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Can I create a second iPhoto library?

1142 Views 25 Replies Latest reply: Dec 11, 2012 10:52 AM by LarryHN RSS
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Jerry Dammers Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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Dec 9, 2012 9:33 AM

I've had a series of serious problems with my iPhoto library.


I've now reached the stage where I want to archive the corrupt library (but still be able to access it) and start a new library.


1) Is it possible to start a new library in iPhoto?

2) Is it likely that if I start a "new" library it will suffer the same corruption problems as my old one?


For info, the corrupt version frequently crashes;  loses faces data; and doesn't allow new faces to be added.


I also use Aperture but iPhoto is my primary application.


Thank you

  • LarryHN Level 9 Level 9 (54,900 points)
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    Dec 9, 2012 10:02 AM (in response to Jerry Dammers)

    What version of iPhoto doyhou have?


    to create a new iPhoto library depress the option key and launch iPhoto - create a new library


    to switch between them option launch and select library


    COrruption is caused by things happening including power surges, human error, software issues, etc - hwo likely is it that these will happen? that is how likely it is for the new library to become corrupt


    you probably can simply repair your existing library - depress and hold the option and command keys and launch iPhoto - rebuild the library


    the only real protection against corruption and photo loss due to other reasons is a good backup



  • LarryHN Level 9 Level 9 (54,900 points)
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    Dec 9, 2012 10:15 AM (in response to Jerry Dammers)

    there is no connection between different iPhoto libraries


    Have you tried rebuilding? Have you tried using iPhoto Library Manager - -  to rebuild?



  • LarryHN Level 9 Level 9 (54,900 points)
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    Dec 9, 2012 10:37 AM (in response to Jerry Dammers)



    Have you tried using iPhoto Library Manager - -  to rebuild?



  • Terence Devlin Level 10 Level 10 (121,745 points)
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    Dec 9, 2012 11:36 AM (in response to Jerry Dammers)

    1. Make a back up.


    2. Now use the 3rd party app which is recommended on here many, many times every day and is enormously successful at resovling problem. Seriously. If you have further problems then just revert to your back up.


    I understand that some folks have reservations about using 3rd party apps, though once you have thoroughly checked them out it's often the correct thing to do. Do you only use Ford wrenches on your Ford Car?


    3. No that app does not "mix" libraries up.

  • Terence Devlin Level 10 Level 10 (121,745 points)
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    Dec 10, 2012 2:04 AM (in response to Jerry Dammers)

    I'll not argue with you about the analogy, except to say that using different wrenches is not the same as a plug-in to iPhoto. Using a different Oil Filter or spark plugs maybe. And remember, we have no idea if it is a plug-in, that was only a guess. Have you, for instance, ever installed a plug in? Which ones?


    but I have lost days and days of manhours because iPhoto became corrput - it still causes me problems now as I'm living with an unpredictable library.


    So, stop losing days and days and fix it. "living with an unpredictable library" is a recipe for disaster. You know your Library is corrupt. Why one earth would you continue to trust it? Soone that will go pear shared entirely.


    You have two choices:


    1. Fix it.


    2. Start over from scratch with a new one.


    You can't do number 1. You've tried, it didn't work.


    Now Number 2 is the next step. You can do this with iPhoto Library Manager and save significant amounts of your work. Or you can just start over from scratch. Your choice, but it's most unwise to do nothing.

  • Terence Devlin Level 10 Level 10 (121,745 points)
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    Dec 10, 2012 2:55 AM (in response to Jerry Dammers)

    My last words.


    Apple's advice may well be good - but I'm not sure that's "Apple's Advice" so much as one employee. And frankly, on here we see reports of advice from Apple Store employees that is inaccurate ("iPhoto is only good for 25k photos, you can't use Photoshop and iPhoto, and others I have seen over the years).


    Don't you see that  these 15k photos will be in an unsafe environment? You really want to continue with that?



    See above where I said


    1. Make a Back up.


    That means what ever you do you can still return to the current status quo. As long as you have a back up of the current - mucked-up - library, it can't get worse.


    So the worst that can happen is nothing changes. The Best that can happen is it gets fixed.


    Library Manager is not a plug-in and does not complicate how iPhoto works. It simplifies working with multiple libraries for a start.


    And remember what exactly it does:


    Download iPhoto Library Manager and use its rebuild function. (In Library Manager it's the FIle -> Rebuild command)



    This will create an entirely new library. It will then copy (or try to) your photos and all the associated metadata and versions to this new Library, and arrange it as close as it can to what you had in the damaged Library. It does this based on information it finds in the iPhoto sharing mechanism - but that means that things not shared won't be there, so no slideshows, books or calendars, for instance - but it should get all your events, albums and keywords, faces and places back.



    Because this process creates an entirely new library and leaves your old one untouched, it is non-destructive, and if you're not happy with the results you can simply return to your old one. 


    So, make a back up - that's one level of protection, and then Library Manager is non-destructive so that's double the protection.


    Finally: search the forum. It is no exaggeration to say that Library Manager is recommended on here 50+ times every week for these kinds of problems. See how many folks find themselves worse off after using it.


    After that:


    The one thing you really cannot do is leave the photos in the damaged library. It is really, really unwise. If you don't want to use Library manager, then create a new Library


    Recover the Masters from the damaged one


    Import them to the new Library.


    To create a new Library:


    Hold down the option (or alt) key key and launch iPhoto. From the resulting menu select 'Create Library'

  • Terence Devlin Level 10 Level 10 (121,745 points)
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    Dec 10, 2012 5:17 AM (in response to Jerry Dammers)

    For info, the "damaged" library has been recreated as a new library on multiple occasions.  However, the problems persist.



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