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Thread: Using iPhoto

  1. #1
    Using iPhoto

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    Using iPhoto
    When I started computing I was a Windows user and I stored my photos in year directories with sub directories for various events throughout the year.

    I have too many photos to change my system.

    I was always able to continue with this system when I switched to iMac using Canon Software to view my photos.

    My photos are all on an external Hard Drive and I would rather keep it that way and not transfer to the iMac hard drive.

    Having recently replaced my iMac I am now on Mojave and the Canon software is no longer compatible.

    Having contacted Canon they have very helpfully told me I would have to upgrade my camera to get software compatible with Mojave which I don't want to do.

    I would like to use iPhoto which seems the obvious thing to do but can't see how I can view my directories and continue with the same system. It appears that I would have to import all of my photos and somehow create new albums?

    Help would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Using iPhoto
    MacInWin's Avatar
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    First, iPhoto no longer exists in your Mojave system. It's been replaced with Photos. That's a bit pedantic, I know, but it's important because the two don't operate the same way.

    When you import pictures to Photos you have two options: import the actual image files into Photos or leave the images where they are an import just a reference to them so you can manipulate them in Photos. If you use the second approach, leaving the files where they are, then if you move one of them, Photos will be unaware of the move and will report an error. The typical trap for that error is that if the photos are on an external drive and the drive gets disconnected or unmounted from the operating system, Photos won't be able to find the images at all. If you use the first method, the files are copied into a separate database inside Photos, so the issue of losing the images isn't there, but you are now duplicating the images inside Photos, taking up more disk space. Of course, once they are in Photos you *could* delete the originals to get the space back, but a lot of folks don't do that because they don't trust Photos. If the Photos database is stored on an external drive and if the drive is disconnected, then Photos will complain that the entire database is gone and create a new, empty one in the default location on the internal drive. That action is easy to recover from by just changing the preferences of Photos to point to the database location once the drive is attached again.

    OK, with all that, what to do? Well, you could import the images into Photos one directory/subdirectory at a time. I think that you can import each directory/subdirectory into a separate album, thereby preserving your current structure. I am not a Photos wizard, so maybe someone else will come along to clarify that, but I am pretty sure it would work.

    You could always give it a try, use either method to import them and see if the structure can be preserved for you. I'm not sure about how the hierarchy of folder/subfolders will work in Photos (in other words, can an album be included in another album?) but you could experiment with a couple of your folders at low risk. if it doesn't work, you just erase and reset the process. Your originals will be right where they are now.
    Jake

  3. #3
    Using iPhoto
    ferrarr's Avatar
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    If you have your picture files on an external drive, you can keep setting them up that way, just use Image Capture (IC) to do it. Each time you use IC, you can create new folders for each import, on the external drive.

    See if any of this info helps, Transfer images in Image Capture on Mac - Apple Support
    -- Bob --
    Please backup. Everything has a life cycle, unexpected and warning free. Nothing will last as long as you want it to.

  4. #4
    Using iPhoto
    Ratsima's Avatar
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    I also have all of my photos on an external drive with folders by year and subfolders by location or event or whatever. When you import photographs into Photos, you have an option to "Keep Folder Organization". I'm not sure what the correct terminology is, but this results in the creation of Albums (?) and sub-Albums (Folders?) within Photos that duplicate the original file structure.

    When I tried this I had about 47K photos to import. The import took well over a week, partly because Photos kept crashing and had too be restarted. I assume that my folder structure and volume of photos was too much for Photos to handle. I eventually abandoned Photos. Didn't much like it.

  5. #5
    Using iPhoto

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    Quote Originally Posted by MacInWin View Post
    First, iPhoto no longer exists in your Mojave system. It's been replaced with Photos. That's a bit pedantic, I know, but it's important because the two don't operate the same way.

    When you import pictures to Photos you have two options: import the actual image files into Photos or leave the images where they are an import just a reference to them so you can manipulate them in Photos. If you use the second approach, leaving the files where they are, then if you move one of them, Photos will be unaware of the move and will report an error. The typical trap for that error is that if the photos are on an external drive and the drive gets disconnected or unmounted from the operating system, Photos won't be able to find the images at all. If you use the first method, the files are copied into a separate database inside Photos, so the issue of losing the images isn't there, but you are now duplicating the images inside Photos, taking up more disk space. Of course, once they are in Photos you *could* delete the originals to get the space back, but a lot of folks don't do that because they don't trust Photos. If the Photos database is stored on an external drive and if the drive is disconnected, then Photos will complain that the entire database is gone and create a new, empty one in the default location on the internal drive. That action is easy to recover from by just changing the preferences of Photos to point to the database location once the drive is attached again.

