Many files show falsely in the "missing" files window

Asked by JackVrouwes on 2011-11-25

This concerns Shotwell v. 0.11.4 under Ubuntu 11.10.

1.) I have about 4000 photos in SW. About 550 of these show up as "missing." However, I can normally display them from the SW sub-headers, and they do exist in the Ubuntu "Pictures" directory. How can I eliminate these false listing in "Missing" without eliminating the photos from SW?

2.) I re-imported some photographs from my flash drives before finding out about these false listings. The re-import and original show up in the "Pictures" directory as e.g. PICT0528_1.JPG and PICT0528.JPG respectively. Could I safely remove the dash-1 files from the directory in order to reduce its size?

3.) In conclusion, what must I do to make the "Missing" files feature track the database and the Pictures directory properly?

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Ubuntu shotwell Edit question
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Lucas Beeler (lucas-yorba) said : #1

Hi Jack,

Is your ~/Pictures directory mounted on a local volume or on a network share? What's more, have you looked at the file permissions for the files that are marked as "Missing?" Whatever user account you run Shotwell under should have read/write access to those files.


Thanks Lucas,

The ~/Pictures directory is mounted locally.

I have managed to reduce the "missing" files to 33 by importing from other files. However, these 33 are still falsely reported as "Missing" by SW. They are present in the ~/Pictures directory. Their permissions in that directory seem to be correct -- owner=read/write, group=read, others=read.

I have gone out from SW and then again returned. Still the same 33 files are reported as "missing." Does that mean that the database does not 'track' the ~/Pictures directory?


Adam Dingle (adam-yorba) said : #3


1. What directory is listed in the Library Location section in the Preferences dialog? If it's not your Pictures directory, you should change it to Pictures to cause Shotwell to look for missing photos there.

2. In Shotwell, choose the Missing view in the sidebar, then select any missing photo and choose View->Extended Information. This will show the file path where Shotwell last saw the photo. What path is displayed?

3. If you drag your Pictures directory from Nautilus to Shotwell, then Shotwell will reimport all photos in that directory, and if any of those photos were missing then Shotwell should remove them from the Missing view. You might first want to remove the duplicate photos whose names end in "_1", otherwise you will end up with duplicate photos in Shotwell.

Hi Adam:

1) The ~/Pictures directory is listed in preferences.

2) Most "missing" photos show in my ~/temp-dir-dated-in-shotwell directory. All these photos are old -- I imported them from a slide scanner, and I corrected the date in exif on them. So, I handled a lot of these in my file system. BTW, now there are 830 falsely listed missing photos!

In the mean time, I deleted these temporary files. However, the Photos are still in the ~/Pictures directory.

Question: Could I use "remove from library" without affecting the ~/Pictures directory for these "missing" files?

3) I will remove the duplicates in the ~/Pictures directory.

Thanks for your advice,

Adam Dingle (adam-yorba) said : #5


If the files in ~/Pictures are identical to the files that were in ~/temp-dir-dated-in-shotwell, then Shotwell should automatically find them when it starts up. But Shotwell doesn't seem to be doing that, so perhaps the files are not identical, maybe because you changed the EXIF date. So yes, I think you could use Remove From Library to eliminate the missing photos. If you can't seem to make everything right, you could always create a new Shotwell library and import everything again (though then you'll lose any edits you've made to photos within Shotwell).

Soren (soerendip) said : #6

I suggest a rigth-click-menu option "Search in library". In case you have 10000+ pictures you don't want SW to scan the entire library each time you start the program.

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