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macuser312

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 29, 2011
12
4
Hey everyone. Have been having a very annoying persistent problem every time I want to import photos from my Canon's SD card to my Mac. I have used two different card readers now - I have a 1TB card and every import will always stop midway through unless I delete a certain file at least a dozen+ times. Only once I delete certain files it deems can't be read or written will the entire transfer happen in full.
It has been severely hampering productivity as sometimes it can take hours to import a batch of photos. Please help

Screenshot 2023-08-13 at 4.15.22 PM.png
 

r.harris1

macrumors 68020
Feb 20, 2012
2,202
12,659
Denver, Colorado, USA
If you've tried different card readers, have you tried a different cable? Are you using a particular application like Lightroom or Photos or what-have-you, or is it that you're trying to drag/drop images from the card to the Mac?
 
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macuser312

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 29, 2011
12
4
Huh. Interesting. So for the Photos app, it just hangs and doesn't import at all, so I don't even try to import there directly anymore.
This is just drag and dropping in the finder from the card to my desktop. And I have it set to RAW/JPEG so there is 2 files for each photo. Usually about ~8MB for the JPG and 40MB for the RAW.
 

mollyc

macrumors 604
Aug 18, 2016
7,895
48,437
Huh. Interesting. So for the Photos app, it just hangs and doesn't import at all, so I don't even try to import there directly anymore.
This is just drag and dropping in the finder from the card to my desktop. And I have it set to RAW/JPEG so there is 2 files for each photo. Usually about ~8MB for the JPG and 40MB for the RAW.
Do you ever reformat the card?
 

macuser312

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 29, 2011
12
4
Do you ever reformat the card?
Usually I'll delete and then empty the trash on the Mac. Should I be reformatting the card in-camera? Or with disk utility on the Mac? Should i be doing this after every shoot and import?
 

mollyc

macrumors 604
Aug 18, 2016
7,895
48,437
Usually I'll delete and then empty the trash on the Mac. Should I be reformatting the card in-camera? Or with disk utility on the Mac? Should i be doing this after every shoot and import?
Yes, you should reformat only in camera and ideally after every shoot, but if you are away, then I'd wait till you are sure they are all backed up safely.
 

AlaskaMoose

macrumors 68040
Apr 26, 2008
3,527
13,388
Alaska
Usually I'll delete and then empty the trash on the Mac. Should I be reformatting the card in-camera? Or with disk utility on the Mac? Should i be doing this after every shoot and import?
Mollyc had the answer for you. Problems like the one you are having are caused when one does not format the car in-camera. First see if you can retrieve the photos by other means from the card, then eject them from your computer, and format them in your camera. While you can drag the images in your cards and then empty the trashcan using your computer, you should-immediately after format the cards in-camera. Otherwise you may corrupt the cards.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,613
12,739
OP:

Here's something to try.
No promises.
Just try it.

1. Connect the card reader to the Mac.
2. Put the SD card into it
3. If Photos (or any other app) opens, CLOSE IT
4. You just want to see the SD card icon on the desktop
5. Now, in the finder, make a NEW folder (type Command-SHIFT-N)
6. Give it a name (or just leave it as untitled)
7. Next, open the icon for the SD card
8. You will need to navigate to the folder the pics are actually in
9. Now select a pic (just one at first), and "drag and drop it" into the new folder
10. Does the pic "go into it"?
11. If so, try a few more. You can "shift-click" or "command-click" to select more than one, then drag them in all at once.

When this is done, eject the SD card.
Open your photo app (the one you use to edit).
Can you now import these pics from the folder on the desktop into your photo app?

This is the way I've been "bringing over" pics from my cameras from "digital day one".
I've created my own "library" (using a standard folder/file hierarchy), that ALL my photo apps can access.

I don't want to be "a prisoner" to an app like Photos (or iPhoto before it) that "buries" my originals deep into a cryptic "library" that I can't access in any meaningful way...
 
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OldMacs4Me

macrumors 68020
May 4, 2018
2,226
28,888
Wild Rose And Wind Belt
I know it's really tempting to cull camera images from your computer, but far better to import everything in the manner @Fishrrman suggested. Keep in mind all camera software is Windozed based, and even Windoze computers will sometimes corrupt camera cards.

After that; Confirm images are not corrupted. Back-up. Then back up again to a secondary location. Then reformat the card in camera.

After all that then go back to the originals on your computer and cull away. Once you are happy then replace your back-ups with the trimmed down version.

NOTE: I actually lock my SD card when connecting it to a computer, just to prevent accidents.
 

Slartibart

macrumors 68030
Aug 19, 2020
2,926
2,653
in mind all camera software is Windozed based, and even Windoze computers will sometimes corrupt camera cards.
sorry for going off topic - you are probably referring to the ExFAT-filesystem which is commonly used on SD-cards by camera manufactures (and which was introduced by Microsoft with Windows CE 6). Otherwise all camera software is certainly not Windows-based. 😄
 

OldMacs4Me

macrumors 68020
May 4, 2018
2,226
28,888
Wild Rose And Wind Belt
sorry for going off topic - you are probably referring to the ExFAT-filesystem which is commonly used on SD-cards by camera manufactures (and which was introduced by Microsoft with Windows CE 6). Otherwise all camera software is certainly not Windows-based. 😄
You're right of course. Regardless manipulating SD cards from any computer risks corrupting the card. This has been proven by several members here, including yours truly.
 

