Re-build iPhoto library?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by globalist, Jul 22, 2014.

  1. globalist, Jul 22, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2014

    globalist macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 19, 2009
    #1
    Is there any way to do this?

    My colleague deleted his entire iPhoto Library and emptied the Trash. Doh!

    I've since managed to recover 100GB worth of picture files using EaseUS Data Recovery (free), but they are all in one folder and have "raw" file names (e.g. FILE13888.PNG).

    Now I've opened iPhoto and it seems to have automatically created a new library because now I can see the Iphoto Library package in his Home/Pictures folder whereas before I couldn't. If I "show package contents" I can see 2 library files in the package, one called Library.iPhoto and the other called Library6.iPhoto, both from around the same date/time the colleague deleted his photos.

    So far so good? Can I now just drag and drop the recovered files to iPhoto? Or will I end up with an unorganized mess? Is there any way to ensure the library will be as it was before it was deleted?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

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    Location:
    California
    #2
    I would create a new iPhoto library by holding the option key when you launch iPhoto. You will get a popup asking if you want to create a new library and what to name it.

    Once that is launched with the new library then just drag and drop all the recovered photos into iPhoto and they will be imported. Thing is, they are going to be a big disorganized mess.

    Do the recovered photos look like the have the original/correct date and time for the file (command-i on a photo in Finder)? If they do, you can help this somewhat by going into iPhoto prefs and telling it to split events by week or day before you do the import.

    [​IMG]

    But beyond that, there is no way to get the back organized like they were other than doing it manually.
     
  3. globalist, Jul 22, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2014

    globalist thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    OK at this point, before I do anything, I have a couple of questions:

    1. Did iPhoto really create a new (empty) library by itself and if yes why should I create yet another new one? And is it even possible to completely delete an iPhoto library from the disk? Does dumping all your photos into the trash and emptying the trash in iPhoto really do that?

    2. The lost photos I'm not sure all of them are recovered, seeing as there's a lot of what seems like internet temporary image files (gifs, tiff, etc that do not look like camera photos at all), among all the jpegs (that do look like camera photos). Any experience with this EaseUS Data Recovery tool? Why did it only find the raw picture files, and not the photo library itself in the Home folder?

    Thanks!
     
  4. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #4
    1. If you have no iPhoto library and launch the app it will create a new one for you. I only suggested making a new one again to be certain you were starting fresh, since there seems to be some confusion. Yep... if you delete the library then empty trash it is gone. You may be able to recovery all or part of it with recovery tools, but often those tools result in what you are seeing... that is a random bunch of files recovered.

    2. I have no experience with that recovery program, so can't comment specifically. But in general what happens when you delete a file is the file is not really deleted but the pointer to that file at the OS level is just removed and the space it used is marked as available. So if you just delete one document the use a recovery program to find and restore it soon after the delete, you have good odds of a full recovery. But when you delete something like the iPhoto library that is really just a folder with thousands and thousands of files inside, you need to recover each of those files and hope none of the space occupied by those files has been overwritten by the OS. You can see how this gets difficult with a large iPhoto library.
     
  5. globalist thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 19, 2009
    #5
    OK I ran the free version of Wondershare Data Recovery and it sees the old iPhoto Library it seems, but I have to fork out money to actually be able to recover it. Is it worth it? What can I do with the recoverd library on one hand, and the raw photo files on the other?
     
  6. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #6
    Well the raw photos (assuming you got them all) are just going to be a pile of photos with no organization when you drop them back into iPhoto. So Iguess it depends on how much work it would be to reorganize all the events like they were. I know for me I could probably never them back like they are now just from memory with nothing but the photos.
     
  7. globalist thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2009
    #7
    I know but do I just drag and drop the recovered photos onto iPhoto (with the recovered library) and it should do the trick?
     
  8. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #8
    No, if you can successfully recover the entire library intact, you could just drop the entire recovered iPhoto library file back in the pictures folder then option launch iPhoto and choose that as the library and be back in business without importing anything at all. Again though, this is assuming the whole library gets recovered.
     
  9. globalist thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 19, 2009
    #9
    I don't think I could recover the whole library, seeing as there is no Master folder inside.
     
  10. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #10
    If you can't recover the whole thing with events and all intact, and you already have all the photos themselves, then there is not much point in even trying to recover the library. You might as well just make a new library and drop in all the raw photos and start over putting your events back together manually.
     
  11. Fishrrman macrumors G5

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #11
    I'd like to offer some comments "as an aside".

    I don't have a huge photo library -- in iPhoto, Aperture, and otherwise.

    But from the start I was wary about letting either iPhoto or Aperture "manage" the storage of my photos -- in the same way I refuse to let iTunes "manage" my music files.

    So.... on a separate volume (actually, a different drive) I maintain an "archive" of saved pics, stored in a folder/file format that is easily recognizable and searchable BY ME. This volume gets backed up via CarbonCopyCloner to its own backup, as well.

    This is in addition to whatever I've imported into iPhoto.

    Now, if iPhoto or Aperture ever screws up (or more likely, if -I- screw up in photo management within those apps), I have a completely separate repository of my pics on which to fall back.

    Granted, this consumes more space, but I have issues with any app that will "scramble" my stuff in the process of assembling its own database. I will let the apps do that, so long as I have a "plain ol' folder/file storage" paradigm somewhere else, just in case.

    If you use Aperture, you don't have to "import" originals into the Aperture library. Aperture will "leave your originals where they are" (if you so choose), and just keep its own modified versions within the Aperture library.

    Just my opinion on how to arrange things, and I realize that most folks' will be different...
     

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