One of the cool things I like about the M5Board is that each post we make has that part off to the left, with the avatar image and other stuff showing who the post is from. I presume we all try to choose an avatar that's reasonably close to the cars we actually have; after all, why would someone choose an image that isn't either what they have or what they wish they did? See...here's Gustav's information:
When I first started on the board, I was checking out that information for various posts. You can see that they live in such and such, and they post all the time, and are widely thanked, and so on. Then I saw that "Garage" link, and I thought "Oh, Cool! Everyone's Garage has a link to photos of their REAL cars! Schweet!". See, here's the link on Gustav's info:
Well, it wasn't long before I realized that pretty much the only people with actual pictures behind those links were Gustav and a few others who had somehow found "the secret". Indeed, my own Garage link led to a very complicated page with NO pictures! I even uploaded some, but they didn't show up there. And so it was, geek that I am, that I set out to figure this thing out once and for all. Of course, once I did, the documentation dweeb that I am made me write down instructions. You can thank Gustav for making me post the instructions here.
I hope EVERYONE uses these instructions to upload photos of their beasts so we can see what your talking about when you say what mods you have, how your Black Sapphire 2008 E60 M5 smoked some poser in a beat up 3-series with a duct-tape M8
badge, and so on.
The instructions go like this: find your way to your by-user-name gallery, add pictures, wait for gustav to approve them, and then you're done. Of course, nothing on a computer is EVER that easy, so here are the more-detailed steps. I'm not going to cover the advanced features, because just getting them posted the easy way is complicated enough!
Getting to Your Gallery Page
The easiest way to get there is to have already posted something. Log in to your M5Board account, and go to one of those posts you created/commented/made-snide-remarks on. When you get there, click on that Garage link in your profile area. I'll use my own info section just for the fun of it. Click on the Garage link, like shown below:
That will take you to a page titled "m5board.com Owners gallery" (check the top of the browser window). The middle of the page will show these two big black boxes, like so:
Notice how the above has NO pictures? Yes, that's because you haven't uploaded any...which is, of course, the next step....
(If it DOES have pictures, then just why ARE you reading this?
Adding Pictures to your Owners Gallery
In the top of those two boxes, you'll see some links in light-gray. If you didn't know to look for them, you might very well miss 'em. Click on the last one, "Upload Photos", like what's circled in red here:
That brings you to the Image Upload page. In the first area, "m5board.com Owners gallery Image Upload" (below), there are a couple things to notice. First, it probably says you have lots of disk space available. It's true. Just don't trust the numbers...their counts of bytes versus kb are kinda wacko: kb should be bytes, but whatever.
The two things to definitely notice are (1) the image types it will allow, and (2) the maximum file size.
So, what this means is that you can upload ONLY jpg, gif and png files. No, I won't bore you with what those mean; typically your photos will probably be jpg. If you're a photographer, and you work in RAW files, don't upload those; it will hate you. If you remember GIF images, or if you know what PNGs are, then you probably know enough to know when you do and don't have them. Wait...is that circular logic?
The other thing to notice on the page is that it says the maximum single-image file size is 20,000 kb. (Fellow Geeks, kindly ignore the 1000/1024 thing for a minute, okay?) That means the largest file size it will allow you to upload for a single image is 20 Megabytes. Don't ignore that limit, 'cause it will whine heavily and these instructions will not help you get out of that mess. Resize, crop, do what you need to in order to keep your images smaller than 20MB. What's this, you say? "I've never SEeeeeeen an image larger than 20MB!" Yeah, well I have: when I print 24"x36" posters at 360DPI, the files typically are 640MB or larger. Don't upload those...don't even THINK about it.
Okay, moving on.....
Down below, you'll see the Upload Photo box. That's where you'll do the work. Check this thing out:
To upload images, just do the right thing in each of the areas 1,2, and 3 above.....
