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What IS a library RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • It seems that my concept of a library is somewhat different from Microsoft's.
    My needs are to assemble together links to relevent files of most interest of a certain type, for example video, in order to assess or easily play any file. As it stands at present I cannot do this. All I can do is nominate directories (which show every file) and yet there is no means to filter the extension types to achieve the files that I want.
    Now I would have thought that if you delete a file from the library then that is all you would do. Oh no .... the file is also totally deleted from the original location. This is analagous to withdrawing a book from a library and destroying the printing press.

    I must admit to be getting a bit old in the tooth so may not be up to the modern way of thinking ... or am I.
    Thursday, October 1, 2009 10:11 PM

All replies

  • Hi AnotherDaveH,

    Thank you for posting your idea.

    I will forward it to our internal team as a customer feedback.

    Thanks again. :D
    Friday, October 2, 2009 8:50 AM
  • I'll agree about filtering data and I'll add that we need the ability to remove subdirectories from Libraries. I disagree, however, on your complaint about deletion. I find the way Libraries (which are only 10~20KB XML files) handle deletion to be a-okay, Libraries only represent data and nothing is copied or created. In my opinion deleting a file from the library is more akin to... destroying a book obtained from a library, in the end neither you nor the library has the book anymore but I suppose the press (Word?) is still running.
    Friday, October 2, 2009 4:13 PM
  • Hi Vistaline

    I agree that 'printing press' is the wrong terminology, what I meant but could not find the words for was 'original manuscript'. Looking at the library PURELY as a library would indicate that deleting a 'book' would only delete the link to that file and leave the original untouched. It does't. The original file itself is deleted. Since the library drags in all the rubbish imaginable there is no way to whittle this down to only those items you wish to view. As far as I can see library files can be opened in the originating application and therefore modified, copied or new files created. In short it is not a library but an alternative working platform to conventional directories.

    Now, although I am used to directories and like to know where things are, I am not nescessarily against the idea of a 'library' (misleading terminology) provided it was aproached in the right way. For instance, say I were to create quite a few text, spreadsheet and database files and just save these to my documents but not in specific folders. I ought then to be able to create 3 directories in the library specifying a filter for each filetype which would group (say) all the current and future text files together. This would also help me in video editing where I only need to see project, mpeg or avi files and not the ancilliary files.

    However, whichever way you look at the library, it is a real mess and not suitable for either one or the other.
    Saturday, October 3, 2009 1:58 AM
  • Gee, in the good ol' days we just put a bunch of shortcuts in a place where we wanted to organize an easy way to get to things.  I guess that's old fashioned.

    Thanks for making it clear in this thread, AnotherDaveH, that a Library can be a mine field and its (mis)use can result in destruction of data.  I hope at least that the files end up in the recycle bin.

    -Noel
    Saturday, October 3, 2009 7:01 PM
  • I just wanted to point out that you can still make Search Folders (just as in Vista) that will always aggregate data based on file type.  For example, I have a "AVI and MPEG Movie" search folder, that always shows all files of that type.
    Saturday, October 3, 2009 10:35 PM
  • Yes. The good old days. When you organised the directories so that there were photos in one, documents in another etc with subfolders for the various types so you knew where things were. Mind you, you still have to do that now if the library is to make any sense. So I do not really understand where Microsoft is going with this.

    I am not taking any credit for 'discovering' anything. If you type 'library' in the seaech bar you will see what I mean. There are plenty of gripes out there.


    And the files do end up in the recycle bin.
    Saturday, October 3, 2009 10:49 PM
  • Hasn't the OS begun to make use of links behind the scenes, starting with Vista, in order to implement some of the file system version compatibility "magic" such as making C:\ProgramData the same as C:\Documents and Settings\All Users (or whatever it is; I'm typing from memory here)?

    -Noel
    Sunday, October 4, 2009 9:54 AM

  • Yes.  These features are so new they're not even available in the UI Context Menus yet.  Read all about them right here in this 1998 MSDN article.   :))


    Better put that in the Library
    Sunday, October 4, 2009 7:00 PM
  • It seems that my concept of a library is somewhat different from Microsoft's.
    My needs are to assemble together links to relevent files of most interest of a certain type, for example video, in order to assess or easily play any file. As it stands at present I cannot do this. All I can do is nominate directories (which show every file) and yet there is no means to filter the extension types to achieve the files that I want.
    Now I would have thought that if you delete a file from the library then that is all you would do. Oh no .... the file is also totally deleted from the original location. This is analagous to withdrawing a book from a library and destroying the printing press.

    I must admit to be getting a bit old in the tooth so may not be up to the modern way of thinking ... or am I.
    Hi DaveH

    I predict that sometime in the near future the Windows Libraries will become known as one of the best, most used. and most indispensable components that was ever implemented in the Windows OS. They solve many, many difficult problems that have plagued users for a long time.

     

    Library=Collection.  A library can be a collection of just about anything. In Windows it denotes a collection of files.

     

    Digital library

     

    We are in a era where a user who maintains huge collections of media files (videos, recorded TV programs, music, pictures, etc) that are several hundred GBs in size is not uncommon, in fact it is fast becoming the norm.

