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Question: Photo dates wrong when Importing Photos to Mac from PC

Hi all, I’ve just bought my first Mac after years of PC ownership. I am trying to import all my photos to the Mac Photos app. I’m running the

latest version of all the software, operating system etc.

All my photos are on a network drive, which I copied over to my mac. I have double checked (using my PC) and all the metadata is all there on the network drive.


When I view the files in the Finder, I see Date Created as today (ie the day I copied over the photos), and Date Modified as the date the photo was actually taken. I can’t see any other metadata in the Finder app, or when I right click and “get info”.


The problem arises when I try to import the photos to the Photos app. The Photos app uses the “Date Created” to timestamp the photos.. so I have thousands of photos dated “today” when I view the photos in the app – even though they were taken years ago.


Now.. I tried uploading some photos to my iCloud photo library from my PC using iCloud for windows.. and.. the uploaded photos appear correctly in the photos app when I use this method.

I don’t want to upload my entire library via iCloud for Windows.. that would take ages.. but I really want to know why this is happening when I copy the files across.


Any help much appreciated. Thanks !

iMac, macOS High Sierra (10.13.3)

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Mar 5, 2018 7:48 AM in response to Mltapuach In response to Mltapuach

When I view the files in the Finder, I see Date Created as today (ie the day I copied over the photos), and Date Modified as the date the photo was actually taken. I can’t see any other metadata in the Finder app, or when I right click and “get info”.

That is correct - the finder is a file manager and deals and displays only file metadata - the photo dae is part of the photo metadata not the file metadata, when you use a photo program like Photos or preview you will see the photo metadata

The problem arises when I try to import the photos to the Photos app. The Photos app uses the “Date Created” to timestamp the photos.. so I have thousands of photos dated “today” when I view the photos in the app – even though they were taken years ago.

That indicates that Photos is not seeing correct photo metadata so is using all it has, the file metadata, how exactly are you importing these photos? If you open one in Preview and look at the metadata using the inspector what do you see?


LN

Mar 5, 2018 7:48 AM

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Mar 5, 2018 10:34 AM in response to Mltapuach In response to Mltapuach

When I view the files in the Finder, I see Date Created as today (ie the day I copied over the photos), and Date Modified as the date the photo was actually taken. I can’t see any other metadata in the Finder app, or when I right click and “get info”.

Photos is using the capture date set by the camera as an EXIF tag.

Only, if the camera set no EXIF tag, Photos will use the file creation date instead.

If you copy files between drives, the file creation date may change. If the image files have been created by a digital camera, the EXIF tag for the capture date should be present. Are your image files perhaps scanned photos without a capture date?

Mar 5, 2018 10:34 AM

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Mar 5, 2018 12:17 PM in response to Mltapuach In response to Mltapuach

I run through a batch of photos, editing them in Lightroom Classic CC on my PC, and upload them via iCloud and until recently (last week), the same thing started happening to me where it would just keep the date created as when these photos were taken.

So I had to manually go through 100 photos and "Adjust Date and Time" using the time that Lightroom keeps as "Capture Time" and "Capture Date." Also missing was the location information. Also missing was the Camera Info and thus it shows no camera information. I've already got a post on the Lightroom forum but this may be a Photos issue.

I'll keep an eye on this issue and report back if I hear anything.

Sorry to hear about your struggle with your entire photo library. I hope we find a solution to this.

Mar 5, 2018 12:17 PM

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Mar 5, 2018 12:17 PM in response to LarryHN In response to LarryHN

Hi LarryHN..

It has lots of exif data, but in the general tab it only shows Date created & date modified. I've attached some screenshots :

User uploaded file

User uploaded file

User uploaded file

User uploaded file


When I view the properties of the same file in the same location using my PC, I see the "Date Taken" field in the list of metadata..

User uploaded file

User uploaded file


Does this help ?


Thanks

Mar 5, 2018 12:17 PM

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Mar 5, 2018 12:45 PM in response to Mltapuach In response to Mltapuach

When I export this correctly displayed image from my library (to the desktop), so that I can see the file details, I see there is an additional section of metadata, called IPTC, that contains the correct info. This is the metadata that the Mac cannot see:

User uploaded file

so that's the problem... how do we solve it ? 🙂

Mar 5, 2018 12:45 PM

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Mar 5, 2018 1:54 PM in response to Mltapuach In response to Mltapuach

Yes - the EXIF date within the photo shows the creating date as 26 Feb 2018 at 8:15 pm - that is what Photos will use as the photo creation date/time since that is what the photo tells about its creation - if that is incorrect then something earlier in your workflow is including the incorrect creation date


LN

Mar 5, 2018 1:54 PM

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Mar 5, 2018 1:57 PM in response to towers00 In response to towers00

the solution is simple - include the correct information in the EXIF/IPTC data for the photo and Photos will use it - if your workflow includes wrong information then obviously Photos will use that


So the solution is to provide correct information


LN

Mar 5, 2018 1:57 PM

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Mar 6, 2018 1:13 AM in response to LarryHN In response to LarryHN

Thanks LN,

The information is there - but the Mac can't see it. It can only be seen from the windows PC..
That's why when I upload the file to icloud via windows it has the right info, but when I import the file using the Mac it does not..

Mar 6, 2018 1:13 AM

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Mar 6, 2018 8:13 AM in response to Mltapuach In response to Mltapuach

the information that is there is incorrect in the screen shot you posted


Yes - the EXIF date within the photo shows the creating date as 26 Feb 2018 at 8:15 pm - that is what Photos will use as the photo creation date/time since that is what the photo tells about its creation - if that is incorrect then something earlier in your workflow is including the incorrect creation date

LN

Mar 6, 2018 8:13 AM

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Mar 6, 2018 9:43 AM in response to Mltapuach In response to Mltapuach

When I view the properties of the same file in the same location using my PC, I see the "Date Taken" field in the list of metadata..

User uploaded file

Which application is this screenshot from?

I cannot tell from the screenshot, if the program is simply using the file creation date as the date taken, or if the file has an embedded EXIF tag with capture date.

Could you run exiftool on your PC or use another program that will show all EXI tags on the PC? You can download exiftool here: https://sno.phy.queensu.ca/~phil/exiftool/

Mar 6, 2018 9:43 AM

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Mar 6, 2018 11:34 AM in response to léonie In response to léonie

Hi Leonie, it’s the capture date in exit data. The application is simply windows explorer, I right clicked on the file and selected properties.

You can see from the other pc screenshot that the creation and modified date are also there - but this is the capture date, and this is the info that the Mac can’t read …

Mar 6, 2018 11:34 AM

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Question: Photo dates wrong when Importing Photos to Mac from PC