Mac Copy Photos From Photo Library
Jan 29, 2015 Cool Tip: If you want to transfer your iPhoto Library to another Mac just plug your drive to it and copy your iPhoto library backup to the target Mac’s Pictures folder. Be warned though, this. Apr 04, 2020 In the Photos app, click on Preferences General and select ‘Use as System Photo Library’. This is mandatory if you use iCLoud with your Photo library. Go to System Preferences iCloud Photos Options. Select iCloud Photo Library to turn iCloud back on for your Photos.
Your Photos library holds all your photos, albums, slideshows, and print projects. If your library is large, and you want to free up storage space on your Mac, turn on iCloud Photo Library and use Optimize Mac Storage, or move your library to an external drive.
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Before you start, be sure to back up your library.
Prepare your drive
You can store your library on an external storage device, such as a USB or Thunderbolt drive formatted as APFS or Mac OS Extended (Journaled).1 Find out how to check the format of your external storage device.
To prevent data loss, Apple doesn't recommend storing photo libraries on external storage devices like SD cards and USB flash drives, or drives that are shared on a network.
Move your Photos library to an external storage device
- Quit Photos.
- In the Finder, go to the external drive where you want to store your library.
- In another Finder window, find your library. The default location is Users > [username] > Pictures, and it's named Photos Library.
- Drag your library to its new location on the external drive. If you see an error, select your external drive's icon in the Finder, then choose File > Get Info. If the information under Sharing & Permissions isn't visible, click , then make sure the 'Ignore ownership on this volume' checkbox is selected. If it's not selected, click to unlock it, enter an administrator name and password, then select the checkbox.2
- After the move is finished, double-click Photos Library in its new location to open it.
- If you use iCloud Photo Library, designate this library as the System Photo Library.
Delete original library to save space
After you open your library from its new location and make sure that it works as expected, you can delete the library from its original location.
Repair Mac Photos Library
In a Finder window, go back to your Pictures folder (or whichever folder you copied your library from) and move Photos Library to the trash. Then choose Finder > Empty Trash to delete the library and reclaim disk space.
Open another Photos library
If you have multiple libraries, here's how to open a different one:
- Quit Photos.
- Press and hold the Option key while you open Photos.
- Select the library that you want to open, then click Choose Library.
Photos uses this library until you open a different one.
If you have a permissions issue with your library, you might be able to resolve the issue by using the Photos library repair tool.
1. You can't move your library to a disk that's used for Time Machine backups.
2. If the volume isn't formatted APFS or Mac OS Extended (Journaled), or has been used for Time Machine backups but hasn't been erased, this checkbox will either not be present, or won't be selectable after unlocking. Erase and reformat the drive for this option to be available.
By Stephen Robles
Saturday, January 24, 2015, 11:00 pm PT (02:00 am ET)
Before starting the process, we suggest making an up to date Time Machine backup of your computer to an external hard drive or Time Capsule. Be sure the external hard drive you use to perform this backup is a separate unit from the one you will move the iPhoto Library to should anything happen.
If you have an account with a cloud storage service, such as Dropbox, Google Drive or even iCloud Drive, you can also upload the iPhoto Library to these services for extra redundancy.
To begin moving your library, open iPhoto, click File in the Menu Bar and select Switch to Library.
A new window will appear listing any and all iPhoto Libraries detected on your computer. If you're not sure where the iPhoto Library file is located, look at the (Default) listing and the file path will be listed underneath. This should be located in the Pictures folder of your Home directory.
Quit iPhoto by going to Quit iPhoto in the iPhoto Menu Bar or pressing Cmd+Q. Connect the external hard drive that you will use to copy the iPhoto Library. You should see it appear on your desktop.
Open a new Finder window and click Pictures in the left sidebar. Click and drag the iPhoto Library file onto the external hard drive icon on your Desktop.
Depending on how large your library is and the connection speed of the external drive, it may take several minutes or longer to complete the copy process.
Once the copy is completed, hold the Option key on your keyboard and open iPhoto from the Dock or Applications folder. A new window will pop up asking you to Create a New Library, Choose the Selected Library or Other Library. Click on Other Library.
In the browser window that appears, navigate to your external hard drive, click the iPhoto Library file you've copied and click Choose.
iPhoto will open and as long as the external hard drive is connected, will reference the library on the external drive and not on your computer's drive.
Mac Copy Photos From Photo Library To Usb
Quit iPhoto once again and eject the external hard drive holding your new iPhoto Library. Open a new Finder window and navigate to the Pictures folder in the left sidebar again.
Right click or Ctrl+click on the iPhoto file and move it to the Trash.
Finally, to free up the space on your internal hard drive, open the Trash from the Dock or Finder window and click
Move Photo Library MacEmpty Trash in the upper right corner.
Your iPhoto Library has officially been removed from the internal drive. You can now reconnect the external hard drive you used to copy the iPhoto library, open iPhoto and use it as normal.
If you open iPhoto without your external hard drive connected, iPhoto will give you an error message saying the 'Library cannot be found.' Quit iPhoto, connect the external hard drive and reopen to fix.
For those looking to expand their beyond their Mac's internal storage HDD or SSD, AppleInsider recommends having at least 1TB of extra space at the ready. A few high quality external and portable hard drive options from Seagate, HGST and Western Digital are listed below.
- Seagate 1TB Backup Plus Slim for Mac for $72.99 from B&H and Amazon.com or $88.99 from MacMall
- Also available in 2TB for $99 from Amazon and B&H or $149.99 from MacMall
- HGST 1TB Touro S Ultra-Portable External Hard Drive for $69.99 from B&H or $83.99 from MacMall
- Available in 4TB for $149 from Amazon and B&H
- Western Digital 1TB My Passport Drive for Mac from Amazon for $68.45, $69.00 from B&H or $70.99 from MacMall
- Available in 2TB for $96.24 from Amazon, $99 from B&H or $101.99 from MacMall