Editing Photo Files

You can use Xara to easily edit your JPEG photos and save back the modified JPEG. And unlike most photo editors, you can do this multiple times without loss of quality, even though the JPEG format is a lossy format. That's because Xara is able to save your edits in a lossless way, along with the original photo. Here's how it works.

First open the JPEG, using "File" > "Open", drag and drop, or in Windows File Explorer right click and choose your Xara software from the "open with" list. The photo is opened as a Photo document.

Edit the photo using the Photo Tools as described above.

If you then do "File" > "Save" ("Ctrl + S"), the JPEG file you loaded will be overwritten with the modified image. However by default Xara also saves your photo in its native .xar format. This file is placed into a "Masters" folder alongside your JPEG file. It has the same name as your photo file but with a .xar extension. The .xar file includes within it your original photo without the modifications applied, and of course details of your edits.

In future if you load the modified JPEG file in order to edit it further, Xara will look in the Masters folder to see if there is a .xar file available for that photo. If so, the .xar file is loaded instead of the JPEG file and you can continue editing from where you left off. When you next save, the JPEG file is again overwritten and an updated .xar file also saved into the Masters folder.

Of course if you don't want to overwrite your original JPEG file with your changes, you can use "File" > "Save As", to save the modified photo elsewhere, or use the many export facilities to export your photo into different formats.

You can get hold of the original photo from the .xar file by opening it, opening the Bitmap Gallery, right clicking on the photo and choosing the Save option.

In the Photo Editing tab of the "Utilities" > "Options" dialog you can choose to change the saving behavior described above. You can choose to not have a .xar file automatically saved for you into the Masters sub-folder, or you can choose to have the original photo file saved there instead.

Note if you turn off this original photo preservation, you'll lose the original photo when you do a Save!



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