.Mac photo pages and iPhoto 6

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One of the “new” features added in iPhoto6 is actually the removal of a feature—the .Mac Home Page button. This button let .Mac subscribers easily create online photo albums from a selection (or album) of pictures in iPhoto. I suppose the rationale for this decision is that the new iWeb program offers an integrated photo page feature. But for many users (my mother among them), iWeb is more than they need—the simplicity of the old Home Page button was hard to beat.

While I don’t have a solution to bring back the Home Page button, there is a relatively simple solution to create .Mac photo pages from iPhoto. It’s not quite as simple as clicking a button, but it’s much simpler than creating a full site with iWeb. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. In iPhoto 6, select the photos (or album) that you wish to turn into a .Mac photo page.
  2. Choose File -> Export.
  3. Set the Size section to 800x600 or 640x480 as you wish (larger images will take longer to upload and use more .Mac disk space, obviously). Make sure that the Use extension box is checked—if the image names don’t have extensions, then the .Mac site won’t let you use that folder for an image page.
  4. Click Export.
  5. In the dialog box that appears, click on your iDisk in the sidebar, then click the Pictures folder. This is where .Mac stores the pictures used in photo pages.
  6. Click New Folder, name the new folder and click Create. This is where the images you are exporting will go. I prefer to use short, one-word descriptive names, such as Hawaii03 or crazycats , but this isn’t required.
  7. Click OK to export the images.

That’s all you have to do for the photo export step. Next, open your .Mac homepage to create your new photo page. Click one of the Photo Album styles, and when the next screen appears, select (click once) the folder of images you just created, then click Choose. Follow the rest of the steps, and you’re done.

While iWeb is a terrific program in its own right, it’s clearly not required for something as simple as creating a .Mac photo page, so I’m not sure why Apple felt they had to remove the one-buttons solution from iPhoto. Until they see fit to add it back, however, the above process will still let you publish .Mac photo albums with relative ease.

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