by SmugMug

After 2 weeks of trial and a bunch of research, I decided to go with SmugMug for hosting my photos. It has the most attractive interface among all the photo hosting sites I've tried out (that includes Flickr, Picasa, Shutterfly, etc.). It's clean, beautiful, and professional. Besides the interface, I was also attracted by the unlimited storage, site/gallery customizations, image protection, and presentation styles/themes. It's also completely ad and spam free! They have a lot of other great features as well (backups, videos, custom watermarks, etc.) so it's best to refer to their pages for the complete overview:
I chose to go with SmugMug instead of Flickr mainly because of SmugMug's image protection and privacy controls. Although the Flickr community is a lot more active than SmugMug's, I prefer keeping my photos safe with SmugMug's size restriction and right-click protection. I also wanted to have the ability to customize my site (a feature that Flickr lacks). However, I will probably make use of the free Flickr basic account to upload low resolution version of my photos and point them to SmugMug to gain some audience.

If you're trying to find an online home for your photos, I strongly recommend you to give SmugMug a try:
Third-party tools that I use to interact with SmugMug:
Reviews on SmugMug:
So where is my SmugMug site?
Feel free to leave comments, photoranks (hover over a photo to give thumbs up/down), etc. You don't need a SmugMug account to leave comments/photoranks :)