, DO NOT CHANGE THIS
! The category "Pictures sorted by Member name" is the key here. If you change that category, then the images will not show up when people click on your Garage link. So don't change it.
is where you select up to three of your finest images to upload. This particular area of the page only lets you upload three at a time; that's just the way it is. Yes, there are some other options further down the page that claim to let you do a whole folder, but a) the pix have to already be posted on the Web somewhere, and b) I was not able to get it to work. So I'm not going to cover that.
To select the image files, click the Browse button, navigate to the folder on your computer where you store the images, select one and then click Okay. Remember, it's only going to work correctly if you select the proper image type, and the file is less than 20 MB.
[[If you really need a pictorial walk-through on selecting a file, let me know and I'll add it. But, if you can use an SMG and an iDrive, I think you can probably figure out how to select a file on your computer]]
is where you'll add a title, description, and search keywords that will be applied to all the images you're uploading this time. You'll have a chance to change them per-picture in just a bit, but this is a convenient way to add the same basic information to all three.
For the default title, I recommend using the text that you set when you signed up, in your user profile for "My Car" . That's on your control panel page, under the "Edit Your Details" area, in case you want to change it:
Okay, back to the image upload page. For the default description, add any useful information you might want to give. Remember, this will go on all of the images you're uploading right now, so leave out any individual-picture stuff for now. And, this information does take up space on the gallery page, so maybe keep the verbiage to a minimum, eh?
For the Keywords, enter in stuff that someone might search for, like your user name, the car's color, model, etc., like "2010 Black M5 Thom5".
Down below in the "Extra Options" you can also set stuff. Yeah, stuff. They're more advanced options that I won't go into here.
Once you've selected files and added the information (and NOT changed Category in box 1!), click the Upload/Submit button, like this:
While your picture(s) are being uploaded, you'll see this status message. Don't worry...it will take some time...just let it finish. (Most people's Internet connection from home is much slower going "out", and much faster coming "in". That's why you can download a picture from the Web faster than you can upload it to the m5board.com servers.)
When it's done, you'll get a page with a big black box titled "PhotoPost Add Photos", like this:
If you uploaded multiple images, you'll see a section for each image. This is where you can change the title and other settings for the individual pictures. A couple of notes:
- Unless you want to discard the uploaded image, leave the floating "Add" check-box in the middle checked.
- If you want to add the photo to another category, use the "Optional Category" drop-downs. Like before, do NOT change the primary Category setting; leave it as "Pictures sorted by Member name".
When you're done, click the "Process" button at the bottom of the box. You'll see a progress box, and then one telling you that the image upload completed successfully:
Then your browser will bring you back to your main gallery page, like this:
A couple things to note on this page.
in the image), see how the images are listed as being in the "Pictures sorted by Member name" and then under your name? That means that they were loaded into the correct category. If they don't show like that, then the problem is very likely that you changed the Category during upload or processing. Bad user!
in the image), you will see a thumbnail-sized image that says "image pending approval". This means that the the image won't be shown to anyone until the administrators (Gustav, et al
) have drooled all over your wonderful vehicular smut, and have had their way with it. I'm not sure if the software does it, or if the admin has to do it, but they at least stamp it with an m5board.com mark. Don't worry, this is so people are less likely to steal pictures from our glorious m5board.com and post it on like the Honda Civic board. It does NOT mean that m5board is claiming all rights to your photographic artistry.
If you have more images to upload, just click that "Upload Photos" link...
...and go though the process again, and again, as many times as it takes to get your garage filled!
But now, as you might guess, you are moving on to the last step:
Waiting for Gustav to Approve The Images
This might take a while, if Gustav is out enjoying a one of Eskilstuna Ílkultur's
finest, or similar. If your images don't get approved in a couple days, go ahead and send Gustav a PM, if you can do that. Otherwise, keep waiting, and post some cool stuff about you and your favorite ride!
When your images are approved, you'll get one e-mail for each image, typically from Gustav himself, with the subject line "The Unofficial BMW M5 Homepage photo upload approved". Or, possibly "declined", if your photos is not appropriate.
Once all your images are approved, people can click on your Garage link and see your actual vehicular alter-ego!
Hope that helped, and I hope it means I'll see many many more Garage links that actually GO somewhere useful!