fixed : convert video for WhatsApp

Question :

I have a short video file (a movie clip) that I want to share with my friends on WhatsApp. When I drag&drop it into the WhatsApp.app in macOS, the file appears to start uploading… but when done, there is no preview shown and no Play-button, just a file icon… as if it were an unknown or incompatible type of file…

What can I do to fix this ?

Answer :

Before uploading your video file to WhatsApp, you must make sure your video file meets WhatsApp’s file requirements :

  • video format preferably MP4 in H.264 or MPEG-4 codec ( MKV, AVI or 3GP will also do )
  • audio format preferably AAC ( or AC3 codec )
  • file size smaller than about 16MB ( in reality even 18MB might be okay )
    • usually, this means your movie clip will be about 90 seconds, but by tweaking the display size and the frame rate ( fps ) you can even squeeze 3 minutes or more into about 16MB

Do this to check your video’s specifications :

  • right-click ( CTRL-click ) on the movie clip’s icon
  • select “Get Info” from the popup-menu
  • in the window that opens, check these :
    • the file name either has the “.mov” or “.mp4” file extension
    • at “Size:” less that 18MB should be listed
    • at “Codecs:” either “H.264” or “H.264, AAC” is listed

If these are all okay, you should be able to just drag&drop the movie clip into the macOS WhatsApp.app.

If not, you will have to convert the movie clip. To do this conversion, do this :

  • first, download the FREE OmniConverter.app ( by 7littlemen ) from the Mac AppStore :
  • then, open the OmniConverter.app and click on “Convert Video” from the list on the left
  • then, drag&drop your movie clip file onto the OmniConverter window
  • now, at the right of the arrow (in the middle), check if “MP4” is listed and the file size is less than 18MB
    • if you do not see “MP4” listed at the right of the middle arrow, click the Format-button
      • in the window that opens, select the “Device”-tab
      • then, select “iPhone” from the list on the left
      • then, select the “iPhone HD” option
      • now, click the Confirm-button
    • if you see a file size larger than 18MB listed at the right of the middle arrow, click the Edit-button
      • in the window that opens, at “Video”>”Encoder:” select “H.264”
      • and at “Audio”>”Encoder:” select “AAC”
      • leave the rest as is and click the Confirm-button
  • back in the Convert Video window, click on the Start-button ( circled arrow icon, at the right )
  • now, wait for the conversion to complete
    • if the file size already was less than 18MB, you’re usually okay and you will not need to do extra compression
    • if the file size was over 18MB, do this :
      • open the OmniConverter.app and click on “Compress Video” from the list on the left
      • drag&drop the .mp4-video you’ve just converted onto the OmniConverter window
      • check if the file size listed at the right of the arrow (in the middle) is less than 16MB
        • if so, click the Start-button on the right
        • if not, click the Edit-button (below the arrow)
        • in the window that opens, set the “Quality:”-slider in-between “Mid” and “High”, set “Resolution:” to “720P” and set “Frame Rate:” to “24 FPS”
        • if at “Size:” it now says anything less than 16MB, click the Confirm-button
        • if at “Size:” it says anything over 30MB, set “Resolution:” to “480P”
        • if at “Size:” it says anything between 20MB and 30MB, set the “Quality:”-slider to “Mid”
        • now, if at “Size:” it still says anything over 18MB, start tweaking the available settings until at “Size:” it says about 15MB ( see how much the file size decreases when you tweak each setting to find the optimal combination of settings )
        • when done, click the Confirm-button
      • now, in the “Compress Video” window, click the Start-button
      • …and wait for the compression to finish

After the file conversion, drag&drop the converted movie clip into the WhatsApp.app to share it with your friends…

That’s it !

enjoy 😉

fixed : convert old .flv movie files to .mp4 for free

Question :

I’ve found this old Flash videos (in .flv format) on an old hard disk and I want to play them on my Mac / iPhone, but QuickTime gives a “The document could not be opened”-error, stating “The file isn’t compatible with QuickTime Player.”

Is there a simple way to convert them to a video file format that QuickTime can handle (preferably .mp4) ?

Answer :

Yes, there is : the FREE Smart Converter app can do this for you very easily. Just do this :

  • open the SmartConverter.app
  • when the Smart Converter window opens, drag&drop the .flv-video file that you want to convert onto it
  • then, click the Mac-button (in-between the QuickTime and iPad buttons)
  • then, click the blue Convert-button (bottom right) and wait for the conversion to finish
  • then, after noticing that the blue Convert-button has changed into a blue ShowFile-button, click on it
  • in the Finder-window that opens, click on the converted video file (that now has an .mp4 file extension) and it will open in the QuickTime Player app

That’s it !

enjoy 😉

fixed : compress video for WhatsApp (or eMail)

Question :

I would like to send a small piece of a video I just shot at a birthday party to a group of friends on WhatsApp, but it’s too big to upload.

How can I compress it for easy viewing on Whatsapp ?

 

Answer :

If you have shot the video on your iPhone you can send it right away, and iOS will do the compression for you.

However, if you already have the video on your Mac and you want to compress it before you send it using WhatsApp Desktop (for macOS), do this :

  • make sure you trim down the length of the video to a clip that only includes the most relevant part of the video
    • you can do this in QuickTime Player (included in macOS for FREE)
  • use Smart Converter (FREE from Mac AppStore) and choose ‘for iPhone or iPod’, then click ‘Convert’ to convert
    • this will convert to an .mp4 video with 1280×720 resolution at 30 frames per second and AAC sound (file size ca. 10MB per 10 seconds)
  • use Handbrake (FREE from handbrake.fr) and choose ‘Presets’ > ‘Gmail Large 3 minutes 720p30’, then click ‘Start’ to convert
    • this will convert to an .mp4 video with 1280×720 resolution at 30 frames per second and AAC sound (file size ca. 2MB per 10 seconds)

Note : even though the frame rate and screen size are the same, the ‘Gmail’-ready file will be much smaller than the ‘iPhone’-ready file, even though (or rather ‘because’) this comes with the downside that quick-moving objects will blur in the ‘Gmail’-ready video (compared to the ‘iPhone’-ready video that hardly has any blur and is similar in size and quality to the ‘Fast 720p30’ preset in Handbrake) 

That’s it !

enjoy 😉

fixed : finding faces in imported old iPhoto pictures

Question :

I have imported my old iPhoto database into Photos.app as you described in your post on this subject. [click here to view the original post] But now I’ve got them into Photos.app it turns out that the faces I had tagged when I was still using iPhoto are not automatically recognized by the Faces function of Photos.app…

Is there any way to solve this ?

 

Answer :

Yes, there is, but it’s not as easy as you might have hoped…

There are 2 sides to your question, so let’s answer both separately :

  1. How to find people in pictures imported from iPhoto ?
  2. How to get people from iPhoto pictures into Photos.app Faces database ?

HOW TO FIND PEOPLE IN PICTURES IMPORTED FROM iPHOTO ?

When you import an iPhoto database into Photos.app the faces you had tagged way back then are not recognized as Faces, but as Keywords… so the easiest way to find pictures of  these people is this :

  • open Photos.app
  • click on “Photos” in the list on the left (the top option, in the Library chapter)
  • then click on the “Showing: All Items”-button (top right, just below the “Search” field)
  • from the pulldown menu, select “Keyword Manager”
  • in the separate “Keywords”-window that pops up, in the bottom part, named “Keywords” you will find labels with all the names of the people you had tagged in Faces of iPhoto
  • select the label of the person you were looking for (don’t mind that the label is greyed out, in this situation they are still selectable) and drag&drop it into the top part, named “Quick Group”
  • then click on the red button top left to close the “Keywords”-window
  • now, back in the main view of Photos.app, click on the “Showing: All Items”-button (again…)
  • from the pulldown menu, select the name of that particular person at “Show Only Keywords”
  • now, you will only see pictures with this particular person you where looking for
  • scroll through the photos and find the pictures you were looking for
  • remember to put the “Showing Only: …”-button back to “Showing: All Items” before you quit Photos.app

HOW TO  GET PEOPLE FROM iPHOTO PICTURES INTO PHOTOS.APP FACES DATABASE ?

