4 Questions about transferring from iPhoto to Photos

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by gbv750, May 27, 2015.

  1. gbv750 macrumors newbie

    Nov 8, 2013
    I haven't made the transition to Photos on my Macbook, because I wanted to ask a few questions that I haven't seen answered elsewhere.

    1. I have thousands of photos and hundreds of categories that organizes them. These categories are mainly based on who they are photos of. When they were taken is irrelevant to me.

    Will photos maintain my current iPhoto categories after the transfer?

    2. Due to my large number of photos, I divided them into three smaller iPhoto album sets so I'm not waiting for the app to upload everything at once.

    Will I have trouble transferring all three of my iPhoto sets to Photos?

    3. What happens to the photos themselves when they are transferred? Will I have two copies of each photo in each app? If I like Photos, is there a way to smoothly delete iPhoto and all the data stored inside of it?

    4. My understanding is that the default setting in Photos is to convert imported photos to poorer resolution. Is there a way to prevent this so all imported photos have their original resolution?
  2. keysofanxiety macrumors G3


    Nov 23, 2011
    When you open Photos there's an option to import/migrate your iPhoto library. It'll migrate everything as it was. It's a fairly streamlined process and I haven't encountered anybody mentioning any problems with this.

    I honestly don't know about Photos converting imported photos to poorer resolution so I can't comment on that.
  3. andyp350 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 14, 2011
    1 - You haven't explained what your 'categories' are so its hard to answer. Do you mean iPhoto events? If so then they'll all be imported over and can be found in the albums section of Photos.

    2 - Again you've not made it very clear what you mean here, do you mean you have three separate iPhoto libraries? If so I'm not sure how you'd go about importing them as I've only ever had one library. If you just mean albums/smart albums, they will import over.

    3 - The photos are hard linked to both libraries which basically means each photo is stored on your computer once and both iPhoto and Photos will access it. This means you can literally just delete your iPhoto library if you are happy with Photos. So yes it's very smooth.

    4 - I'm not aware this is a default setting, Photos can import file resolution and RAW files and all mine have been imported at full resolution.

    Hope this helps
  4. illitrate23 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 11, 2004
    1- have you set up the categories by using Albums? If so, i believe they're recreated in Photos

    2- just like in iPhoto, if you hold down the option key when you launch Photos, it will ask you which library you wish to open. I believe you can convert each of your iPhotos libraries and thereafter you'll be able to choose which one you open each time.

    3- As described above, it doesn't duplicate the files. At least, not until you make any edits. After you've imported the Library to Photos, if you make an edit in either Photos or in iPhoto, at that point it'll create a modified copy specific to the app you made the edit in. But the original version of the file will remain shared by both.

    4- as mentioned, it doesn't actually re-import the original photos from iPhotos library, it just links to them. So there should be no degradation, it isn't make any changes to the original file.
    Or might be thinking about the way iOS screenshots are transferred via the iCloud Photo Library. If you import them directly from your device you get full resolution. But if you share them via the iCloud library, apparently it's an optimised version of the screenshot that is shared. Only happens with screenshots, from what i've read, haven't noticed it myself (since so far all the screenshots i've taken on iOS i have then been shrinking in size on my mac prior to upload to the web anyway).
  5. gbv750 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 8, 2013
    Thanks everyone, this helps. It's been a long time since I needed to use iPhoto terminology, so categories = events, and album sets = library.
  6. DeafRaiders macrumors regular

    Sep 26, 2012
    Caotbridge (outside Glasgow, UK)
    I have a question:

    1. I have my iPhoto library which is 53.8gb and my photos library is 37.42 GB. I want to use one library which is Photos but first i want to make sure the iPhotos have been copied over to Photos library before deleting it.

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5 May 27, 2015