3 Replies Latest reply: Aug 25, 2012 11:20 PM by LarryHN
curiousmartha Level 1 Level 1
I just upgraded to iphoto 11 and am baffled about where the individual photo files now live. My iphoto library lives on an external hard drive. Previously, when I wanted to upload to flickr, facebook, etc, email a photo, or open one to edit in Photoshop, I would open the external hard drive in Finder > External Hard drive > iPhoto Library > and then I could either select Original or Modified folder.

Now I can only get as far as iPhoto Library. How do I access my photo files now????

Macbook, Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • Old Toad Level 10 Level 10
    Photos for Mac
    Welcome to the Apple Discussions. You now use the Flickr button in iPhoto 11 to upload. Select the photos you want to upload and click on the Share button at the bottom right. Then select the Flickr option.

    Click to view full size

    For other uses outside of iPhoto the following is from one of Terence Devlin’s posts on file access for use outside of iPhoto. It’s the definitive treatise on the subject.

    Since iPhoto 7 (iLife 08) the old iPhoto Library Folder is now a Package File. This is simply a folder that looks like a file in the Finder. The change was made to the format of the iPhoto library because many users were inadvertently corrupting their library by browsing through it with other software or making changes in it themselves.

    Accessing the iPhoto Library Folder directly has never been supported in any version of iPhoto.

    There are many, many ways to access your files in iPhoto:

    For Users of 10.5 and later

    You can use any Open / Attach / Browse dialogue. On the left there's a Media heading, your pics can be accessed there. Command-Click for selecting multiple pics.

    Open dialogue
    Uploaded with plasq's Skitch!

    (Note the above illustration is not a Finder Window. It's the dialogue you get when you go File -> Open)


    You can access the Library from the New Message Window in Mail:

    New Message Window
    Uploaded with plasq's Skitch!

    For users of 10.4 and later ...

    Many internet sites such as Flickr and SmugMug have plug-ins for accessing the iPhoto Library. If the site you want to use doesn’t then some, one or any of these will also work:

    To upload to a site that does not have an iPhoto Export Plug-in the recommended way is to Select the Pic in the iPhoto Window and go File -> Export and export the pic to the desktop, then upload from there. After the upload you can trash the pic on the desktop. It's only a copy and your original is safe in iPhoto.

    This is also true for emailing with Web-based services. However, if you're using Gmail you can use iPhoto2GMail

    If you use Apple's Mail, Entourage, AOL or Eudora you can email from within iPhoto.

    If you use a Cocoa-based Browser such as Safari, you can drag the pics from the iPhoto Window to the Attach window in the browser.

    If you want to access the files with iPhoto not running:

    For users of 10.6 and later:

    You can download a free Services component from MacOSXAutomation which will give you access to the iPhoto Library from your Services Menu. Using the Services Preference Pane you can even create a keyboard shortcut for it.

    For Users of 10.4 and later:

    Create a Media Browser using Automator (takes about 10 seconds) or use this free utility Karelia iMedia Browser

    Other options include:

    1. Drag and Drop: Drag a photo from the iPhoto Window to the desktop, there iPhoto will make a full-sized copy of the pic.

    2. File -> Export: Select the files in the iPhoto Window and go File -> Export. The dialogue will give you various options, including altering the format, naming the files and changing the size. Again, producing a copy.

    3. Show File: Right- (or Control-) Click on a pic and in the resulting dialogue choose 'Show File'. A Finder window will pop open with the file already selected.

    You can set Photoshop (or any image editor) as an external editor in iPhoto. (Preferences -> General -> Edit Photo: Choose from the Drop Down Menu.) This way, when you double click a pic to edit in iPhoto it will open automatically in Photoshop or your Image Editor, and when you save it it's sent back to iPhoto automatically. This is the only way that edits made in another application will be displayed in iPhoto.

    All of the above are a: faster and b: Safer than rooting around in the old Library Folder.

  • Lazinator Level 1 Level 1

    In previous versions of iPhoto you could just right-click on a photo and the choose "show file" option from the dialog.


    In iPhoto 11, the "briliant" minds of apple have placed this option in the file menue. While I was inclined to criticize this at first, I realised that its better now... because if you have merged multiple photos into one collection, you can now select multiple photos within a merged collection, then select "reveal in finder" from the file menu, and presto! multiple finder windows pop up showing you all your original or modified images. -Rather slick actually.


    Screen Shot 2012-08-26 at 9.27.00 AM.jpg

  • LarryHN Level 10 Level 10
    Photos for Mac

    Direct access to the iPhoto library is not supported and never has been. Use the media browser which is supported