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What is the Masters folder?

Editing a photo within a photo document causes the program to save another file alongside the JPEG, in a folder called 'masters' which is the master .xar file containing all the edits and the original untouched JPEG image.

When opening a JPEG photo, Xara Designer Pro checks to see if there is a corresponding master file and opens that instead of the JPEG.  There are a number of advantages to this approach.

  • Simplicity: You can just open a JPEG, edit it, and click Save to get an edited JPEG saved back in its place.
  • The original master 'negative' JPEG is retained and can be recovered or restored at any time.
  • Lossless editing cycle. You can open and save a JPEG any number of times, but instead of going through a lossy un-compress / re-compress cycle (which would badly distort the image after a few cycles), the program keeps working on the master file containing the untouched original JPEG image.
  • You can open an edited JPEG file, and remove or undo the edits you've performed on the image. This means you can do 'magic' like opening a cropped JPEG and undo the crop and recover the missing parts of the image.  Or undo or remove any edit, including any enhance operation, object erase using the clone tool etc.
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  1. Robert Turner

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