JAlbum is an easy to use open source album and gallery software to add a professional gallery to your web site. If you are looking for an easy to install album or gallery for your site, JALbum offers the perfect solution. A unique software, JAlbum is first downloaded to your computer where you add your images off-line, then the program helps you upload the completed gallery to your site through a built-in ftp function. It takes about 20 MB in space on your computer, but the albums themselves can be compressed to be lean within your actual hosted web space. You can easily download the program (for free) as well as several very nicely designed "skins" to use as your gallery backgrounds from the main site at http://jalbum.net/. The newest version, v. 7.2 was just released this summer.
TAKING A LOOK FIRST & INSTALLATION
To view the program in action, the main JALbum site features a large forum list of published albums that users have submitted for others to view in the
User album showcase. A number of skins are available to give your site gallery a customized look that suits your web site. The various looks are really impressive - I highly recommend that you take the time to browse through their Skin Showcase to get a feel for what is possible: you can literally find a skin for any type of web site or genre of image. The designers of the software also encourage users to create their own skins, and to share them with the rest of the JAlbum users (currently over 7 million and growing daily!) The main web site also hosts a General Support Forum , where you can ask questions and read about other's innovations and solutions to problems encountered - which shouldn't be many. I found the software very easy to use, intuitive in layout and extremely robust and user-friendly.
The current version of JAlbum is v7.2 which has been continuously improved by the authors. The authors also enthusiastically state that JAlbum is free, and will always remain so. Which is amazing, since it is so professional and adaptable. You can customize the general skin (color, theme, layout, thumbnail sizes and organization, navigation, links, music, comments, captions, watermarks, logos, and so on). You can also dictate which language your album is published in, since JAlbum has been programmed to accommodate 31 languages. Your published album is viewable in HTML, so your viewers do not need special plug-ins to view. The software also allows you to create albums of other types of files such as pdf, music album covers, or video files. It also is amenable to Java Bean functions to extend its versatility. Since it runs on Java, it is conducive to any computer or web operating system - including Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Solaris, AIX, OS/2, and eComStation.
THE ADMINISTRATION AREA
Once you have installed the program successfully onto your computer, it is easy to set up your first gallery. You can import one or several skins (though there are already several that come packed with the installation file) into the software admin area, so that you can change the look of your album(s) as you wish.
The admin area is very intuitive, you simply drag and drop your selected images into your album, choose a skin as the background, type in captions, titles, links, and other information you wish to show with your pictures and click the Make Album button. Once you have found the look you like, you again press a button to Publish Album, type in your web server info, and the album publishes it for you into your server space. Full documentation to guide you through the steps to make your galleries is also available.
Click to see Enlarged Screenshot of Admin Area
Click to see An Example of a Published Gallery
This program really is a great application that will please many web site owners looking for a reliable and professional looking gallery for their site . I highly recommend it, and encourage everyone to check it out, and make a donation if possible, if they choose to use the software. The authors, Swedish residents, David Ekholm and Daniel Frisk deserve both kudos and a reward for such an amazing program...especially since they are offering it free, as open source software. To sum the program up in their own words, the authors state, "JAlbum is a gallery software that makes web albums from your digital images. We aim to make it the easiest to use and most powerful tool in this category - and always keep it free!"