Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
    Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England
    Posts
    95
    Thanks
    9
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Photo management software

    Can anyone recommend some good photo management software to replace Picasa which, for reasons discussed below, is no longer suitable for my purposes?

    I am storing my photos on a Synology NAS for viewing on multiple clients around the house. I have no desire now, nor in the foreseeable future, to put them in the cloud. All the photos are jpegs, and I doubt I will need to use Raws. I want to edit the collection by deleting failed and second rate shots and tagging with a description, and for this I like Picasa's ability to place 2 shots side by side. Seeing the metadata of the shot is therefore important. Only occasionally do I edit the photo itself except to rotate it. However, I do use Picasa when I want to print.

    The editing is done from either of 2 Win 7 clients, directly on the NAS (there is no way I would dare delete a photo my wife has taken without permission!). I want to be able to produce subsets of photos from a particular event for more selected viewing (i.e. albums).

    I like the Synology media server, but their Photostation is rather more clunky than Picasa for the above tasks and rotations it makes do not always pick up elsewhere.

    Picasa is not ideal for several reasons. It is not designed to run on a NAS, and needs a separate plug-in to do so. Even so, if you upload a photo collection from one client, edits made with another client do not seem to "take". But most importantly, it has been discontinued.

    Any suggestions from someone who has similar needs would be much appreciated.

    Chris

  2. #2
    WS Lounge VIP access-mdb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Oxfordshire, UK
    Posts
    2,024
    Thanks
    162
    Thanked 188 Times in 181 Posts
    I use Picasa and I've just opened a file on my Seagate NAS without problems. Obviously the Synology may well be different.

    As far as being discontinued is concerned, it still works, it will work for quite some time and I won't have to try and learn about any changes Google might have made to the interface.

    I've been looking for something to replace Picasa for some time and haven't found anything yet. I like the fact that you don't have to keep clicking on a folder at the left hand side to see the pics in that folder - the display is continuous. When you consider I have ~19,000 photos in the system, it saves a lot of time looking for particular shots (though I do tag them anyway). Its editing facilities are good enough for most of my requirements, but I have paint.net, Irfanview, Nikon View NX2 and GIMP to do more complex ones if needed.

    As I can edit my NAS pics, I will see if a change on one of my PCs will be picked up by another. Can you be more specific about what doesn't take between two clients?
    What do you mean nothing is impossible? I've been doing nothing for years.

  3. The Following User Says Thank You to access-mdb For This Useful Post:

    chris b (2017-03-13)

  4. #3
    Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England
    Posts
    95
    Thanks
    9
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
    access-mdb

    The problem with using Picasa on a NAS, as I discovered some years ago, is that Picasa's database is located on the client PC. Therefore, if you make any changes in the native product on one client PC, then the database on any other client has not been updated.

    To get round that problem, one of the Picasa team developed an add-on that relocated the database onto the NAS. That seemed to work fine for me for quite some time, but more recently I have been trying to make changes to the collection on a second client (or, more accurately, I have been asking my wife to edit the photos she took). I found that some of the changes she made were not reflected when we looked at the collection later. Although I do not have definitive proof of the reason, the symptoms are consistent with a permission issue where only the client that uploaded the photos is allowed to edit them. One can imagine workarounds, whereby folders are copied onto a client for editing and then copied back afterwards, but they are less than ideal.

    Does that make sense?

    Chris

  5. #4
    WS Lounge VIP access-mdb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Oxfordshire, UK
    Posts
    2,024
    Thanks
    162
    Thanked 188 Times in 181 Posts
    What I've found in using Picasa to add tags is that it adds them to the photo and also into its database. I have on occasion moved photos so that I can rescan them. When I do that looking at the photo's tags, it still has the same ones, but when I use other software to look at the tags, they are missing from the EXIF data of the photo. Deleting the tags then redoing them fixes this problem.

    Perhaps a brief explanation of how I do tagging in Picasa. This is the same whether its from my digital cameras or with scanned negs and slides. I do the tagging, captioning, dating and geotagging in Picasa. It's very easy and quick. I use software called EXIFtoolgui to add EXIF data that Picasa doesn't have the facility to change. I then export all the Exif data using EXIFtoolgui and read the data into a database. I then eyeball it to see if I've not actually added all the data I want. There are times when I've missed adding the data, but I've also noticed the missing data as described above. Wherever I've looked at the photos on another device or uploaded them to the cloud, they always have the correct Exif data. I've never found any issues as you describe.

    It would be useful to know what changes weren't made as I could do something similar to see what happens.
    What do you mean nothing is impossible? I've been doing nothing for years.

  6. #5
    Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England
    Posts
    95
    Thanks
    9
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
    Thanks - I wondered how you got data for 19,000 photos into your database!