After you have created keywords for people you were searching for in Photos.app, you can start to get them into the Faces database of Photos.app… to do that, do this :

  • make sure that the button top right is labeled “Showing Only:…” (in which the dots are substituted by the person’s name)
  • now, dubble-click on a photo that the person is in
  • the photo will enlarge and all faces that are recognized as faces will have a circle around them with a label below them saying “unnamed”
  • if the face of the person you had in mind does have a unnamed-label, click on the label and substitute the “unnamed” by typing the person’s real name over it
  • if the face of the person you had in mind did not get a label automatically, you will have to add it by hand… to do so, do this :
    • click on the “info ( encircled i )”-button top right
    • in the popup window that opens, click on the “plus ( encircled + )”-button
      • make sure that you do this when the name tags are visible in the photo, else it will have no effect
      • if the name tags aren’t displayed, click anywhere on the picture and they will reappear
    • when you click the “plus”-button, a circle wit ha name tag labeled “Click to Name” will appear in the middle of the picture
    • drag this circle over to the face of the person you would like to tag
      • if the circle is too big or too small, you can adjust its size by moving the dot on the right side of the circle
      • if for some reason you want to delete the circle, click on the X-sign on the left edge of the circle
    • then click on “Click to Name” and typ the name of the person whose face is in the circle
    • when done with this picture, proceed to the next picture by swiping from right to left
    • when done with tagging, go back by double-clicking anywhere on the picture
      • after that, you can even get out of the selection of this particular person’s photos by going to the “Showing Only:…”-button and changing it into “All Items” (so the button will say “Showing: All Items”)

Yes, it a painstakingly labor-intensive job to put all those name tage back in to each and every old picture, but you will have to do this for a lot of old pictures before Photo.app’s own Faces function will start to recognise and label people in those old pictures automatically…

enjoy 😉

 

fixed : export eMail message as EML file

Question :

I had a complaint about the amount of spam I was getting from one particular sender, so our system administrator asked me to send him samples of the eMails in EML-format so he can have a look into the eMail-headers and adjust the spam-filter.

But how do I export eMail messages as EML-files ?

 

Answer :

EML is short for eMail ; an .eml-file is the typical way for macOS (and MacOSX) to store individual eMails that are not in your mailboxes.

The easiest way to export an eMail message from Mail.app to an EML-file is to Drag&Drop :

  • in Mail.app, select the one eMail that you would like to export
  • click on the eMail and drag it out of your Mail.app onto your Desktop (simply put : “Drag&Drop”)
  • now, on your Desktop, the eMail will be automatically be saved as an EML-file
  • you can double check this by right-clicking on the eMail-file on the Desktop and choosing Get Info ; at ‘Kind:’ it will be listed as ‘Email message’, and at ‘Name & Extension:’ it will be listed with the ‘.eml’-file extension if you uncheck “Hide Extension”

Then you can share the eMail as an attachment in another eMail or put it on a USB-stick or upload it to your system administrator or whatever you like.

That’s it 😉

enjoy !

fixed : burn .iso to bootable Windows DVD-R in OSX 10.11 El_Capitan

Question :

As I need to install Windows in Boot Camp mode on my Mac, I’m trying to burn an .iso disk image of Windows 7 onto a DVD-R from within OSX 10.11 El_Capitan.

But when I right-click on the .iso-file and select “Burn Disk Image “windows-7.iso” to Disc” from the popup-list,  everything seems to go okay, but I end up with a DVD-R with just the .iso-file on it…

It’s not a bootable DVD-R of Windows 7 as I was intending to do… what is wrong ?

 

Answer :

In OSX 10.11 El_Capitan the procedure for doing this has slightly altered compared to previous versions of OSX :

