Explore Photos library backup without messing with iCloud

Discussion in 'macOS' started by luke23, Feb 28, 2016.

  1. luke23 macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2006

    I accidentally deleted a set of pictures from an album in my Photos library.

    I use Time Machine and I would like to go back to previous library version to get them back.

    My concern is wether this will interfere with the actual pics in iCloud if I open the old library with Photos. Will my current library be replaced?

    Thank you very much in advanced.


    PD: I use the latest versions of OS X and Photos.
  2. simon lefisch, Feb 28, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2016

    simon lefisch macrumors 6502a

    simon lefisch

    Sep 29, 2014
    I may have an easier solution for you.....

    -Connect your TM drive to your Mac and open Photos while holding the Option key. This will open a window asking to select or create a library.

    -Choose 'select library file' and navigate thru your TM drive and select your backed up library file. This should open the library file that includes the pics your accidentally deleted.

    -Locate/select the pics you deleted, and from the File tab select 'export as originals'. Save the pics to your desktop or any other location on your Mac.

    -Close Photos, then re-open holding the Option button like you did previously. Choose 'select library file' and navigate to your current Library located on your Mac.

    -Now import the photos you previously saved. They should now be imported into your currently library.

    This will be a better option. Instead of having iCloud re-upload your entire library (which could take some time depending on the size of your library), it's only uploading the pics that were deleted.

    Edit: one more thing, make sure you still have the proper Photos Library file selected as the system file in Photos preferences.
  3. luke23 thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Thanks for your help and sorry for the late reply!

    I tried to select a library file from my TM navigating through the drive but whenever I try to open it Photos shows a message saying it cannot open it becasue Photos could not repair permissions.

    What can I do?
  4. simon lefisch macrumors 6502a

    simon lefisch

    Sep 29, 2014
    It might be due to a permissions thing on the TM drive. Prob can't open from that drive.

    Copy the library onto your Mac, some place different than your current library (Desktop maybe), then try to open that library using the method I posted before. Make sure you DO NOT select that library as your master file as then iCloud will try to upload all those files.

    Once opened, export the photos you need, then open your master library file and import the photos. If that works, delete the Photos library that's on your Desktop (or where ever you placed it).
  5. luke23 thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Unfortunately the problem persists. I tried what you said but still Photos tells me there is a problem with the permissions. Any other ideas?

    Thank you very very much!
  6. crashoverride77 macrumors 65816

    Jan 27, 2014
    Did you also delete them from the recently deleted album because you can restore from there
  7. luke23 thread starter macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Yes :-(
  8. crashoverride77, Apr 7, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2016

    crashoverride77 macrumors 65816

    Jan 27, 2014
    Not sure than how timeMachine handles that restore in regards to your photos.

    If you are worried about it going wrong why dont you get the pictures manually. Go to your timeMachine folder (Backups.backupdb) and go to a recent backup that includes the pictures you deleted. Than just copy and paste them manually back into the photos app again and they will upload as usual to iCloud and you are back where you left off.
    This way your local library or iCloud will not get messed up by timeMachine doing something unexpected.

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