Preserving dates when exporting photos and videos from iPhoto

less than 1 minute read

I'm preparing my photo library ready for the release of Photos for Mac or some, as yet unnamed, replacement for the alarmingly slow iPhoto. Hat tip to Gabe Macdrifter for this excellent article on how to use Hazel to sort files by year and month.

Exporting photos as originals works because iPhoto preserves date, location etc. but it doesn't do this for movies. Annoying.

After deleting ~1000 videos with a created date of today, I used this command from my Time Machine backup of my iPhoto Library:

`sudo find -E . -regex '.*\.(MOV|MPG|MP4|3gp|3GP|avi|mp4|mov|mpg)' -print0 | rsync -avt --files-from=- --from0 ./ /Users/myuser/Downloads/movies`

This command:

  • searches for all movies files within the Masters folder in my iPhoto Library directory
  • uses rsync to copy copy the movies to my local disk whilst preserving dates (that's the t option)

Hazel can now process these files and move them into the same structure as the my photos.