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Rebuild your iPhoto library to fix common errors or missing pics

Rebuild your iPhoto library to fix common errors or missing pics

Most of the common problems Mac users have with iPhoto are easily resolved by rebuilding the program’s corrupt library. You’ll be up and running in no time.

Apple’s award-winning iLife suite is known for its simplicity and ease-of-use, but that doesn’t stop it from hiccuping every now and then. The application may not open correctly, a photo could be missing, or some of your image thumbnails could be out of whack. A vast majority of the time, iPhoto’s library database merely gets confused and needs to start over again. That doesn’t mean you’ll lose your photos or have to import them again — iPhoto just needs to be told to reindex the files.

To initiate this activity, quit iPhoto completely. Press Option+Command on your keyboard and hold it as you re-open iPhoto. You will be brought to a somewhat overwhelming dialogue box that presents a series of options. If you’re not quite sure what’s causing the problems you’re having, the safest bet would be to select the checkboxes next to all of them. It might take a bit of time depending on the number of images you have, but it will often yield the best results.

Rebuild your iPhoto library

Click the Rebuild button and iPhoto will do its thing with no need for involvement on your part. Once it’s finished, your entire photo library should (hopefully) be available and fully functional again. Simple enough, right?

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6 Comments Have Been Posted (Leave Your Response)

iphoto would not open as it could not find iphoto Library; created a newe library (Iphoto Library -2) original library is dimmed and shows zero mbytes. BUT still apparently occupies hard disk space ~12Gig

Is there a way to get iphoto to recognize and reorder original library. I do have a backup but not with “Faces”, Events current.

Thank you!

Your suggestion worked great! My wife’s iPhoto Library disappeared today, but after following your directions, all is well.

Thank you!

Deleted my 28,000 photos!

Your directions worked great. After what I read around the web I was very concerned, but I I liked your explanation of the problem and I felt good about proceeding with “the fix”.
FYI-it took about 45 minutes to restore 160 GB worth of photos and movies via a firewire 800 to the external hard drive where I have our photo library stored. Thanks.

Just a note of thanks. I’d “lost” my iPhoto pictures after trying to get rid of a spinning ball of doom. Other sites’ instructions to “rebuild your Library” left me clueless. Your specifics made all the difference. Thanks again!

You’re amazing! Thank you so much for your advice in plain English. I finally discovered your article which made sense and worked! Many, many thanks for the recovery of video clips I thought I had lost forever!