HD View & Deep Zoom Photoshop Plugin

This page describes a Photoshop import-export plugin available for the Windows OS.  This plugin is a tool that exports an image (8, 16, or 32 bit/channel; RGB or Grayscale) from Photoshop to a tiled image set, xml manifest and example web page.  The plugin is available from the Microsoft Research download page here (32 bit) or here (64 bit).  The same installation package also installs the hdmake tool.  A forum for community based support of the Photoshop plugin is available here

In order to use the plugin you will need to manually copy it to the appropriate folder.  The installation package will place HDView_x86.8be or HDView_x64.8be (the plugin) in the folder indicated during the installation.  You will then need to copy it to the Plug-Ins\Import-Export folder for your version of Photoshop, e.g. C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop CS4\Plug-Ins\Import-Export or C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop CS4 (64 Bit)\Plug-Ins\Import-Export.

Once installed you should see "HDView & Deep Zoom..." in the Photoshop File:Export menu (if Export is not available - make sure to click "Show All Menu Items" at the bottom of the File menu).  Invoking this option will give you the following dialog:

HD View Photoshop Plugin


The dialog UI is described here:

Folder ... Use this to choose the folder where the output files will be created.
Base File Name: The exporter will generate a folder of tiles, xml manifests for use with HDView and Deep Zoom, and an example web page.  The Base File Name will be used for each of these items.  For example in the above screen shot, the the tiles folder will be named SpaceNeedle_files, the Deep Zoom xml manifest SpaceNeedle.xml, the HD View xml manifest SpaceNeedle_hdv.xml, and the web page SpaceNeedle.htm.
Compression Quality A number from 1 to 100 indicating compression quality.  Larger numbers generate higher quality images but larger file sizes.  Smaller numbers have more compression artifacts but smaller file sizes.  Note that Quality '100' indicates lossless compression and will result in 'png' rather than 'jpg' output tiles.
Zip By default the files are output into a .zip archive, which can be previewed by HD View (but not HD View SL). To not zip the files and instead have them written directly to the file system, just uncheck the "zip" check box.
Split to Size (MB) If the zip checkbox is selected, then this field is used to optionally split into multiple archives each of maximum size specified here.
Projection Use this to indicate a 'flat' image, 'spherical' (also known as equirectangular) image or 'cylindrical' image.  A flat image is one that hasn't been warped by an image stitching program.  For flat images it is not necessary to supply a field of view or the horizontal/vertical extents.  Flat images will just result in a simple translation effect when viewed in HD View.  You will not see a surround viewer effect for flat images.

Spherical and cylindrical images are produced by image stitching applications, for example Photoshop, PTGui, Autopano and Windows Live Photo Gallery.  If you select one of these projections then you will also need to supply either a horizontal or vertical field of view or horizontal/vertical extents.  Selecting Center Image indicates to center the image either horizontally or vertically, in this case only a horizontal or vertical field of view need be specified.

Most stitching programs produce centered output.  Windows Live Photo Gallery and Autopano both store projection metadata in stitched image files.  The plugin will automatically read this metadata and initialize the dialog fields.  If the metadata is not present or no longer matches the image size (due to cropping and/or resizing of the image) the projection data must be provided.  For example see how to take the PTGui UI and fill out this field here
Viewer The exporter can generate either Silverlight Deep Zoom or HD View output or both ('Automatic').  Under Deep Zoom the 'Projection' options will be disabled as only flat images are supported.   Also Deep Zoom and Automatic will not be options for 16bit/channel or 32bit/channel sources.  Selecting HD View will always result in 'wdp' output tiles. Selecting Silverlight Deep Zoom will generate a web page that uses the HD View SL Silverlight program.  More information on HD View SL is available here.
Web Page Options You can control the generated web page via these options.  Full Screen means that a page that uses most of the page real-estate for your image will be generated.  Fixed Size lets you indicate the size of the HD View control on the generated page.

Selecting Open Web Page After Export will launch the system's default web browser on the newly generated page.