You'll need to download the abrViewer for this tutorial. You can find that HERE. I downloaded the newest version, as shown below:
What this program basically does is convert .abr files into PNG files.
The nice thing about this program is that you can save this file anywhere--even a portable drive--and it will still work!
Once downloaded, I added it to my portable drive. All I had to do is click the program (highlighted in blue) in order to get it to run.
In the upper left hand side, it says "File". Click this button.
It will ask you to open your file. Select the file with .abr extension.
Once you do that, it will process the .abr file.
Your files will show up in the upper part of your program.
Again, in the upper left hand corner, you'll need "Export" to save your files. Be sure to select "Thumbnails" when doing so.
It will then ask for a location to send them to. Since I was unsure how this would go, I stored them where I could easily find them. Click OK when ready.
As you can tell, they are all now converted to PNG images.
Go to your start button and locate "Computer". When you click it, this box will pop up:
Under "Libraries", you'll see "Documents". This is the location you want so click there. This screen pops up:
In this screen, you'll find "Paint.Net User Files" as a folder. Click this folder.
Now this screen pops up:
Now my folder looks like this:
NOTE: When using the "Browse For Folder" option that I used to place my brushes where I could find them above, just locate the "Custom Brushes" folder in your Paint.Net User Files under your Documents for simpler installation.
Also, if you have more than one program running, it makes it difficult on other programs. My browser kept freezing to the point that I finally had to close down my computer and restart. My computer DOES need upgrading but I'm still letting everyone know in case it happens to them. I'd recommend you download your .abr files, close down all programs, and then convert before trying your other programs again.