Apple iPhoto 11 - Library Switching

How To… Switch Between iPhoto Libraries At Lightning Speed

by John Carroll on December 12, 2013

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iPhoto’11 is the most recent release of iPhoto and only runs on Macs using OSX 10.9 Mavericks.

We’ll look at iPhoto library switching in Mavericks first, then cover older versions.

At this point you’re probably saying “Wait… I can have more than one iPhoto library?”

You can have as many iPhoto libraries as you like. If you want to know how to create them read – How To… Create A New iPhoto Library

Switching iPhoto Libraries In OSX 10.9 Mavericks

  • Open iPhoto ’11
  • iPhoto will open the last library you were using.
  • In the Menu Bar go to the File menu and select Switch To Library…

Apple iPhoto 11Switch Libraries...

  • A window opens asking “Which iPhoto library do you want iPhoto to use”
  • You can choose a library from the box or click Other Library… and locate a library in another location.
  • Once you have located the correct library, click Choose.

iPhoto 11 - Which iPhoto Library Do You Want To Use

  • You will be returned to the iPhoto screen and a dialog box will drop down asking if you want to close and relaunch iPhoto to open the new library. Click Relaunch.

iPhoto 11 - Switch Libraries Relaunch Box

  • iPhoto closes and reopens using the new library.

Two Important Things To Remember

  1. The library that you last use is now the default library and will automatically open the next time you open iPhoto.
  2. If you attach a media device to import photos and video, they will be imported into the library you are currently using.

Switching iPhoto Libraries In Older Versions Of iPhoto

  • Hold the Option key down and click the iPhoto icon in the dock.

Apple Keyboard Highlighting Option Key

  • A window opens asking “Which iPhoto library do you want iPhoto to use”
  • You can choose a library from the box or click Other Library… and locate a library in another location.
  • Once you have located the correct library, click Choose.
  • iPhoto will launch the library you selected.

If you’d like to switch to a different library, you must close iPhoto and repeat the procedure.

Hope this helps. Now you can finally start that photo organization project you’ve been putting of.

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How To… Switch Between iPhoto Libraries At Lightning Speed was last modified: December 12th, 2013 by John Carroll
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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Avatar 1 Sandy March 18, 2014 at 12:16 pm

Sounds so simple, when some one tells you, thanks – I did not realise their was a trash in I photos… What a dummy!!!

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John Carroll 2 John Carroll March 19, 2014 at 12:09 am

Sadly, Apple Macs and software don’t come with instructions like they used to.

Reply

Avatar 3 Sandy March 18, 2014 at 1:44 am

Great instructions, but how do I move photos from 1 library to the other. I have tried copying the library and then deleting unwanted photos but the file size does not reduce? What am I doing wrong?

Reply

John Carroll 4 John Carroll March 18, 2014 at 2:40 am

Hi Sandy – After you delete the unwanted photos in the iPhoto library, go to iPhoto in the Menu Bar and choose Empty iPhoto Trash. – John

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