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Learn how to access and purge cache files in this Adobe Photoshop CS2 Advanced training video.
Tags:access,adobe,adobe photoshop,adobe photoshop cs2,cache,cache files,files,macromedia,purge,total training
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Now before we leave this lesson, there is one more very important thing that I want to pass along to you that has nothing to do with Camera Raw, but everything to do with the Adobe Bridge. In order to demonstrate this I am going to switch over to the Macintosh platform, not because this weird thing only happens on the Mac, this weird thing I am about to show you, but rather because we've been using this particular machine longer than we've been using the other one. It has therefore a lot more files on it, a lot more sort of real world stuff has happened on this machine and I'll show you what I mean.
I am going to go ahead and switch to the Finder level here and I am going to hide the Bridge from view, so that we can see this one folder. Now why in a world am I showing you this folder? Well, the reason is this, the Bridge has to keep track of what it does, right, it has to keep track of things like the thumbnails. It sits here and generates all those big middy, wonderful, lustrous thumbnails. It has to keep track of some metadata as well. It keeps track of those in these things cache files. It has to keep track of this information and it has to use cache files. All kinds of different applications do this, but the problem is where does it put these cache files?
By default, it sinks them deep into the system level of your machine. So here I am in this folder called Application Support. There is a lot of application support folders on the Mac. If I Command+Click here on this title bar we can see that this happens to be inside the Library folder, which is inside the User folder, the active user folder and it always happened to be called admin, because nobody has gone around to naming it something different. There is Users and so on and so on.
So we're deep inside the User folder and then inside Application Support. Alright, now, if I double-click on Adobe, you'll see a bunch of different folders in here, but you will see Adobe as well. If I double-click on Adobe, notice that I have a Bridge folder, I also have a FileBrowser folder, the FileBrowser folder is left-over from Photoshop CS, Photoshop 7 and so on and so on, so the previous versions of the application that had a Bridge.
Now what I think is interesting about this, I am going to press Command+J here on the Mac in order to bring up my Folder Options and I am going to say that I want to calculate all sizes, so that I can see the sizes in my folders. We can see that my FileBrowser folder isn't very big. Now yours maybe huge. If you've been using Photoshop 7 and Photoshop CS, this maybe like 2 gigabytes of data in here. I say that because on my PowerBook that's exactly how many weird cache files I had there. I had all the space in my PowerBook that was taken up by caches files. Check out the Bridge though, in the case of this particular machine, it's almost a gig, it's 943 megs and we haven't been using this machine all that long.
I am going to go ahead and double-click on this Bridge folder here. We can see that it has a few Adobe Bridge items in it, but I am going to dig deeper into the Cache folder and then into the Thumbnails folder. There is our culprit right there, the Thumbnails folder, 941 megabyte. If I double-click on it, the files aren't that big. Check this out, I mean, from like 600K, 700K and so on, every once in a while I come across a really big one like JetSki&Pontoo here, 10.1 megabytes. This is the cache file that's associated with a folder that I once looked at. I brought my hard drive into this studio, plugged it in, took a look at the contents of my hard drive, then put the hard drive back in my back-pack and took it away and Total Training has never seen its sense and yet they're left with a nice 10 megabyte file, that's just taking up room on the disk.
We've got 1103 of these files sitting here and they just keep accumulating folks. So in the background, this is the bad news, the Bridge is sitting there and robbing you a valuable hard drive space. So you may say, oh, my goodness! That is terrible news what is the solution?
Now let's switch back to the PC and the solution is to distribute your cache files, to put the cache files in the folders that they belong inside of. So in other words instead of having a separate version of a cache file on every single machine that touches my hard drive, just put the cache file on the hard drive itself and then all the machines can reference their cache files and there is no duplication over-and-over again.
So press Ctrl+K here inside the Bridge or Command+K on the Mac and what I want you to do is I want you to go to the Advanced item right here and notice that there is this little item that says when saving the cache use a centralized cache file, that's the default setting and I argue at the very, very bad default setting. Here is the better setting which is used distributing cache files when possible. So you're going to have to turn this on as early as possible when you start using the Bridge, and if you switch to another person's machine that has the Bridge, do then the favor of turning this on as well. Then go ahead and click on OK.
Now before I do that, I do want to show you that on the PC, the centralized cache location is a little bit different, it's on your main C drive, Documents and Settings, whatever your user name is, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. But then it turns out to be very similar Adobe Bridge cache thumbnails and so on.
Alright, So I just thought I would point that out. In case you want to go find those files and see how much of your hard drive they are taking up if you've been using the Bridge for a while. Once you've done this though, go ahead and click OK. Now that takes care of part of the problem. What you've done so far is to make sure that from now on the Bridge goes ahead and distributes those cache files. But what about all those millions of billions of folders that you've already looked at? Well, they're not going to get distributed until you revisit them. So this next step is entirely up to you. If you want to reclaim your hard drive space and you're willing to throw away those thumbnails and those cache files, the ones that are already located in the centralized location.
Then go up to the Tools Menu, choose the Cache command. Now this maybe located toward the top of the menu or the bottom and then choose Purge the Central Cache, not Purge Cache for This Folder but Purge Central Cache in order to get rid of all those cache files. Now it's up to you, if you do that, this is a one time thing. If you do it, there is no going back. Notice, you get this warning that says, these are going to be deleted and your thumbnails are going to be lost. Now not for the distributed cache files, just for the ones located in the central location, but that does mean that all those cache files that you have crated in the past are going to go away. I am going to say, okay, because it is worth it in my opinion to go ahead and purge those files.
Then you'll see, all of these thumbnails regenerate down here at the bottom of the dialog box. Notice that happening there and that's because I went ahead and purged the central cache for this specific folder, the Bridge automatically has to generate a new cache. It does so without any intervention for me. It just goes ahead and regenerates that cache automatically and distributes it to this specific folder.
From now on, I am protected that also means that this cache file will copy from one machine to another when I copy the folder of images over. Then I'll go ahead and burn off the cache files as well, and that way well into the future, the Bridge on this machine or on any other machine will be able to see these custom thumbnail files.
So there you have it. You now have an idea of how the Bridge and Camera Raw work together, work fairly seamlessly together in fact, and how you can take advantage of the new multi-image processing functions of Camera Raw inside Photoshop CS2.