    I have just done another experiment, this time under carefully controlled conditions. In this case, Picasa performed as expected: I uploaded 4 photos from client A; I viewed them in client B, then deleted one and rotated another while still in client B; I closed Picasa in client B and reopened and the changes persisted; I closed Picasa in client B and opened in client A - the changes were still visible.

    I am not sure what happened in my earlier problems, where changes made in client B did not persist. My best guess is that my wife, who did the editing and is not terribly IT literate, did something that I did not anticipate.

    I intend to continue with Picasa for the time being, as you recommended, but keep an eagle eye on what is happening on each edit session to be sure the problems do not recur. If you find a good alternative, given that Picasa is discontinued, I would appreciate you letting me/us know. In the meantime, I have also taken note of the other software you use for more complex tasks.

    Many thanks for your help.

    Chris

  7. #6
    WS Lounge VIP mrjimphelps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    3,873
    Thanks
    507
    Thanked 461 Times in 430 Posts
    If one of your computers is always on, perhaps you could map a drive from that computer to the NAS, and then share that mapping to the other computers. Then perhaps Picasso could look to the drive mapping on that computer, rather than directly to the NAS.

  8. #7
    Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England
    Posts
    95
    Thanks
    9
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
    I'm not sure that would help, because the issue with Picasa and a NAS derives from the fact the photos and the database are on different computers, and Picasa assumes they are on the same one. The PicasaStarter add-on is designed to work around that constraint. In any case, only the NAS is always on, which is one reason why I use it for the photos.

    Actually, I have a sneaking suspicion I know why the changes appeared not to persist in the first instance (some months ago) and, if I am right, I can fix that quite easily.

    Cheers

  9. #8
    WS Lounge VIP
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    8,911
    Thanks
    63
    Thanked 1,115 Times in 1,037 Posts
    Picasa writes folder and picture tag info to an ini file in the folder.

    cheers, Paul

  10. #9
    Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England
    Posts
    95
    Thanks
    9
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
    Paul

    Those ini files, unfortunately, are not the end of it because Picasa also has a database file that it stores on the C drive. The guy who wrote PicasaStarter has a useful introduction to the limitations of Picasa here:

    https://www.sites.google.com/site/picasastartersite/

    The problem he describes caused me to screw up my database originally, which is why I moved to his add-on, which I can recommend.

    Cheers

    Chris

  11. The Following User Says Thank You to chris b For This Useful Post:

    Paul T (2017-03-13)

  12. #10
    WS Lounge VIP mrjimphelps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    3,873
    Thanks
    507
    Thanked 461 Times in 430 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by chris b View Post
    I'm not sure that would help, because the issue with Picasa and a NAS derives from the fact the photos and the database are on different computers, and Picasa assumes they are on the same one. The PicasaStarter add-on is designed to work around that constraint. In any case, only the NAS is always on, which is one reason why I use it for the photos.

    Actually, I have a sneaking suspicion I know why the changes appeared not to persist in the first instance (some months ago) and, if I am right, I can fix that quite easily.

    Cheers
    Try mapping a drive letter to a folder on the NAS. (That is, if you haven't already done that.) My thought is, if you can give Picasso a local drive letter to save to, and that drive letter just happens to be pointed at the NAS, it might work, because Picasso might think of it as a local storage resource. The SUBST command may accomplish this for you.

    My thought process wasn't clear when I described this before.

  13. #11
    Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England
    Posts
    95
    Thanks
    9
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
    Quote Originally Posted by mrjimphelps View Post
    Try mapping a drive letter to a folder on the NAS. (That is, if you haven't already done that.) My thought is, if you can give Picasso a local drive letter to save to, and that drive letter just happens to be pointed at the NAS, it might work, because Picasso might think of it as a local storage resource. The SUBST command may accomplish this for you.

    My thought process wasn't clear when I described this before.
    That is exactly how I have been running Picasa.

    Chris

  14. #12
    WS Lounge VIP access-mdb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Oxfordshire, UK
    Posts
    2,024
    Thanks
    162
    Thanked 188 Times in 181 Posts
    For information you can delete the Picasa database should you think it corrupted. I've done it once as I had moved a number of files when it was not running and that caused a few problems.
    What do you mean nothing is impossible? I've been doing nothing for years.

  15. #13
    Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England
    Posts
    95
    Thanks
    9
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
    Thanks for the pointer. I have just made quite a lot of changes to my file structure to clean it up, using Windows Explorer, while Picasa was closed. Picasa did a rescan and picked up all the changes without a problem.

  16. #14
    WS Lounge VIP access-mdb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Oxfordshire, UK
    Posts
    2,024
    Thanks
    162
    Thanked 188 Times in 181 Posts
    Glad you got it sorted. I will post if ever I find a better app than Picasa (or even one like it). I trust you will should you find one! I just wish Google would release the code to the Open Source community!
    What do you mean nothing is impossible? I've been doing nothing for years.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •