How to Make a Thumbnail of a Document

Discover how to make a thumbnail of a document so you can make it easier for visitors to your Web site to choose what to download. A thumbnail of a document can be more useful than a regular icon because users can see some of the text on the page, and they can tell exactly which file they're choosing. Let's take a look at a simple way to take a document and turn it into a thumbnail image:

Create The Thumbnail: Thumbnails are mini versions of picture files that act as shortcuts for the files. In order to make a thumbnail of a document, you must convert the file to a picture file. Documents are usually text files, such as Word documents, PDF files or HTML files. Picture files are usually saved in different formats like JPEG files.

Open your document, and maximize its window. Then press the Print Screen key. This key takes a digital snapshot of whatever is on the screen at the time you press it. You should have just taken a digital picture of your document. Now open photo editing software. It can be something as simple as Microsoft Paint. Now go to the toolbar, and select Edit and Paste. The image of the screen should paste into the program. You can edit the image down to whatever size you think is appropriate and then save the file as a JPEG.

Turn The Image Into A Hyperlink: Once you have created the thumbnail photo, you can now use this image as a link to the real document on a Web site using HTML tags to hyperlink it. The code would look like this: <a href ="link_to_document"><img src="thumbnail_document_image"></a>

The final result would display the thumbnail image of your document. Then, when a user mouses over the image, it will become active, and when she clicks on the link, the document will open in the browser, or she can choose to download it to her hard drive.

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