View Full Version : Best way to manage photos

07-21-2009, 12:24 PM
I recently switched to Mac and have begun using iPhoto. I use an external HDD connected to my AE, but store the photos on my local HDD.

I backup my photos on my external HDD.

So, should I use iPhoto to import the photos from my digital camera? Followed by copying the folders from iPhoto to the external HDD.
Or, should I copy the photos over to the external HDD first, and then import them to iPhoto?

Which way is best? I know that it is preferred not to mess with the iPhoto folder.

07-21-2009, 06:44 PM
Personally I import all photos to iphoto.

You can then copy the iphoto library file to your external hdd to back it up.

Or, right click on a photo, show original, then copy the folder containing all photos to your HDD .

Or, export all your photos to your HDD, run a script which puts them into a folder that is labelled as the event that they were in. Do a search on me - o detailed a guide on how to do this.

I also set iphoto to use photoshop cs4 to edit pics.

07-22-2009, 10:07 AM
As far as backing up, why not simply use Time Machine, Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper to back up your entire drive, photos and all tio your external. That way,you have insurance that you won't lose anything. I second the notion to keep everything in iPhoto. It does an amazing job or organizing and keeping things so that you can find what you want easily.

07-23-2009, 03:19 AM
Thanks for the advice.

I prefer to have the files on the eHDD as well since there are people in the family that wish to access them and store them on their machines (non-Macs).

07-23-2009, 10:10 AM
Thanks for the advice.

I prefer to have the files on the eHDD as well since there are people in the family that wish to access them and store them on their machines (non-Macs).

Well,if you want others on PC's to access them, you should import directly to the external, organize them however you want (for the PC users) and then import into iPhoto. Copying your internal iPhoto library to the external will probably render them useless to the PC users. The file system is not made for that.

07-23-2009, 11:14 AM
This is what I followed to export all photos into folders labelled the same as the events that they are organized into [in iPhoto].

Great for keeping the same file structure to transfer over to a PC:-

macosxhints.com - Export iPhoto events into appropriate directory structure (http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20081108132735425)

07-25-2009, 01:12 AM
iPhoto is fine but it is unable to handle RAW files.

07-25-2009, 08:25 AM
iPhoto does handle RAW files.

RAW support is built into OS X, not the individual Apple applications.

However, almost every camera has it's own RAW format and OS X does not support every RAW type out there.

For a list of cameras supported by OS X check here (http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1475).

Not every camera supported is on the list either. For example, my Canon XSi is not on the list, but it uses the same format as the XS which is on the list.

Most SLR's are supported, many of the cheaper point and shoot camera RAW formats are not. Ex. Panasonic Lumix.

07-25-2009, 10:14 PM
Well, If you prefer an album with your images so you can do slide shows and minimal and easy quick little edits to your photos, Go right ahead. But if you prefer to organized them photos in Folders Then Import the images through "Image Capture" That is what i use. I mean their are allot of personal preferences to how and what you want to do, but thats just one suggestion, and the easiest. Another is if you are willing or have it, U can use Aperture, another Apple program which is great for that to.

09-04-2009, 01:42 PM
Hey I am on a similar "quest" however I have been accustomed to Mac for years now and have been using iPhoto, and think I have a better all around solution.

Image Capture would be best if all you are doing is importing and then saving images to your own file system on your computer or external HD, but then you can't take advantage of all of the management features and syncing and all that that comes with a management program.

iPhoto is great in it's own world and in "MacLand" but becomes quite the pain in the ***** when you go to look for photos from outside of any Apple software program (i.e. Photoshop). This is because iPhoto saves the photos behind the scenes by when the photos were imported; NOT by the albums or events you may set up. I'm also not 100% about iPhoto importing all RAW formats and info (think it does though).

Adobe's Photoshop Lightroom will allow for most DSLR imports and will keep the RAW data. It manages them in the folders you want. And plays well with all the Adobe suite (Adobe Bridge would also work for this but Lightroom is the "BigBrother" program I believe). The only real downfall here is it doesn't have all the great extras that come with iPhoto (book & calander creation, MobileMe, facebook, and flickr exporting/syncing, AppleTV, iPod, and iPhone album syncing, access to files natively in iDVD, iWeb, Mail, ect.)

The real solution for my needs (I believe) comes with Apple's Aperture. It is like iPhoto in that it can do all the little extras with all the Mac products, services, and software, and will sync to the outside accounts of facebook, flickr, ect. But it is better than iPhoto because you can create and manage your own folders for saving and file hierarchy (Like Lightroom). It will sync your existing iPhoto Library (either a physical transfer or just visual access) and will also allow management and viewing of files you create on your HD or external. This way you can have your cake and eat it too. It lets you choose on how you let it save; be it similar to iPhoto (by capture date) or in organized folders you create. Aperture keeps all of you RAW data for most DSLRs. This program can work in place of or in addition to iPhoto.

Aperture and Photoshop both have photo editing features built-in.

If you don't use the iLife/iWork suites on a Mac; or at least a couple of them, or MobileMe, then you may not have that large of an advantage for using Aperture over Lightroom (some that have used them both may argue differently based on more detailed features/uses). But if you are using the iLife Apple stuff then Aperture is really the best option in my opinion.