3 Replies Latest reply: Feb 16, 2013 1:42 PM by Old Toad
BPWMorro Level 1 Level 1 (75 points)

Hello, All (and hopefully Terrance & Old Toad, specifically!)


The environment: MBPro with OS 10.8.2, iPhoto 9.4.2. TM runs regularly, at least 5 times per week.

Situation: Two months ago took series of photos. A week later moved the series to iPhoto trash. Two weeks later emptied iPhoto Trash. Seven weeks later changed mind; decided I want to use the photos.

Questions: How do I recover them from iPhoto? What options are available with TM? Do I have to work with entire libraries or can I rumage inside the TM backup to find what I want and restore individual photos like individual documents?


POSSIBLE SCENARIO: it seems I can go back in TM to the time period when the photos were in iPhoto and restore the entire library from that 8 week ago period, then find the desired photos, save them manually elsewhere (ie, export to desktop for now), then re-restore the latest library from last night's TM and manually import the photos to the iphoto library....BUT wouldn't it be simpler if we could rummage in the two month old TM library, find what we wanted, and add it to the existing?


Am I missing something, or is this multiple restoration procedure the only way to recover individual photos with Time Machine?


Thanks to both of you for your continued guidance...

OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2)
  • Old Toad Level 10 Level 10 (131,560 points)

    Unfortunately recovering individual photos from a TM iPhoto library was dropped from iPhoto's capabilities with iPhoto 9 as I recall. 


    The possible sceanario you gave is the only way to do it.  Restore a library that has those photos, open it with iPhoto and export them to a folder on the Desktop, import the photos into your current working library and then delete  the resotred library.


    If there are not too many and you know the file names of them there may be a way to recover them without restoring the entire library. The method can be time consuming – up to 5 minutes per search.  If they are all in the same event it  makes it possible3 to get them all with one search.  Post back with answers to these questions if you're interensted and I'll lay out the how to.



  • BPWMorro Level 1 Level 1 (75 points)


    Thanks for confirmation.

    Know file names? You gotta be kidding; I hardly know my own anymore!

    Best; enjoy the sunshine in beautiful SoCal!


  • Old Toad Level 10 Level 10 (131,560 points)

    There is a possible way to recover those photos: 


    Restore a library that you're pretty sure will have those photos. Make sure you select "Keep Both" when asked:





    Then use the paid version of  iPhoto Library Manager  to merge the two libraries into a new, third library.  With iPLM's preferences set to not import duplicates you should get just one copy of very different photo in both libraries.  You may also recover other photos that you have deleted but those can be redelected.