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Thread: Changing the icons for folders in "My Places"

  1. #1
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    Default Changing the icons for folders in "My Places"

    Hi guys, I've got several thousand placemarks in Google Earth in a range of folders, and then folders within folders. What I'd like to do is change the icons for some of my folders. For exmaple, the default icon is an image of a blue folder. So that I can easily distinguish between different types of folders, I'd like to change the icon to an image of a red folder for some, while keeping others blue.

    I know how to change the icon for a placemark - right click on it, select properties and click the button in the upper right corner - but this approach doesn't work for folders. From a quick internet search it seems that I might need to edit the code for the folders, and I don't know how to do that so could someone please post a walkthrough of it, or refer me to another post as chances are other people have had the same problem in the past?

    Many thanks
    polksta

  2. #2
    Super Moderator BillyBob's Avatar
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    You can change the folder icons by right-clicking on them in the folder tree on the left in Windows Explorer, clicking "Properties", and selecting the "Customise" tab.

    If you want to change the folders in the libraries, My Pictures, etc., you have to go to >> C:/Users/your name/.... and change the icons in there.

  3. #3
    ṨῤἵḋểṙẊƻƻ SpiderX22's Avatar
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    As far as I know, right now you can't. In version 4 it was easy because you could change everything within the Google Earth folder because everything was image files (information).

    Now the way it's done, in Google Earth 6, everything is stored as .rcc files, so you won't be able to easily edit them unless you know how to edit .rcc (which I don't).

    It's a feature I've long wanted in GE, along with being able to move multiple placemarks. I too have lots of folders and being able to color them would be super useful.
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    Super Moderator BillyBob's Avatar
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    Where are these folders you're talking about?

    All my Google Earth stuff is in folders of my choosing, I have no special Google Earth folders.

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    Hi guys, thanks for your posts. Billybob, I'm not trying to change Windows folders (although thanks for the guide on how to do that), but Google Earth's "My Places" file. Placemarks in that are arranged in folders. SpiderX22, thanks for the update on what can and can't be done. Given that I don't know any programming at all (well, one first year university course) I guess I'll have to wait and hope GE add some easy way to make these changes!

  6. #6
    Super Moderator BillyBob's Avatar
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    I'm sorry, I don't have a "My Places" folder, is it in amongst the My Pictures, My Documents, My Downloads, etc., folders under Libraries?

    If it is, you can change the folders as per my first post.

  7. #7
    ṨῤἵḋểṙẊƻƻ SpiderX22's Avatar
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    Sorry about the confusion. Let me try to clear this up.

    "My Places" is a reference to Google Earth. When you open up GE, all your placemarks and folders are stored in "My Places"; think of it as a master folder. You cannot delete the folder, you can only delete it's contents (which would be all your files within GE...so don't). Content in this folder will be saved (usually*) when you shut down GE. I say usually because when GE crashes or rarely even when it closes, it won't save your most recent work. I've learned, especially from GE 5, that I should ALWAYS save my work in GE before closing. There is also the "Temporary Places" folder, work in there is deleted when you close GE.

    If you wish to edit things in GE, you can edit files within the GE folders. These are located in C:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Google Earth\client (that's on a Windows 64 bit, if you're on 32 bit, check the regular Program Files folder).

    The setup of these folders changed. In older GE versions, there were folders of image files, these image files could be modified and when you opened up GE, what you changed would show up. This was REALLY cool, since you could change what the icons looked like, you could change what all your folders looked like (including the KML loading one)[but all folders, not individual folders], and you could even change the water color, amongst other things.

    Things that can be easily edited are image files (open in an image editor) and .ini or .txt files (open in a text editor). The main client folder has no image files, and the only .ini files aren't useful (you can read the settings for the various graphics cards, but beyond that, can't do anything). The only things you can [usefully]edit are in the "res" folder. There's 4 .png files, but they have VERY limited use. "cursor_crosshair_inverse.png" refers to the cursor that appears when you add a path or polygon or use the ruler (I turned mine into a dinosaur and noticed the change). I have no idea where "cursor_crosshair_thick.png" or "unknown_plugin.png" or "spin_icon.png" show up in GE though. I haven't played with it, but I presume doppler.txt will change how your doppler images look. Since I never use doppler images in GE, it's not useful to me, but it appears you can modify the display colors (format: R G B elongation opacity fog_density speed0 speed1 speed2 speed3).

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    What you CAN still edit is in the flightsim folder. I never really experimented with this, but you can do some mighty cool "hacking". You can change lots of variable and it will visibly change in GE.

    The flightsim.ini file has some really cool things you can change, such as the mouse sensitivity and where you start. You can change all your takeoff locations, but I'm not sure the names will change on GE. Changing the coordinates stored there will change where you start, so you can start at your house, flying over NYC, etc. There's also a line that says, "The last element in each row is for the future game controller configuration" ; I wonder what that means (edit: see the controller folder).

    The earth.ini file shouldn't really be changed; it contains the parameters of the Earth, such as Earth radius, air pressure, and air density.

    The keyboard folder lets you change your keyboard controls (either generic or specifically for a plane). This is SUPER helpful, if you want to change your key configuration.

    The hud folder lets you change what your Heads Up Display (your screen) shows, but it's not easily edited.

    I believe the controller folder is what was referenced in my statement above. Here you can change your game controller settings. There's a bunch of joysticks listed that you can edit, but if you have none of those, I presume you can use the generic.ini.

    The aircraft folder is the most interesting. This let's you change how your aircraft actually performs; settings are specific to each aircraft. You could for example change one of them to act as a submarine; slowing down the movement speed and changing the settings so it controls more like a submarine then a plane. Most easily edited things are approach speed, cruise speed, power plant (changing this changes how fast you travel, accelerate), and pitch, roll, and yaw.

    Everything is commented within .ini files and is pretty easy to figure out just with messing around. Always backup your settings though; sometimes you may want to revert (such as when your plane flies at 1000000000000000 miles per hour).

    Note: When you change information within the program files GE folder, the effect will only show when you reopen GE.
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