  • right-click on the .iso-file and select “Open With” and then “DiskImageMounter(default)” from the popup-list
  • now the .iso will mount in the Finder
  • then start the Disk Utility application
  • in the window that opens, select the mounted .iso from the list on the left ; it’s listed with an unpronounceable name under “Disk Images”
  • then, in the top menu bar of the screen, go to “Images” and choose “Convert…” from the pulldown list
  • in the pulldown window that opens, select the original .iso-file and click “Open”
  • in the next pulldown window, at “Save As:” replace the temporary Untitled-name with the unpronounceable name of the mounted .iso you’ve seen before
  • then, at “Where:” choose a destination to create the converted .iso-file, and make sure “Encryption:” is set to “none” and “Image Format:” is set to “DVD/CD master” ; then click “Save”
  • now, a .cdr-file will be created in the location you selected at “Where:”
  • right-click on the .cdr-file and select “Burn Disk Image “[name].cdr” to Disc”
  • in the window that opens, select your SuperDrive (or external DVD-burner) and click on the triangular arrow at the far right side
  • the window will be extended, and at “Burn Options” choose the slowest speed possible (if this option is greyed-out, leave it as-is), and at “After Burning” choose “Verify burned data”
  • then put a DVD-R in your Superdrive (or external DVD-burner) and click “Burn”
  • now, the end result will be a bootable Windows installer-DVD

enjoy !

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fixed : get usable (.tif or .jpg) pictures out of a PowerPoint-presentation

Question :

My colleague sent me a PowerPoint-presentation with pictures in it that I want to use in my own Keynote-presentation. But, whenever I select a picture in the PowerPoint-presentation and drag-&-drop it onto my Desktop (as I usually do in OSX to get a picture out of a website or alike), I get a file named “Picture Clipping.pictClipping”. When I double-click on that, I get a Finder window with the correct preview and a line of info saying “Clipping contents: TIFF image”. But I can’t import that .pictClipping file into my Keynote-presentation as a picture. Neither can I find any way to get the TIFF-image out of the .pictClipping-file.

What can I do ?

 

Answer :

You’ve stumbled upon a hard-to-tackle problem with PowerPoint-presentations.

The solutions is rather simple, but takes a some effort. You can choose to either export  only one picture, or export all pictures from the PowerPoint-presentation :

If you only need one picture :

1- make sure you have GraphicConverter installed (if you don’t have it, you can download it from the LemkeSoft.de website for FREE and use it in “try it”-mode)

2- open your PowerPoint-presentation and drag&drop the picture you need onto the Desktop ; it will appear as a file named “Picture Clipping.pictClipping”

3- right-click on the “Picture Clipping.pictClipping”-icon and select “Open with…” from the pulldown menu that appears, then select “Other…” and select GraphicConverter 9 from the list that appears

4- GraphicConverter will now display the picture ; select “File” from the top menu bar, and “Save As…” from the pulldown menu that appears

5- in the window that opens, select select the destination folder and at “File Format:” choose JPEG/JFIF, PNG or TIFF and click the “Save”-button

6- then in the Finder, go to the destination folder and drag&drop the picture into your Keynote-presentation

…that’s it 😉

If you need multiple (or even all) pictures  :

1- make sure you have GraphicConverter installed (if you don’t have it, you can download it from the LemkeSoft.de website for FREE and use it in “try it”-mode)

2- right-click on the PowerPoint-presentation’s icon and click on “Duplicate” from the pulldown list that appears ; if your original was named “presentation.ppt” the duplicate will be named “presentation copy.ppt”

3- select the icon of the “presentation copy”-file and change the .ppt or .pptx file extension into .dat (when asked “Are you sure… ?”, click on the “Use .dat”-button)

4- now, right-click on the “presentation copy.dat”-file’s icon and click on “Open With” in the pulldown list that appears, then select “GraphicConverter” and click on it

5- in GraphicConverter, you will now see only the first picture from the PowerPoint-presentation, but in the bottom bar, you will see “Page: 1 of X” (in which X is the total number of pictures), there you can scroll through all pictures ; then, from the “File”-menu, select “Convert & Modify”

6- in the window that opens, you will see 3 columns : in the left column, make sure that “Function: Convert” is selected, and “Destination Format:” is set to JPEG/JFIF, PNG or TIFF

7- in the middle column, you will see the “From:”-button and the file named “presentation copy.dat” (with the first picture as it’s icon) ; in the right column you will see the “To:”-button ; there you should select your desired destination folder

8- then, click on the “Go”-button at the bottom of the left column (and all pictures will be exported the way you have asked)

9- do not forget to drag the “presentation copy.dat”-file to the Trash (and empty the Trash)

10- in the Finder, you can now open the destination folder and drag&drop the picture(s) you need into your Keynote-presentation

…that’s it – enjoy !

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