Slartibart

macrumors 68030
Aug 19, 2020
2,926
2,653
@OP: one option to possibly solve your current problem is to open a terminal (Applications -> Utilities) window on your Mac and and type dot_clean and a single space. Then drag the SD card icon onto the terminal window, and the command will automatically extended with the file path to your card. Press Enter.
The hidden ‘._’ files on the SD card which often cause the error, should be merged with their host files, and you should be able to copy the files from the SD without problems.

Depending how you mount the card you have to apply the command to the DCIM folder on the card.

As others have already suggested, after getting your photos of the card it’s good procedure to format it in camera from here on.
 

macuser312

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 29, 2011
12
4
OP:

Here's something to try.
No promises.
Just try it.

1. Connect the card reader to the Mac.
2. Put the SD card into it
3. If Photos (or any other app) opens, CLOSE IT
4. You just want to see the SD card icon on the desktop
5. Now, in the finder, make a NEW folder (type Command-SHIFT-N)
6. Give it a name (or just leave it as untitled)
7. Next, open the icon for the SD card
8. You will need to navigate to the folder the pics are actually in
9. Now select a pic (just one at first), and "drag and drop it" into the new folder
10. Does the pic "go into it"?
11. If so, try a few more. You can "shift-click" or "command-click" to select more than one, then drag them in all at once.

When this is done, eject the SD card.
Open your photo app (the one you use to edit).
Can you now import these pics from the folder on the desktop into your photo app?

This is the way I've been "bringing over" pics from my cameras from "digital day one".
I've created my own "library" (using a standard folder/file hierarchy), that ALL my photo apps can access.

I don't want to be "a prisoner" to an app like Photos (or iPhoto before it) that "buries" my originals deep into a cryptic "library" that I can't access in any meaningful way...
So this has been the ONLY way to get pictures off of the SD card - drag and dropping the DCIM folder directly from the card into my photos app for import does not work at all, but once I copy the entire contents (usually 50-100GB) to the desktop, I can then import it no problem... but the problem arises like in the original post that it will get to a certain percentage (maybe 20% originally) fail until I delete a certain file, then I will have to begin the entire re-import again. This will happen 1-2 dozen times, thus crippiling my productivity. I wish I wasn't so bound by the photos app - but I've got about 100k pictures in there unfortunately. So the ONLY way I can get the contents off from what I've come across is the app "Carbon Copy Cloner" - where I'll attempt to duplicate the DCIM folder to my desktop. Although it takes a while (not sure why, am using a latest generation iMac) it shows the import/copy graph dropping in and out periodically. Also notice the discrepancy of files copied vs evaluated (about 3-5 at these snapshots) which I assume are files that are corrupted? Thanks for the advice everybody. I'll only format the card on-camera form now on. Hopefully it will make importing faster into MacOS though... I don't know why import is always a snail's pace
Screenshot 2023-08-15 at 11.46.30 AM.png

4 few minutes later:
Screenshot 2023-08-15 at 11.51.04 AM.png
 

Slartibart

macrumors 68030
Aug 19, 2020
2,926
2,653
the discrepany comes from the ._-files used for storing OS meta data. This can cause problems. Formatting of the SD-card in the camera as suggested will help to avoid this source for trouble in the future (if you delete photos via the trash the corresponding ._-files remain on the card).
You can delete the these ._-files easily from the terminal; or use dot_clean to consolidate; one other option is to let the Finder show all hidden files and then delete them - but that implies selecting quite a number of files manually and delete them.
While there is an option to deactivate the writing of these files for network drives (e.g. via Onyx or Tinkertool), there is AFAIK no way to prevent this for USB-drives.
 

macuser312

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 29, 2011
12
4
the discrepany comes from the ._-files used for storing OS meta data. This can cause problems. Formatting of the SD-card in the camera as suggested will help to avoid this source for trouble in the future (if you delete photos via the trash the corresponding ._-files remain on the card).
You can delete the these ._-files easily from the terminal; or use dot_clean to consolidate; one other option is to let the Finder show all hidden files and then delete them - but that implies selecting quite a number of files manually and delete them.
While there is an option to deactivate the writing of these files for network drives (e.g. via Onyx or Tinkertool), there is AFAIK no way to prevent this for USB-drives.
Interesting. I'll stick to in-camera formatting from now on. Thanks everyone. This is the result I get from CCC duplicating the folder to my internal hard drive. Does ~76GB usually take half an hour+ to copy?

Screenshot 2023-08-15 at 12.30.56 PM.png
Screenshot 2023-08-15 at 7.23.43 PM.png
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,613
12,739
OP:

The warning you are seeing (as posted in reply 19 above) suggests (at least to me) that it's time for a new SD card...
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,613
12,739
I looked back over the thread and couldn't find this info, but...

What brand of card is it?
Who did you buy it from?

Could it be defective?
Could it possibly be a "counterfeit" card?
(I've read reports of such counterfeits being sold under the Sandisk name, could be others).

Just some thoughts.

Then again, it may be "fixable" with reformatting, etc.
 
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