iPhoto - Best way to organise and backup photos??

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by DarrenUK, Dec 29, 2012.

  1. DarrenUK macrumors regular


    Oct 23, 2012
    Southampton, UK
    I am new to mac and have been used to using windows PC in the past. On my windows I would manually organise my photos in folders into the photos folder. My folders looked something like this.


    Inside each of these folders were sub-folders like this.

    01-05-2008 - Beach
    03-06-2008 - Holiday
    01-05-2008 - Birthday Party
    01-05-2009 - Holiday
    15-08-2009 - Beach
    01-05-2010 - Beach
    03-06-2010 - Holiday


    Now, I would like to start using iPhoto on my mac and would like to keep some sort of organisation similar to the above,

    Q1) What is the best way to do this in iPhoto?

    Time machine is keeping a backup of iPhoto but I would also like to keep a backup on another external hard drive of just the original jpeg photos (not the iPhoto file) so they can be viewed on windows computers. Basically a folder/sub folders just like I had on my PC.

    Q2) What is the best way to to backup the original jpeg photos?

    Would it be best for me to import from my camera right into iPhoto and then somehow manually make my backup from there OR would it be best for me to import from my camera into the photos folder, make a backup, then import into iPhoto and delete from photos?
  2. Lesser Evets macrumors 68040

    Lesser Evets

    Jan 7, 2006
    I always save all pictures directly from camera to a folder somewhere. It bypasses iPhoto and allow for easy retrieval. Been doing it since 2000 when I got my first digital camera.

    Then I go through iPhoto with the camera and have a second set of files organized in there.

    Not sure that is help, since I never take the photos out of iPhoto's library and stash them elsewhere.
  3. Dave Braine macrumors 68040

    Dave Braine

    Mar 19, 2008
    Warrington, UK
    I'm only using iPhoto09, so there could be some differences in the latest version.

    You can create Folders and Folders within Folders, Albums and Albums within Folders.

    With your collection of photos, I would start at 2008 and Import each of your sub folders into iPhoto in turn. Create a 2008 Folder and then the sub folders, working through your collection.

    If you import all your photos in one go, iPhoto will display them in the main Photos/Library view in day/date order and it will take you ages to re-create your folder structure.

    Also, if you are importing from an external drive/USB stick, then ensure that the "Copy Items to The iPhoto Library" option in iPhoto Preferences>Advanced is ticked. If not, you will have to have that external device connected to view the pictures.
  4. MrMister111 macrumors 68020

    Jan 28, 2009
    To backup iPhoto use Time Machine firstly with either a external USB/Firewire/Thunderbolt HDD or a Time Capsule. This will backup iPhoto.

    If you have iPhoto on the actual Mac's internal HDD, then you have 2 copies, 1 internal, 1 external on Time machine. I use this and also subscribe to CrashPlan, which is a cloud backup, other ones exist obviously. This gives me 3 copies for safe keeping, not only of my photos but also my whole iMac.

    The originals are backed up in iPhoto in the "masters" folder, but dont mess with the iPhoto package/database file.

    You can copy the iPhoto library file found in your users>pictures directory to another external HDD formatted for MAC manually for backup if you want
  5. Big Stevie macrumors 6502a

    Big Stevie

    Jun 20, 2012
    Darren, I asked a similar question the other day and got some very good advice. Have a read of my thread here.

    Basically I was advised to consider forgetting altogether trying to store photos in the Windows fashion, the thread explains why, and it makes sense.
  6. DarrenUK thread starter macrumors regular


    Oct 23, 2012
    Southampton, UK
    This sounds very similar to what I want to do within iPhoto. What are the differences between albums and folders?


    Thanks, I will take a read.

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