Hi Alice –

Probably. iPhoto stores its Library as a single folder, the contents of which comprise all the database & picture files iPhoto needs to efficiently manage your photos. By default iPhoto stores its Library inside the Pictures folder of the home folder of the currently logged in user. iPhoto doesn’t actually care where it’s stored, however, and only looks in this location if it either can’t find another Library, doesn’t know about another Library or it’s being opened for the first time.

If you have copied your Library to an external hard drive, then there are really only two reasons why iPhoto wouldn’t be able to access it: 1) The external hard drive is not being mounted on the iMac because it is either not connected or not functioning properly. 2) iPhoto forgot that the Library was on the external hard drive. This can sometimes happen if you open iPhoto BEFORE the hard drive has been mounted on the iMac or if the external drive is simply turned off.

We can quickly rule out #1 if you can see the external hard drive mounted on your Desktop. Do you? If you do not, then make sure the external drive is connected properly & reboot the iMac if necessary. If you do, which I presume you do, then we can tackle #2 by doing the following:

Hold down the ‘option’ key while starting iPhoto. iPhoto will prompt you to either ‘Choose’ an existing Library or ‘Create’ a new one. Click ‘Choose’. Now browse to your external hard drive using the Finder window & then find the iPhoto folder you copied or created on there previously. Then hit ‘OK’. This forces iPhoto to use that Library & iPhoto should now continue to use it, provided that there isn’t another interruption between the iMac and the external hard drive.

Hope that helps – please let us know if it doesn’t work & we can investigate as to why.


hunter greene Brainspiral Technologies, Inc. hunter@brainspiral.com http://brainspiral.com w: 413-458-5755 c: 413-281-4918

On May 24, 2009, at 9:30 AM, help@brainspiral.com wrote:

> a form has been submitted on May 24, 2009, via: http://brainspiral.com/contact/ > [IP] > Contact Us > Name Alice > Message Hello, you did some work on our Imac not too long ago. We > have a new problem. We have our iphoto library on an external > harddrive, and all was well until about a month ago when the iphoto > program can’t find the library anymore. We’ve spent many hours on it > and can’t seem to get it reconnected. Can you help? Thanks. Alice