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Photoshop Elements

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How to get your photos 'out' of Photoshop Album Starter Edition

Q: How do I unlock my copy of Photoshop Album Starter Edition?


A: Adobe Photoshop Album Starter Edition was a free photo organizer and editor that was discontinued in the Spring of 2009. The program had a locking mechanism that caused it to stop working after 30 uses, or until the program was registered by the user, and an unlocking code provided. Since support for the program was discontinued, there is no longer a way to process unlocking requests.


Q: How do I get my photos out of Photoshop Album Starter Edition?

A: It is a common misconception that Starter Edition 'stores', or copies, your files into it. But the program does not move or copy files when they are 'added' to it, rather it scans your system's My Pictures directory, and generates miniature versions of your pictures (called thumbnails) so that you can browse a 'flat' list of thumbnails of your photos, overcoming the inconvenience of having to go into separate folders in Windows Explorer to have to find files.The thumbnails, as well as any tags, and Collections/Albums that you create in Starter Edition are all stored in the Photoshop Album catalog file, separate from your pictures, and your pictures remain separate, where you originally chose to store them on your computer, before using Photoshop Album Starter Edition.

If the program no longer launches because it's expired, or you are interested in moving on to a more powerful Organizer/Editor from Adobe, but want to preserve the information that you created in the Starter Edition program, you can install the tryout for Photoshop Elements 8; it will preserve the Tags and Collections/Albums that you created using the Starter Edition program.

If you choose to uninstall Photoshop Album Starter Edition, doing so will not delete any of your photos. But then where are your photos that you used to find by using Photoshop Album Starter Edition?

  • You can navigate your file system using Windows Explorer, just as you did before you used Photoshop Album Starter Edition. Windows typically stores your pictures in your My Documents>My Pictures folder. Here is a handy How-To that you could refer to to find photos on your system, as well as some other tips for how you can use folders to keep your photos organized:
  • If you used Photoshop Album to download files from a digital camera or scanner, the default location where the program will create those files would be in the My Pictures>Digital Camera Photos folder. But if you do NOT use Photoshop Album Starter edition to download files from your camera, then you will find that folder empty.


About the contributor

Mark Dahm is the Principal Product Manager for, and previous Product Manager for Photoshop Elements.

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