Up until now, editing, much less viewing RAW image formats were impossible in Windows Live Photo Gallery or Windows Explore. That however, has changed recently. Microsoft, who has been increasing the functionality of it’s Live applications, has of now added support for RAW images in Windows Explorer as well as Windows Live Photo Gallery.
Thanks to the new downloadable Camera Codec Pack, users of Windows Live Gallery can view and edit RAW photos. For the average photographer, this might not be big news, but for those professionals who use Windows machines, the inclusion of RAW support is a welcome as it makes managing and viewing photos on the fly an ease without the need to open Photoshop, Lightroom or some other program to do so.
The codec pack supports camera formats from Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Sony and many others. Unfortunately, you will need either Windows Vista or 7 to utilize the codec pack. The file size is 4 or 8 MB depending on if your system is 32bit or 64bit. The codec pack can be downloaded here. You can read more about the release at the official Microsoft Windows Live Blog.