"so you can find your photos later."

What it is:

A photo database; a web based application for managing (storing, cataloging and retrieving) digital photos.

What it is NOT:

A system for putting up web galleries. This software is a storage system for your digital photos. There are lots of great software packages that export to HTML pages, etc. I may add that later, but for now – go check out some of the other packages and find one that fits your needs.

Who it’s for:

Anyone who is comfortable installing and configuring PHP & MySQL and wants to manage their digital photos.

What it costs:

This is donationware. You can download and use it for free with no obligation. If you end up using it a lot and find it useful please consider making a donation (~$25 or whatever you feel it is worth).

Why I built it:

When I started taking digital photos, I knew I wanted some sort of platform independant, web based or web enabled searchable management system for keeping track of them. One of the benefits of digital photography is the ability to take as many photos as you want since there are no film costs. The downside of that is you can quickly amass an unmanageable amount of photos unless you have some organization system to use. I wanted to be able to locate the photo I wanted without having to open a gazillion files.

When I looked for software to do this, I found a number of web based service sites, Windows only applications that were not web enabled, and a handful of Mac applications that did the same thing.

I eliminated all of the on-line services out of fear that they would dissapear and take my photos with them. This was also a bit of a fear with an application as well. If the company goes under, discontinued the product or I wanted to change to another platform I could be somewhat stuck.

Many of these applications involved importing all your photos into their database, not just referencing the files on the filesystem. Backing up such a large database is a real hassle.

Platform independance was important as a Mac user because I wanted to be able to run it locally on my computer and also on a hosted web server in the future. Having the option to run on Windows, Mac, Unix and Linux is just really convenient and keeps lots of options open for the future.

I imagine in the future, I’ll want to have access to this database over the internet. So going with something web based now just made sense.

So failing to find anything that met my criteria, I decided to try to build my own. After getting a number of features in and cleaning up the code, I decided to release it so other people can use it if they are looking for something similar.

You are free to modify, customize, upgrade the application as you see fit for your personal use. This and the fact that the information is stored in a standard database ensures that even if I stop supporting the app, you’re not left out in the cold.