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jAlbum / Welcome



An A to Z of terms and setting to make finding specific information easier.

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If on creating a project you get an ‘access denied’ alert check jAlbum is being run with administrator privileges. Also if antivirus software is installed ensure that it is not blocking jAlbum.

jAlbum comes with two sample projects to make getting started easier, they are 'Welcome to jAlbum' and 'Sample Project'. If after trying them out you no longer want them to remain in your project listing you can delete them by selecting them and then clicking on the small down-arrow to the right of the project name and choose 'Delete...' and then 'Delete entire project'.

This is the view mode jAlbum starts in. It shows whenever you don't have any project open. Let's go through each part of jAlbum's main user interface:




Near the top right corner is a search field, if you have never used the search function you will see a green hint 'bubble' pop up after a few minutes. To prevent this from repeatedly showing you must click in the search field and type something like 'images'. This will produce a list of settings that relate to images, see below:


Then you must click on one of those results and you will be taken to the setting as described in the results. The hint bubble will no longer show.

You can read more on the search function here

View modes



Here you can add, rearrange and delete the items (images, videos and folders) that makes up your album.



View and edit individual images, videos and their corresponding properties here.



Select this view mode to preview the final album in a web browser.



Let others know about your album.



This full screen mode allows you to present the images in your project’s currently displayed folder in such a way as to approve (rate and exclude) and compare the images of the folder.

Sign in

Allows you to sign in using your jAlbum account username. If you have purchased a license for jAlbum, the license will automatically be activated when you sign in. Once you are signed in, this button changes to a sign out button. You can sign out if you have your own website hosting and do not want your albums listed on your jAlbum profie pages. If your albums are hosted with jAlbum and you sign out then your albums won't be added properly to your jalbum profile, but the server will eventually discover them and add them as hidden albums. In addition. signing out will stop the application from removing albums that have been deleted using any of the various delete album methods, you will need to manually remove the album(s) from your profile/albums page.

If you change your jAlbum username, on your profile page, then you will need to log out and in again using your new username.

Notification center

Notifies you when there is a new jAlbum update, skin update, when the account is about to expire and a lot of other things. When a message is about a skin update and you opt to update it the skin will only be reloaded loaded if the current project is already using it. Skin updates will also warn if the version of jAlbum being used needs to be updated in order to use the updated skin.

Warning skin updates may fail if the skin is currently selected. To prevent problems save the project and select another project that uses a different skin (or select the 'new' project and another skin). Then click the Notification icon and then update the skin, once the update has been completed you can reselect your project and continue.

Recent projects

A list of all your recent projects, the default is 50 but you can control the number of projects in this list in Preferences/General. The list can be sorted as recent, a-z or z-a by clicking on the 'sort arrows'. Click on a project to open it. You can remove all recent projects from the list by selecting the first item in the list, <<Clear list>>.

See Explore Mode for further details.

Skin and style


The Skin selector is a drop down menu that allows you to select any of the installed skins (templates/themes) or, at the end of the list, download more skins from jAlbum.net. Downloaded skins (.jaskin extension) just need to be double clicked on, or drag and dropped onto jAlbum, to have them installed. Skins bundled with jAlbum appear in regular weight font and skins installed by the user appear in bold. A bundled skin however will appear in bold once it has been updated, as updates go in to the user's skins directory, not the program directory.

If you want to revert to an earlier version of a bundled skin then you will need to remove the bundled skin before you can select the older version. To delete the bundled skin select it and then click on the skin info button, confirm it is the bundled version by checking its location and then click the delete button, see 'Skin info' below for details.

From jAlbum 15.1 you can also save the skin's current settings as a default .jap file, to be used for future projects. If you want to use the skin's suggested defaults for a particular project load the skin with the ALT/Opt key held down.

Note, if you ‘reload’ the same skin as already selected in a project all of the skin settings will revert to their defaults.

Changing skins

Welcome skins change AdvancedSettings.PNG

If you have made an album with one skin and then decide to use another one you will need to ensure that Process subdirectories and Include subdirectories in index pages are selected and Process only updated subdirectories and Exclude new images by default are not selected in Advanced settings. This is because each skin has its own resources that control the look of the web pages, so every page within the album needs to be processed to ensure they all point to the correct resources. When rebuilding the album just click 'Make album' and then upload all of your album.

Before experimenting with other skins/settings you can save the project settings using ‘Save as…’, then you can recover your original settings by loading the newly created project settings file.

Skin settings

If the skin has its own settings you can click on the gearwheel and the skin settings will open. Some skins have their own help pages for settings specific to them, see Skin Manuals for a list of skins with user manuals.

Skin info

Skin Info.png

If you click on the info symbol the skin information window will open. This will give you information on the skin such as the installed and current version and if a newer version is available an update option; the support page, home page and its location on your computer; The features the skin supports; the option of deleting the skin if the current skin if it is no longer used. From jAlbum 15.1 you can also save skin settings as a default .jap file, to be used when the skin is loaded, the 'reset defaults' button will delete the saved settings file resulting in the skin's suggested defaults being used.

Warning for Windows users: Windows locks open files, so updates may fail if the skin is currently selected. See the note in the Notification centre above.

There is also a link to jAlbum's skins page, handy if you want to explore skins that are not currently installed.