    OK, with all that, what to do? Well, you could import the images into Photos one directory/subdirectory at a time. I think that you can import each directory/subdirectory into a separate album, thereby preserving your current structure. I am not a Photos wizard, so maybe someone else will come along to clarify that, but I am pretty sure it would work.

    You could always give it a try, use either method to import them and see if the structure can be preserved for you. I'm not sure about how the hierarchy of folder/subfolders will work in Photos (in other words, can an album be included in another album?) but you could experiment with a couple of your folders at low risk. if it doesn't work, you just erase and reset the process. Your originals will be right where they are now.
    Thank you very much for your detailed explanation Jake.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Ratsima View Post
    I also have all of my photos on an external drive with folders by year and subfolders by location or event or whatever. When you import photographs into Photos, you have an option to "Keep Folder Organization". I'm not sure what the correct terminology is, but this results in the creation of Albums (?) and sub-Albums (Folders?) within Photos that duplicate the original file structure.

    When I tried this I had about 47K photos to import. The import took well over a week, partly because Photos kept crashing and had too be restarted. I assume that my folder structure and volume of photos was too much for Photos to handle. I eventually abandoned Photos. Didn't much like it.
    Can I ask what you use?

  6. #6
    Using iPhoto
    Ratsima's Avatar
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    I use Dropbox Camera Uploads to transfer photos from my iPhone and iPad my iMac. I use Image Capture to transfer photos from my GoPro.

    Dropbox puts all the photos in a single folder (Camera Uploads). I preview the photos there, delete the duds and then copy the ones I want to save into the appropriate directories on my external drive.

    I use Graphic Converter to view and edit photos.

  7. #7
    Using iPhoto

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ratsima View Post
    I use Dropbox Camera Uploads to transfer photos from my iPhone and iPad my iMac. I use Image Capture to transfer photos from my GoPro.

    Dropbox puts all the photos in a single folder (Camera Uploads). I preview the photos there, delete the duds and then copy the ones I want to save into the appropriate directories on my external drive.

    I use Graphic Converter to view and edit photos.
    That sounds good. Thank you very much for the info.

  8. #8
    Using iPhoto
    Ratsima's Avatar
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    There are lots of possible workflows out there. Just take your time and find one that works for you.

    I had high hopes for Photos (I even sprung for the 200GB iCloud storage plan), but it just didn't work for me. (I'm old and set in my ways.)

  9. #9
    Using iPhoto

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ratsima View Post
    There are lots of possible workflows out there. Just take your time and find one that works for you.

    I had high hopes for Photos (I even sprung for the 200GB iCloud storage plan), but it just didn't work for me. (I'm old and set in my ways.)
    I think this will work for me. I only need to make an occasional exposure adjustment and crop - just basic stuff. I don't like the sound of Photos at all for my system. Why they don't set it up to File-Open-locate an image is a mystery to me.

  10. #10
    Using iPhoto

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ratsima View Post
    There are lots of possible workflows out there. Just take your time and find one that works for you.

    I had high hopes for Photos (I even sprung for the 200GB iCloud storage plan), but it just didn't work for me. (I'm old and set in my ways.)

    Do you use the Free or Paid for version?

  11. #11
    Using iPhoto
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkWebb View Post
    Do you use the Free or Paid for version?
    I'm not sure what you're asking here.

  12. #12
    Using iPhoto
    Slydude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkWebb View Post
    I think this will work for me. I only need to make an occasional exposure adjustment and crop - just basic stuff. I don't like the sound of Photos at all for my system. Why they don't set it up to File-Open-locate an image is a mystery to me.
    Not sure what you mean here. Are you talking about the absence of an Open command in the File menu?
    Last edited by Slydude; 11-17-2019 at 10:31 AM.
    “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”
    Kevin Durant

  13. #13
    Using iPhoto
    MacInWin's Avatar
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    Why they don't set it up to File-Open-locate an image is a mystery to me.
    I'm also confused by that. What does that mean? You open Photos, find the image and click to open it for editing. Pretty straightforward access to the tools you need to edit an image.
    Jake

  14. #14
    Using iPhoto
    chscag's Avatar
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    Photos or iPhoto: You either like them or hate them. Over the years we have seen numerous complaints about the way Apple handles photos. Some folks would rather do all the sorting and folder creation themselves whereas others just let Apple do it for them.

    The same complaints can be heard about iTunes and the way it handles music.

  15. #15
    Using iPhoto

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    It seems to me from the above that in Photos the images have to be imported from the external drive in order to open them in Photos. It would be preferable for me if I could just select the files I want to work on from my external drive - i.e. File - Open - Select image from external drive to open.

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