Wednesday, July 12 2006 @ 02:53 AM SGT Contributed by: Mack
Most people eventually run out of hard drive space before their iPhoto even kicks up a fuss. At press time, the current release of iPhoto 6.0 is touted to be able to handle up to 25,000 images without breaking a sweat.
So, what do you do when you run out of hard drive space?
Or, in the interest of preserving data integrity and hard drive space on your Mac, how do save your photos in an external hard drive but still view the photos as part of an iPhoto library?
The answer is unbelievably simple.
Before doing anything we have to include this caveat into this part of the tutorial:
iPhoto is configured to create a default iPhoto Library folder inside your Pictures folder within your Home folder - /Users/[your Home folder]/Pictures/iPhoto Library.
You should NEVER attempt to manipulate files directly from within this folder, instead use iPhoto's interface if you have to add, move or delete photos from your library. Messing with the iPhoto Library folder may result in data loss and permanent corruption of your iPhoto Library altogether.
Creating Remote iPhoto Libraries
All that is required is for you to hold down the Alt/Option key as you click the iPhoto icon to launch the application. If done correctly, you should then be greeted with a window that prompts you to either:
create a new iPhoto Library or;
choose an iPhoto Library
At this point, select "Create a new iPhoto Library" if you are attempting to start a new iPhoto Library, lets say, on an external hard drive. Navigate to the location on the external hard drive that you wish to start the remote iPhoto Library in and click OK to tell iPhoto to start creating the default file structure. You may also elect to name your iPhoto Library something more colourful than "iPhoto Library".
Linking Remote iPhoto Libraries
If you already have a remote iPhoto Library then ensure that the external media you created your remote iPhoto Library is connected to your Mac and select the "Choose an iPhoto Library" function, navigate to the location on your external media where the remote library is situated, select it and click OK to tell iPhoto to access the library.
You will immediately observe iPhoto displaying the photos in the order that it was last left (including albums which you may have created) on this remote library. Any changes or additions to this library will occur and remain saved in this working iPhoto Library.
If you happen to like to toggle between remote and local iPhoto Libraries than you may see the window prompting you to create/link an iPhoto Library, when you launch iPhoto, once the external media has been removed. This is a normal occurence because iPhoto remembers the file path to the last iPhoto Library that was accessed during the last session of iPhoto. If you want to use the local iPhoto Library, simply select the "Choose iPhoto Library" function and direct iPhoto back to the local iPhoto Library which is by default located at /Users/[your Home folder]/Pictures/iPhoto Library.