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Ashik, Mac Technician
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 12004
Experience:  Bachelor of Computer Application (BCA), 9+ Years of Experience in troubleshooting Macs, iPhone, iPad, iPod etc
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I have a library of photos in iPhoto 7.1.5 on a Mac running

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I have a library of photos in iPhoto 7.1.5 on a Mac running OS X 10.6.8. I need to extract these photos before cleaning the Mac hard drive to pass the Mac on to a new home. I then need to install the photos onto my present Mac which runs el Capitan, OS X 10.11.6 which, as I understand, is not compatible with iPhoto. Am I right in this? Is there a solution please?
Jim Garfath

Hi and Welcome. My Name is ***** ***** I look forward to assisting you today with your question.

iPhoto Library is compatible with the Photos app of El Capitan. All you have to do is, just open that iPhoto Library in Photos and Photos will migrate that library to it.

On your old Mac, go to Macintosh HD > Users > home folder > Pictures folder and you will see the iPhoto Library there. Copy it to your new Mac's pictures folder (using an external hard drive or direct connection).

Then hold down Option key and open Photos. Select Choose Library and locate and select the iPhoto Library you copied. Photos will start to migrate the library to it.

If you get any error that the iPhoto Library is too old to work with Photos, then you need to upgrade it using Library Upgrader. Follow the instructions in this article -->

Alternative solution :

You can also manually open the iPhoto Library in Finder and copy the Originals or Masters folder from that library to your new Mac's Photos. This Originals or Masters folder contains all the photos ever imported to iPhoto Library. To do that, go to your Pictures Folder and find the iPhoto Library there. Right (or Control-) Click on the icon and select 'Show PackageContents'. Cope the Masters or Originals folder to your new Mac and import that folder to Photos app.

Note : Only clean the older Mac after successfully transferred all photos to the Photos app of new Mac.

If you have any difficulty on following the steps above, please let me know and I will walk you through it

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Ashik - Thanks for your reply. I'm copying to an external drive now.

Hi Jim, You're welcome. Since your iPhoto's version is 7, you may need to use iPhoto Library Upgrader after copying to new Mac. Download it from here -->

Make sure you put it to the Pictures folder of your new Mac.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Another idea. The iPhoto library is 15 gigs. We have loads of spare capacity in iCloud. Would it be possible, would it make sense, to send the library from the external drive direct to iCloud thus saving computer space and enabling us to dip into the library from computer and from iPad? Stupid question no doubt .......Jim

Jim, that is not a stupid question. It is a great idea to free up some space on computer. But you can't directly send it to iCloud from external hard drive. You need to import or load that library to Photos first, then go to System Preferences > iCloud and enable Photos and then iCloud Photo Library

This will upload a copy of the entire library to iCloud (will take a few hours to do a full upload), but also a copy of the library will stay on Mac. So to save space, you can enable the Optimize Storage which will put only a low resolution photo on Mac, but high quality will be saved on iCloud and can be downloaded anytime from Photos (high quality photos will be opened from iCloud when you open photos). To optimize storage, follow the steps below;

  1. Open the Photos app and click Photos in the menu bar.
  2. Click Preferences.
  3. Go to the iCloud tab and choose a storage setting - Use Optimized Storage settings. This will save significant storage space.on Mac by saving high quality one directly on iCloud.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi again Ashik - Thanks for that. Looks like a wonderfully thorough and foolproof answer. I'll go through the process this evening and will report back. Sounds like it will take several hours so I guess I'll catch you on your next working day. Have a good weekend!Jim

You're most welcome Jim. If you face any difficulty, please let me know and I will continue to help you.

Best Regards,


Hi Jim, I'm just checking. How is it going ?

Ashik and 2 other Mac Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Ashik - My library is now safely in photos on the new Mac, also backed up on an external drive. Getting it into iCloud is not proving so easy. It's desperately slow and I can't find any way to monitor whether uploading is happening at all.Anyway, thanks for your help with my primary question. I've rated you excellent so you can get paid.Best wishesJim

Hi Jim, Thank you for the excellent rating and glad you got it working on Photos. For it to upload to iCloud, it will take hours or days if you have large library and slow internet connection. So if you turned on iCloud Photo Library, then you have to leave Photos open (best to do at night and it will be done in morning or so). You can see the uploaded photos from

It is usually done in background, so you may not see any progress bar.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask.

Best Regards,