11 Replies Latest reply: Jan 24, 2009 7:35 AM by Terence Devlin
Paul Hahm Level 1 (5 points)
I always drag and drop photos from iPhoto directly to my emails, and/or I drag and drop from the finder. I rarely use photo browser, but when I do, its never a problem. but recently, I took some photos with my canon camera and when I tried to drag and drop them, they wouldn't add to the email no matter what. when I had the photo over the email, the green circle with plus sign was there, but it just didn't happen. I tried everything and even looked at the info of the photo file itself and its not locked. this is only happening with 5 or 6 of the 100 photos I took, at least that I can find for now. but anyways, I would like to know why this happens and how I can change this. I don't think its the camera because the majority of the photos does not happen to be like this. Furthermore, this has never happened before. please help. thanks

macbook, Mac OS X (10.5.5)
  • Old Toad Level 10 (135,371 points)

    What happens if you drag those problem photos to the desktop and then into the email? Can they be added that way? Can you use the Mail button to add them to an email? Are these jpg files?

    TIP: For insurance against the iPhoto database corruption that many users have experienced I recommend making a backup copy of the Library6.iPhoto (iPhoto.Library for iPhoto 5 and earlier) database file and keep it current. If problems crop up where iPhoto suddenly can't see any photos or thinks there are no photos in the library, replacing the working Library6.iPhoto file with the backup will often get the library back. By keeping it current I mean backup after each import and/or any serious editing or work on books, slideshows, calendars, cards, etc. That insures that if a problem pops up and you do need to replace the database file, you'll retain all those efforts. It doesn't take long to make the backup and it's good insurance.

    I've created an Automator workflow application (requires Tiger or later), iPhoto dB File Backup, that will copy the selected Library6.iPhoto file from your iPhoto Library folder to the Pictures folder, replacing any previous version of it. It's compatible with iPhoto 6 and 7 libraries and Tiger and Leopard. Just put the application in the Dock and click on it whenever you want to backup the dB file. iPhoto does not have to be closed to run the application, just idle. You can download it at Toad's Cellar. Be sure to read the Read Me pdf file.

    Note: There's now an Automator backup application for iPhoto 5 that will work with Tiger or Leopard.
  • Paul Hahm Level 1 (5 points)
    Thanks for the advice. Im not on the computer which has the problems. but lets see if those suggestions work. anyways, thats definitely a good idea about the backup part. I do it with my time machine right now but I'll do it with the other computer as well.
    What is wrong with these files anyway? If it doesn't work by moving to desktop first etc. is there another explanation?
    thanks again
  • LarryHN Level 9 (76,907 points)
    I drag and drop from the finder. I rarely use photo browser

    This may be your problem - it is recommended that you do not go into the iPhoto library with the finder or any other program that is not iPhoto aware - doing so may corrupt your library and cause you to lose data

    It is much better to export them from iPhoto, to select them in iPhoto and use the mail button or to use the photo browser

  • Paul Hahm Level 1 (5 points)
    well noted. thanks for the comment. to be more specific, the part about dragging and dropping from the finder. those files I drag and drop from finder are actually never imported into iPhoto because they are work photos and for reasons of ease of categorization, I do it all through finder. but anyways, that was a background to the reason I personally use finder a lot in those situations. but if they are never imported into iPhoto and only used through finder, will that corrupt those files also? I haven't run into yet but since I do the drag and drop en masse, I actually don't know off hand if its not dragging and dropping all the files or not. In any case, thanks for the info and I'll keep that in mind. However, the photos I've had problems with were just uploaded photos from my camera which is why I can't seem to understand why they don't work.
  • Crabcakes Level 1 (0 points)
    I am having problem just dragging certain photos from iphoto 6 to the desktop. WHen I tried to back them all up on an external drive, it did not copy a lot of them.

  • LarryHN Level 9 (76,907 points)
    if they are never imported into iPhoto and only used through finder, will that corrupt those files also?

    No - and it is not the file that gets corrupted by mucking in the iPhoto database - it is the database which caused iPhoto to lose track of the photos

    anything that is not in iPhoto is free game - do what you want with it

    the answers to Old Toad's questions will be helpful

  • Terence Devlin Level 10 (137,900 points)

    Select one of the affected photos in the iPhoto Window and right click on it. From the resulting menu select 'Show File (or 'Show Original File' if that's available). A Finder Window should open with the file selected. Does it?


  • Crabcakes Level 1 (0 points)
    no it doesn't.
  • Terence Devlin Level 10 (137,900 points)
    Well that explains why you cannot drag the pics to the desktop - iPhoto has lost track of them.

    Back Up and try rebuild the library: hold down the apple and option (or alt) keys while launching iPhoto. Use the resulting dialogue to rebuild.

    IF that fails, please confirm the version of iPhoto you have (iPhoto Menu -. About iPhoto) and we can point you towards a solution.


  • Crabcakes Level 1 (0 points)
    I rebuilt database and tried to find original files (didn't do thumbnails options since I see them) and on several of them still, when i click on them and enlarge them in iphoto 6.0.6 it becomes a huge grey box with an ! in the middle.
  • Terence Devlin Level 10 (137,900 points)
    Have you made any changes in the iPhoto Library Folder - moved or renamed pics or folder? If so, go directly to step 3. Otherwise:

    Try these in order - from best option on down...

    1. Do you have an up-to-date back up? If so, try copy the library6.iphoto file from the back up to the iPhoto Library allowing it to overwrite the damaged file.

    2. Download iPhoto Library Manager and use its rebuild function. This will create a new library based on data in the albumdata.xml file. Not everything will be brought over - no slideshows, books or calendars, for instance - but it should get all your albums and keywords 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.

    3. If neither of these work then you'll need to create and populate a new library.

    To create and populate a new *iPhoto 6* library:

    Note this will give you a working library with the same Rolls and pictures as before, however, you will lose your albums, keywords, modified versions, books, calendars etc.

    Move the iPhoto Library to the desktop

    Launch iPhoto. It will ask if you wish to create a new Library. Say Yes.

    Go into the iPhoto Library on your desktop and find the Originals folder. From the Originals folder drag the individual Roll Folders to the iPhoto Window and it will recreate them in the new library.

    When you're sure all is well you can delete the iPhoto Library on your desktop.

    In the future, in addition to your usual back up routine, you might like to make a copy of the library6.iPhoto file whenever you have made changes to the library as protection against database corruption.