Managing linked and embedded images

The Links palette lets you identify, select, monitor, and update, and replace images that are linked to external files, or images that are embedded in the Illustrator file. In addition, you can determine if an image’s link to an external file is broken or missing, get information about linked or embedded image characteristics, and open a linked image’s original file and application to edit the image.

If you are color-managing artwork in a document, embedded EPS images are part of the document and therefore color-managed when sent to a printing device. In contrast, linked images are not color-managed, even if color management is turned on for the rest of the document.

Important:

Occasionally you may encounter a warning when printing an Illustrator document containing embedded EPS images. If the application cannot find the original EPS image, you will be prompted to extract the EPS image. Select the Extract option in the dialog box; the image will be extracted into the same directory as the current document. Although the embedded file does not preview in the document, the file will now print correctly.

Specifying how to update links

You can set a preference to specify how to update linked images when the original files change.

To specify how to update links:

  1. Choose Edit > Preferences > Files & Clipboard (Windows and Mac OS 9) or Illustrator >Preferences > Files & Clipboard (Mac OS X).
  2. Choose an update method from the Update Links pop-up menu:
  3. Automatically to have Illustrator update linked images automatically when the original files are modified.
  4. Manually to leave linked images unchanged when the original files are modified. You can use the Links palette to identify linked images whose originals have been modified and to update these images.
  5. Ask When Modified to display a dialog box when the original files are modified. In the dialog box, click Yes to update the linked image or click No to leave it unchanged.

Specifying how proxies display

By default, Illustrator displays proxies in full resolution, with vectors in full color. However, if you want to increase performance when you’re working with many linked files, you can turn off this option in the Preferences dialog box.

To turn off high resolution proxy display:

  1. Choose Edit > Preferences > Files & Clipboard (Windows and Mac OS 9) or Illustrator >Preferences > Files & Clipboard (Mac OS X).
  2. Select Use Low Resolution Proxy for Linked EPS.

Using the Links palette

All linked or embedded images in the file are listed in the Links palette. Linked images whose originals have been modified since the image was placed (and which have not been updated) are identified with an exclamation point icon; linked images whose original files are missing are identified with a stop sign icon .You can use the Links palette to quickly convert linked images into embedded images, using the Embed Image command.

You can use the Links palette to quickly convert linked images into embedded images, using the Embed Image command.

To display the Links palette:

Choose Window > Links. Each linked or embedded image is identified by name and by a thumbnail display.

To select one or more links:

Choose from the following options:

  • Click a link to select it.
  • Shift-click to select a continuous range of links.
  • Ctrl-click (Windows) or Command-click (Mac OS) to select a non continuous range of links.
  • Ctrl+Alt (Windows) or Command+Option (Mac OS) and then click in the palette window to select a link by typing its name.

To display link information:

Do one of the following:

  • Double-click a link to bring up the Link Information dialog box.
  • Select a link, and choose Information from the Links palette menu.

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