Mac OS X 10.4 custom file icon question (permissions problem?)

I have a folder with a very large number of photos, all .jpgs. They all used to have custom icons (where the icon is a thumbnail view of the photo) automatically created by Graphic Converter. When I get photos without custom icons, I put the photos in a folder, and dump the folder onto GC, where the preferences are set to automatically make the custom icons.

Somewhere along the way, maybe around the time I upgraded to Tiger but I’m not sure, a whole bunch of my photos lost their custom icons. So now I can’t browse the folder in large icon view to see what’s what.

First thing I tried was to dump the whole picture folder onto GC and let it remake the icons. That didn’t work.

Next thing I tried was cmd+I on the folder, and make sure it wasn’t locked. I checked ownership & permissions and made sure Owner, Group & Others was all read & write permissible, then dumped the folder on GC again hoping now its permissions for making changes to the files in the folder would work. Nope, that didn’t do it.

I checked some of the problematic files’ permissions to make sure they were read & write permissible. They are, according to “get info.” So I created a new folder on the desktop, moved some of the files into it, made sure this new folder had permissions, and dropped it on GC. Still won’t create custom icons.

Well, something, somewhere is refusing permissions to these files.

Last thing I tried was taking some of these photos, attaching them to a gmail message and sending them to myself (gmail seems to strip off unessential, non mac specific info). Then I downloaded them, dumped their new folder onto GC and voila, now GC can make custom icons for them. Deleted the old copies, dumped the new copies back in their original folder and everything’s fine.

So, what do you think is wrong with these files, that they won’t accept a custom icon when they used to? How can I fix this? I have so many pictures from over the years, it’d be a real pain to individually attach 400 pictures to gmail emails, mail them to myself and then download them, just to fix the icons.

Oh, and I’ve run “repair permissions” several times since I’ve noticed this problem. I’ve also run disk first aid and Disk Warrior. My computer was pronounced healthy, according to those programs.

I don’t have a direct answer to your problem, but I do have a suggestion: Rather than use Graphic Converter to create preview icons, let the Finder do it. Open a folder with pictures, then from the View menu select Show View Options. In the resulting utility window click on “Show icon preview”. Works for me. I usually then make the icon size as large as possible so I can see them well.

Note that this is a preference attached to the folder, so you would have to do this for every folder you have that contains pictures. (Or, do it on the fly for any folder with pictures you decide to look at.)

You just instantly solved my problem in the most elegant way possible!

I didn’t know you could do that (I knew about the large icon part). Thank you! No more tedious icon making for me. That should save space on file sizes, too.