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How to Add Plug-Ins and Specify Type Options in Photoshop CS6

Plug-ins are mini software programs that add features to Photoshop CS6. The Plug-Ins folder is where Photoshop stores all your filters and other plug-in add-ons. A default folder is created when you install Photoshop.

Photoshop CS6 allows you to specify an additional folder to search other than its own Plug-Ins folder. This additional folder may come in handy if you want to keep your third-party add-ons separate from Photoshop’s native plug-ins.

An auxiliary plug-ins directory (not nested within Photoshop’s own Plug-Ins folder) can simplify managing those extra filters, and you can turn off their use (potentially speeding up Photoshop’s load time) by deselecting the Additional Plug-Ins Folder check box in this dialog box.

You can also use this option when you have some plug-ins installed for another application and want to share them with Photoshop without having to make extra copies in your Photoshop Plug-Ins directory.

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Here are a couple tips on using plug-ins:

  • To activate a new plug-ins folder: Select the Additional Plug-Ins Folder check box. In the dialog box that appears, navigate to the folder you want to use and select it. Click Choose. You then need to exit Photoshop and restart the program to activate the new directory.

  • If you have a plug-in or folder you want to deactivate: Use a tilde (~) as the first character of the plug-in or folder name. Photoshop ignores the plug-in(s) or folder(s) specified. Just remove the tilde from the name to activate the plug-in or folder. This can come in handy if you’re having a program glitch and want to deactivate your plug-ins to troubleshoot whether they’re causing the problem.

  • Filters: Check the Show All Filter Gallery Groups and names to bring the filter groups, such as Artistic, Brush Strokes, and Sketch, back to the Filter menu, and not just the Filter Gallery.

  • Extension Panels: Choose whether to allow Extension panels like Kuler to connect to the Internet for updates and new goodies. Also choose whether to have your Extension panels load when you start Photoshop.

The Type Preferences enable you to establish your font options as follows:

  • Use Smart Quotes: Smart quotes are the curly quotes that typographers use for quotation marks and apostrophes. Straight quotes should be used for abbreviations for feet and inches.

  • Show Text Engine Options: Photoshop shows either East Asian (European and Advanced East Asian languages) or Middle Eastern (European, Arabic, Hebrew) text options in the Character and Paragraph panels.

  • Enable Missing Glyph Protection: If certain glyphs (characters) are missing, Photoshop makes a substitution if this option is selected.

  • Show Font Names in English: Photoshop displays Asian font names in English if this option is selected (and you select the Show Asian Text Option).

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