     

    The number one procedure that more and more users perform on a new installation is to move all of their default user folders (Documents, Music, Pictures, etc) to a separate drive or partition to reduce the size of the System Volume. This is a good thing, since it not only keeps the system volume footprint relatively small, but also results in easier system optimization and backup.

     

    The problem with this is that it was always difficult to organize, access, and find the locations of this data. This required moving away from the system volume where a user typically spends most of their time.

     

    Libraries solve all of these problems by enabling the user to perform all of these organizing functions from one central location on the system drive.

     

    When you add a folder to a library whose size is many GBs it only adds a few MBs or less of used disk space to the system volume.

     

    As you noted, you can delete a file from a library and the actual file is sent to the Recycle Bin, (another good reason to always leave the RB enabled) but, you can also perform any other operation on those files, such as open, rename, move, copy, cut, paste. You can save a file directly to a library folder and the file will actually be placed in the physical location for that folder, not on the system drive.

     

    Since the way files are organized and displayed is an individual preference, the libraries have an almost unlimited number of ways to accomplish this.

     

    Scenario: You want to organize all of the Video files that are contained in 6 folders that reside in various locations on local partitions, external hard drives, and network locations.

     

    a. Create a new library and give it a personally intuitive name.

    b. In the libraries properties optimize the library for Videos.

    c. Right click the new library and select Add a Folder. Navigate to the location for each of the 6 folders and add them to the library.

     

    Now you can organize the files any way you wish. Let's say that you want to organize them by type into separate folders.

     

    a. With the library selected, at the top of the windows, select  the Arrange by: menu and click Type. Click the View Icon at the top of the screen and select large Icons. You will see an icon for each file type, such as WMV, AVI, MPEG, Quick Time, etc.

    b. Right click the library folder and select New/Folder and create a sub-folder for each type.

    c. Move each type icon to the proper folder.

     

    You can also organize the files by Tags, Date Created, Date Modified or any other way you wish, using the Arrange By and View Menu.

     

    Inside Windows 7: Introducing Libraries

     

    Development Scenarios in Windows 7: Libraries

     

    Hope this helps.

     

    Thank You for using Windows 7

    Ronnie Vernon MVP
    Saturday, October 10, 2009 9:29 AM
  • Hi Ronnie

    I am not talking developer here or even windows enthusiast who is always trawling the forum. I am one of a number of types of home user who will be starting to use Windows 7 as of end of October. The only difference is that I downloaded the RC shortly before the cutoff point and have had a chance to become familiar wth it and am aware of issues which will arise. In general I like Windows 7 and have the 'Home' edition on order from Amazon.

    There are two features, however, which I believe could do with an overhaul. One is the Control Panel which does not seem very intuitative and where finding what you want is a bit hit and miss. The other is the Library. Probably the worst thing about it is the name since I think this gives a misleading impression of what it actually is.

    I have done as you suggest many do and keep 'My documents' etc. on another drive and keep the system drive as just that as far as possible. Although I have created various directories, my documents is the one place that tends to become a tip. So, what if I use the libraries. How can I ensure, for instance, that all spreadsheets go in one directory automatically and database files in another. Or put another way, that I can select either to view. I have photographs (about 1000) but most of these are 35mm. They are in directories of roll no. but have no metadata for search purposes. In short if I keep my data in relevent directories I know where it is and therefore cannot see the advantage of the library with its (from what I have seen so far) limited file structure.

    One of my hobbies is video and the subsequent editing. It is the most disc space intensive of anything I do. At the moment the software does not run on W7 so have not been able to test it. I have a new version on order (Pinnacle 14). I have one drive for capture, one for editing and another for the output files. I control where these files go from within the program. There are other files associated with the captured files and similarly a project file is actually 2 files + eventually some large render files. There can also be a number of files associated with the main output file. Within the program I only see what I need to see. If I wished to view any of the video files from within the library, I not only see the video files but all the ancilliary files as well. I DO NOT WANT TO SEE THOSE FILES and require some means of filtering so that I only see .avi or .mpg or whatever.

    Wait a minute I hear you say, you're not reading my post. Well, yes I am. You are saying that I CAN do all that. I have to admit that I have not delved too deeply into the library (other things to look at) and got as far as the organise button. From there I could see no obvious route to doing what you say. I had a quick look while typing this but lost my way a bit. Thank you for explaining the procedure, I will give this a good go between now and the release date.

    I shall also look to see whether I can make any of the library directories read only.

    I would like to share your optimism regarding the library as yet I have reservations over whether it will replace direct file access. It's going to be like marmite, you either love or hate it.

    I suspect your 2 references are a bit 'heavy' for the average user.

    Sunday, October 11, 2009 6:43 PM
  • I put some of my DVD's in the library today, wish I knew which one to choose though, they all look exactly the same.

    Never mind, lets go to the media player.  Oh dear, where are they - they're not here.

    Back to the library and drill down a bit (like I would do normally).

    A double click and it's playing. But what is this, it's in Windows live photo gallery. Well I never.
    Tuesday, October 13, 2009 10:37 PM