Skin's can also be deleted from Menu/Tools/Skin Developer/Delete Skin, or by using SHIFT + Cmd/Ctrl + S to open the skin's directory in your computer's file system.


The style selector is a drop down menu that lets you change and preview the style of your album, if supported by the selected skin. The current style is indicated by a tick, the highlighted style is the target. The popup image, if one is supplied by the skin, is an example of how the target style looks.

Settings button

Opens jAlbum settings. These settings are applied to the project you are working with and are independent of the skin you use.

Make Album


Click Make Album if you want jAlbum to build your album. The first time you hit Make Album, jalbum will build the whole album, depending on the album size this can take some time. But when you hit Make Album after you have just made some changes to the album, jAlbum will only make changes needed and that can save a lot of time. By default jAlbum always tries to only make any needed changes, and by just clicking on Make Album jAlbum will decide if the whole album needs to be built or just the changes.

Note, the main make button respects the "Background mode" setting while the first menu option always uses foreground make.

Make in background

Submit the current project for album building as a background process, so you can carry on creating or editing another project without waiting for the album to be made. See Monitor and control progress.

Make and upload in background

Submit the current project for album building and uploading as a background process, so you can carry on creating or editing another project without waiting for the album to be made. See Monitor and control progress.

Force Remake

If you click on the small arrow to the right on the button you will see the option 'Force Remake'. Use this option only if you want to force jAlbum to rebuild the entire album. This equivalent to deleting the album and starting again.

Make Test

Make Test means that all HTML pages are remade, new images, new comments and new skin settings will be seen but other changes, such as image bounds, will not. Images are only reprocessed if they are missing in the output directory or if individual images have been updated. Make Test is to make an intermediate build, and can thus leave your album needing a further ‘Make’ to ensure all pages and images are built with the current settings..

Multi maker...

Select and make, and optionally upload, multiple albums from the displayed recent projects, in one go. See Multimaker and jAlbum>Menus>Tools>Multi maker... for more details

Web-safe file names

JAlbum will convert any non-web-safe characters in file names to URL valid characters. For example, an ampersand ‘&’ character will be replaced with a dash ‘-’. Note: inside jAlbum, unsafe characters are prevented from being used by a preference setting, Preferences>Projects>Illegal characters. Files and folders created outside of jAlbum will be flagged with a small warning triangle if their names contain unsafe characters.



If it's the first time you upload an album with the desktop application you will be asked to enter your jAlbum account or other account profile information. If this album never have been uploaded it will automatically point the upload to the account profile that was last used.

For albums already published clicking the upload button will automatically start uploading the album to the location where the album was last uploaded to.

By clicking on the small arrow to the right on the button you will get some more upload options. Upload in background lets you publish the album of the selected project, whilst still creating, editing or uploading other projects/albums. Upload/Manage will take you to the upload/manage window.

Read more about uploading albums here, read about monitoring and controlling progress here.

Change indicator


When certain changes are made a small asterisk will show in jAlbum's window's bottom lefthand corner. A change to most settings for Images, effects and some advanced meta (such as include xmp data in generated images) will result in an orange asterisk.


A change to most settings for pages, some Images (advanced tab), advanced (not metadata), video, advanced, Skin and user variables will result in a white asterisk.

Note. Changing the ‘Make slide pages’ setting on the ‘Pages’ tab will not trigger an indicator or a save changes message. If the change is wanted you should do a save project immediately.

Changes made.png

Clicking on the asterisk will popup a window with details of the changes identified. At the bottom of the window is a button allowing you to revert all settings to the status of the last time the album was made.

If the project is saved without a make then the next time it is loaded the indicator will show, and the changes reset if desired before making the album.


There are two preview buttons here. The one with the filled magnifying glass will take you to the local preview and the one below will show you the published album. You will see the album in jAlbum's embedded browser if it has been enabled in Preferences/General, otherwise it will open in your default browser.

Read more about previewing albums here.

Files and folders made by jAlbum

JAlbum creates projects, albums, settings, defaults and other files, See where are my files to find out what and where your files are.

Context sensitive help

Press F1 or click on the white ‘?’ Inside the blue circle (top right of the window) to access help on the currently displayed/active area.


Firstskin error.png

jAlbum is continuously being improved and enhanced, but things can go wrong from time to time. Errors might be caused by bugs in the core program, third party libraries or add on skins. Whatever the cause jAlbum will provide information that will help track down the root cause of the error and provide a way of getting details of the bug to the developers.

When an error occurs, most likely during a Make or an Upload process, a dialogue window will open up and a small warning triangle icon will show at the bottom right of the main window.

If you want to find the cause of the error - it might be due to a file in your project, or narrow it down to help get the bug resolved, then read this forum sticky note by jGromit on how best to debug errors. However, if you just want to report the error click on the Report error button and another window will pop-up saying The error details have been copied to your clipboard. Please include them in your report. When you click OK you will be taken to the appropriate skin forum and you can post your bug report there.

Skin developers, or those technically minded, can examine the error details and/or try to correct skin errors by clicking the Edit skin button, you will be taken to the file containing the error with the cursor at the start of the line with the error. After correcting the code save the changes and try making the album again. Note, clicking Edit skin will close both the error dialogue and progress windows for you :)

Note, having corrected the cause of a problem there might be further abnormal results but without further warnings. Mostly these oddities are likely to affect skin developers, but in any event if things don’t seem ‘right’ quit and restart jAlbum.