Migrate Iphoto Library To Another Mac

Check that you migrated the correct library

Oct 25, 2019 On your old Mac: If you started your old Mac in target disk mode or are migrating from a Time Machine backup, skip these four steps. Open Migration Assistant. Click Continue. When asked how you want to transfer your information, select the option to transfer to another Mac. Click Continue. On your new Mac.

If you have more than one library in your Pictures folder, Photos will ask you to choose a library to migrate the first time you open the app. This library becomes the default library, and contains the pictures Photos will display every time you open the app.

If you choose a different library the first time you open Photos — for example, an older iPhoto library — you might not see all the pictures you expect. You can migrate another library by holding down the Option key when you open Photos. This brings up the Choose Library dialog, which lets you select from the available photo libraries in your Pictures folder:

  1. Apr 30, 2017  Unless your iPhoto version is iPhoto 7.x or less all you need to to is copy the library package to the Pictures folder on the new iMac. Then drag the library package onto the Photos icon in the Dock. It will migrate the library to a new Photos library in the same location.
  2. Once the library has copied over, hold down the Option/Alt key and launch Photos. Click Other Library and navigate to the new location on the external drive.

Click My Albums in the sidebar to see all your albums

The first time you open Photos, you'll see your pictures in the Moments view. This view shows your pictures individually, but doesn't show your albums. To see them, click My Albums in the Photos app sidebar.

Find iPhoto Events that have become albums

When you migrate an iPhoto library to Photos, iPhoto Events are turned into albums. You can find these albums in a folder called iPhoto Events in Photos' Albums view.

They appear to be all sorts of thumbnail files, all with a.jpg or.jpeg extension. I then rotated a.HEIC file within Apple Photos, and again a lot of.jpg and.jpeg files were synced, apparently all thumbnails of various sorts. Upload mac photo library to google photos. Still, about 9 files were updated, but they were not all the strange extensions listed above.

Turn on My Photo Stream

If you had pictures more than 30 days old in My Photo Stream that you didn't import into iPhoto or Aperture before moving the library to Photos, those pictures won't appear in Photos.

If you recently created your Apple ID, My Photo Stream might not be available. If My Photo Stream isn't available, use iCloud Photos to keep your photos and videos in iCloud.

You can turn on My Photo Stream in Photos with these steps:

  1. In the menu bar, choose Photos > Preferences.
  2. In the Preferences window, click the iCloud tab.
  3. Click My Photo Stream.

Wait for Photos to generate all picture thumbnails

When you migrate a library to Photos, it can take some time to generate thumbnails for the entire library. A picture will appear as a white square until its thumbnail is created.

Learn how Photos displays Smart Albums and RAW + JPEG image pairs

Photos displays some Smart Albums differently than the program that created them. Learn more about How Photos displays Smart Albums from iPhoto or Aperture.

If your Aperture library included RAW + JPEG image pairs, only the JPEG file will be visible in Photos.

View all burst pictures

Sets of pictures taken in burst mode with your iPhone are displayed with a single thumbnail in Photos. To see all the pictures from the burst, double-click the thumbnail and then click 'Make a Selection…'

Learn more

After you update to Photos for macOS, turn on iCloud Photos to keep your photos and videos securely stored in iCloud and up to date on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, Apple TV, and iCloud.com.


By Stephen Robles
Saturday, January 24, 2015, 11:00 pm PT (02:00 am ET)

Today's digital cameras and advanced smartphones like the iPhone 6 take stunningly detailed photos, but all that extra resolution comes at the price of larger image files. Moving part or all of your iPhoto Library to an external hard drive is one of the most effective ways to free up precious space.

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.

Migrate Iphoto Library To Another Mac Pro

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.

How Do I Move Iphoto Library To Another Mac

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.

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.

Migrate Iphoto Library To Another Mac Computer

Finally, to free up the space on your internal hard drive, open the Trash from the Dock or Finder window and click Empty Trash in the upper right corner.

Migrate Iphoto Library To Another Mac Account

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.

Export Iphoto Library To Another Mac

  • Seagate 1TB Backup Plus Slim for Mac for $72.99 from B&H and Amazon.com or $88.99 from MacMall
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  • HGST 1TB Touro S Ultra-Portable External Hard Drive for $69.99 from B&H or $83.99 from MacMall
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  • Western Digital 1TB My Passport Drive for Mac from Amazon for $68.45, $69.00 from B&H or $70.99 from MacMall
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