How Bridge Differs from the Browser

How Bridge Differs from the Browser

If you're already familiar with the File Browser in Photoshop CS, you'll be happy to know that Adobe Bridge is one of the great reasons why you might want to move up to CS2. One of the most important enhancements is that, although Bridge can act as though it's built into Photoshop, it isn't. It's a standalone program and it works equally well with all the Creative Suite apps. Once you're editing, you can really speed up Photoshop by closing Bridge and, therefore, turning considerable horsepower over to Photoshop. If you want to restart it, it's so easy you'd almost think it had been there all along.

The following features are significantly new and different in Bridge for CS2:

A new ranking system

This feature is an important distinction between Bridge and Browser. To put it simply, Bridge's system is better because it's more simply and direct. You rank with Stars and classify by Labels. What each means is up to you, so there's less to think about.

Bridge is scriptable

If you're the programmer type (I'm definitely not), there may be ways you can enhance Bridge's workflow capabilities. After a while, you may also be able to find such scripts on the Internet (in fact, maybe even by the time you read this).

Customizable background shades

I find this especially useful when using the Slideshow or Filmstrip for showing a client approval slideshow on an LCD projector. It's just more likely to impress the client if you can give your presentation its own "look." You can't actually change the color, because only gray is neutral and, therefore, doesn't compete with the colors in the image.

Drag and Drop is implemented exactly as it is in Windows Explorer or Mac Finder

You can move a folder into or out of another folder by dragging it from the Lightbox window to one of the folders in the Folders panel or to a subfolder or parent folder in your OS.

Multiple browser windows can be open at the same time

If you view Bridge in Compact Mode, you can see several windows at once, making it easy to use the drag and drop feature to consolidate files from several different folders into a single new folder. If you want to copy the file you're dragging to a new folder, press Cmd/Ctrl while dragging.

Variable thumbnail sizing is as easy as dragging the sizing slider

Of course, you can still size the Preview window just by dragging its bounding bars.


It's a good idea to put the Bridge cache file for a given folder inside that folder. Then Bridge doesn't have to recalculate large, detailed thumbnails and previews or the sort order of files if the folder is moved. From the Bridge menu, choose BridgePreferences

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