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Photo organizing software


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Before I end up with a few thousand images on my computer...............now that I have ended up with a few thousand images on my computer I thought it might be an idea to try to organize them in some way. Having searched the Internet and found some amazingly pricy software that will do all sorts of things but fails to really spell out what exactly it will do I wondered if anyone on the forum can recommend anything.

What I am basically looking for is a way of cataloguing the photos so that they can be searched for and also sub categorized, i.e.:

Our French House - bathroom refit

In addition, I know that the photo contains data such as date and time taken and an easy way of showing that.

I suppose the other problem is that until you have used it you do not know exactly what you require so any help greatly appreciated.



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What you are looking for is "Free photo album software" like


Never tried it but it seems to be what you want and it is free. If it is no good then you can remove it and try another. If you have Windows Vista or 7 then there is built in photo album software, well actualy it is called "Windows Photo Gallery". You can find out how it works using the following link.


Hope that helps.

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When I download the images from the camera I simply create a new folder in either "My Pictures" or "Wife's Pictures" and name it with the date and a couple of keywords. e.g. "13.07.25 Catalunya Garden Bill Mary"

I can then later find pics of what we were doing around a particular date, what we saw on a trip to Catalunya, what the garden looked like in July, or what we did when Bill and Mary visited.

Any images that can be added to an existing folder, such as "Work on House" I move to the appropriate folder or sub folder, creating a new folder within an existing one if appropriate e.g. "Work on House" > "Kitchen" > "Plumbing and Wiring"


Edit: When I initially download the images, if there are a lot, i.e. more than 15 or 20, I stick them in a folder "Photo Downloads" on my Desktop, and sort them if necessary when I have the time.


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Many thanks folks......

Had looked at Picasa but was not overwhelmed by it.

Had a look at NCH and did not find it very intuitive.

Had a look at Microsofts offering and think I will give it a try

Yes, Lightroom might be nice but at £100+ per computer I will leave it.

I also realise that a folder system is important not 'French house' or even 'download 120412' which combined with what Microsoft has to offer may just do me.

In my earler search it does seem to me that some professional reviewers never want to say anything bad about a product in case in affects advertisement revenue

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If it really is just to find photos again ... why not give the photo a sensible name, and then create a set of folders with the subjects you are likely to need..  No point in taking a sledgehammer to crack a nut.

With a MAC, I have Iphoto.  I spent a lot of time putting and indexing all my photos on it, and then realised that even with that system I always had lots to look through as I could not remember how I'd indexed them, other than generally, so it took for ages to find anything. .  I am slowly taking them off and building a simple system to keep those I want to ... being pretty drastic and deleting poor photos, or those I cannot remember what or where they were taken.

Thus speaks the (ex) librarian - keep it simple and it will work.  A bit of thought on your subjects - et voila.  Also easier to back up.

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If you want the photos to be fully searchable then you have to give each one a title or description when you save it; a right pain in the aperture!

I do the same as Nomoss, keep it simple, create folders (in my case, for each month, and within those subfolders for any special events like "Liz's Wedding". This has the drawback of not being able to immediately point to a specific photo, but I've used this system for 12 years and I can generally workout where a photo will be. Also, I edit photos for emailing to friends etc, not wishing to send a batch of 4mb photos every time, and in this case I store the reduced images with a title in the same folder as the originals, thus a search for "Liz walks down the aisle" (or the keywords at least) will point to the right folder.

I never delete photos, and never amend/edit the originals; I always create an amended or edited copy.

I'm in favour of controlling my own files, and doing my own security.

A change or upgrade of machine doesn't require loading old software, just copying the top level photo folder plus its subfolders. It takes some time but it's easy. My family photo folder is currently 30GB.



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