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Apple Photos (OSX) uploading referenced files to iCloud?

meduk1

macrumors member
Original poster
May 30, 2008
49
15
I'm trying to increase my usage of Apple Photos by using it for both my large collection of RAW file's as well as general phone photos synced via iCloud. What I've been trying to achieve is NOT having my large collection of RAWs automatically uploaded iCloud and eating up all of my iCloud storage.

To do this I've turned off the setting for iCloud to manage my files in its library, so by default my Macs photos files are referenced. I can then selectively chose which files to consolidate in my library and therefore upload to iCloud.

I've created an Album that contains approx 7000 referenced files. I've validated that these files are indeed referenced by creating a Smart Album that looks only for referenced files and it finds all 7000. Overnight Photos has started uploading these files to iCloud filling up my space - I'm at a loss why? Any ideas?
 

Indydenny

macrumors 6502
Jan 5, 2002
426
522
Midwest
When you check the iCloud Photos box in preferences, all photos in that library will be uploaded, no matter which folder you place them in, or what kind of file they are. (I hope I'm understanding your question.)

The easiest (not sure it will accomplish what you want) is to create a second Photos Library and import your raw files there. Only one Photos Library can sync with iCloud, so your second one (the Raws) would be separate and you could sync that with Google Photos, Dropbox, Flickr or ???

I often use a second Library for a vacation or event. Then later I can export the photos that I want and add them to a Folder in my main library.

To start a new Library, just hold down the Option Key while launching Photos. You will be given an option to "CREATE NEW." Name it Photos RAWS, Photos Vacation, or whatever. From then on, just hold down the Option Key when you launch and you can choose which library to use. (Apple should make the concept of multiple libraries more obvious as it can be very useful!)
 
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meduk1

macrumors member
Original poster
May 30, 2008
49
15
Thanks, yeah I'm now leaning towards the second library approach to handle my large file collection.

I don't think this is the intended functionality, I had a call with Apple Support this morning who confirmed its a bug. From the limited reading (as most people's problems are trying to get photos into iCloud, not stop it) it appears to be functionality that worked until Catalina.

If you check out the video here it shows how it should work. Apples own setting in preferences even states that referenced files in your library won't be uploaded. https://macmost.com/using-referenced-photos-to-exclude-photos-from-icloud.html
 
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robgendreau

macrumors 68040
Jul 13, 2008
3,387
287
I seem to recall trying this and having problems back in the day (even aside from forgetting to turn on "copy into..." or to turn it off. Maybe it had to do with changing that setting on more than one instance of Photos (ie on another computer), but it's been too long. In any case, given the demands of synching, I would think the most prudent and robust approach is to use different libraries. And maybe look at PowerPhotos to help manage that.
 
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yudilks

macrumors regular
Jan 30, 2006
181
0
I have been also having the same issue.

I found the following guides to use both referenced and managed files in Photos.
  1. Macworld https://www.macworld.com/article/34...hoose-what-photos-sync-in-photos-for-mac.html
  2. Macmost https://macmost.com/using-referenced-photos-to-exclude-photos-from-icloud.html
Then I did this:
  1. Set the Photos preferences to follow Macworld (enable Referenced File)
  2. Import 5 photos with names: a.jpg; b.jpg; c.jpg; d.jpg; e.jpg
  3. Choose files to upload to iCloud Photo Library, for example, file a.jpg and b.jpg by doing Consolidation
I should expect to have 2 photos in my iCloud Photo Library which is a.jpg and b.jpg. However, what happened is that, even with the Reference File setting, Photos for Mac uploaded all the 5 photos to the iCloud Photo Library. If I delete all the 5 files from iCloud.com or iOS devices, all 5 photos are moved to the Recently Deleted album in my iOS devices.

But in Photos for Mac, only file a.jpg and b.jpg moved to the Recently Deleted folder which is expected since they are already consolidated. If I recover file a.jpg and b.jpg from the Recently Deleted folder in Photos for Mac, those 2 files also disappear from the Recently Deleted folder in my iOS devices. Only the 3 referenced photos, which are c.jpg, d.jpg, and e.jpg, left in the iOS Recently Deleted folder.

This means that file a.jpg and b.jpg are behaving as expected since they are already consolidated to the iCloud Photo Library. However, the rest of 3 files are "rouge" files that are not supposed to be uploaded to iCloud Photo Library but got uploaded nonetheless.

I can then proceed to delete the rest of the file from my iOS devices, and everything will be in order again.

The problem is now, my photo library is growing larger and larger even when I'm using Referenced files. Anyone know how to reduce this?
 
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tristan33

macrumors newbie
Nov 16, 2020
1
0
I have been also having the same issue.

I found the following guides to use both referenced and managed files in Photos.
  1. Macworld https://www.macworld.com/article/34...hoose-what-photos-sync-in-photos-for-mac.html
  2. Macmost https://macmost.com/using-referenced-photos-to-exclude-photos-from-icloud.html
Then I did this:
  1. Set the Photos preferences to follow Macworld (enable Referenced File)
  2. Import 5 photos with names: a.jpg; b.jpg; c.jpg; d.jpg; e.jpg
  3. Choose files to upload to iCloud Photo Library, for example, file a.jpg and b.jpg by doing Consolidation
I should expect to have 2 photos in my iCloud Photo Library which is a.jpg and b.jpg. However, what happened is that, even with the Reference File setting, Photos for Mac uploaded all the 5 photos to the iCloud Photo Library. If I delete all the 5 files from iCloud.com or iOS devices, all 5 photos are moved to the Recently Deleted album in my iOS devices.

But in Photos for Mac, only file a.jpg and b.jpg moved to the Recently Deleted folder which is expected since they are already consolidated. If I recover file a.jpg and b.jpg from the Recently Deleted folder in Photos for Mac, those 2 files also disappear from the Recently Deleted folder in my iOS devices. Only the 3 referenced photos, which are c.jpg, d.jpg, and e.jpg, left in the iOS Recently Deleted folder.

This means that file a.jpg and b.jpg are behaving as expected since they are already consolidated to the iCloud Photo Library. However, the rest of 3 files are "rouge" files that are not supposed to be uploaded to iCloud Photo Library but got uploaded nonetheless.

I can then proceed to delete the rest of the file from my iOS devices, and everything will be in order again.

The problem is now, my photo library is growing larger and larger even when I'm using Referenced files. Anyone know how to reduce this?
Hello,

I have exactly the same problem...
I am a French photographer (130 000 photos with 20 000 referenced photos so iCoud should have 110 000 photos bit no... there is 119 000 photos in iCloud..)
And now I am with Big Sur 11.0.1 and the Referenced files goes to iCloud little by little.... (around 50% of them)..

I called the support team in march when I was with Catalina and they said that the ingeniors know the problem and maybe there will be a fix in next update but no...
And with Big Sur I thought it would be fixed... but still not... si I am with the support again today and I still hope they will help... but no sure at all...

Is anyone fix this problem??

Thank you Tristan
 
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