Lost Photos After macOS Mojave Update, How-To Fix

2018-08-09 05:52:39 / Posted by Rosa Reyes to Recover Follow @ Rosa

While updating Mac to the most recent macOS Mojave, many users end up losing their Photo files. If you also lost photos after macOS Mojave update, don’t panic as this is a common occurrence. Here in this post, we will show how to recover files that are Missing after macOS Mojave update.

Fix Missing Photo Files After Mac Update - The Quick Fix

When updating to a new system, many people will select "Update All" in the App Store. This will also help you pick up updating Photos. iPhoto/Photos application itself does not contain any picture, as it stored Photos in pictures folder. Which should be located at Macintosh HD>Users>Home>Pictures. Just find that folder and Press Cmd+I to see how big the file is. If there are many gigabytes there then the photos weren't lost, you have a great chance to find all your photos here.

Recover Lost Photos via Library First Aid

Photos library is the database where all photo files, thumbnails, metadata info, etc. stored. If you find the library folder but see no photos in it, then it may gets corrupted. In this case you can use “Library First Aid” to recover lost photos after Mac Mojave update.

Library First Aid is the build in feature of Photos/iPhoto. It is the most direct way to resolve issues such as the library appearing to be unreadable; missing photos after Mac update, etc.

Before using Library First Aid, it's always a good idea to backup your hard drive first!! using either Time Machine or another method. If you're not using Time Machine to backup your system, PLEASE DO!!!

Depending on what is wrong with your Photos library, you may need to wait a few minutes or several hours for Photos to fix. In my case, while doing Library First Aid I can still use my Mac though it is a little sluggish during the process.

Now, lets start recover photos disappeared from mac using Library First Aid.

1. First, turn on Photo’s “First Aid” mode. Before opening Photos app, Press and hold the Option and Command keys on your keyboard. Then launch Photos (need to press the two keys at the same time).

2. In a few seconds, you will see a window like below:

See, it list a quartet of options: “Repair Permissions,” “Rebuild Thumbnails,” “Repair Database,” and “Rebuild Database.”

Repair Permissions

This is probably the best option to start with. If your lost photos after updating to macOS Mojave, Repair permission may fixes this problem. And, in my case, my lost Photos came back to life after the “Repair Database” step.

Rebuild Thumbnails

If the only problem you have is thumbnail images disappearing or damaged. You can use this to get back those images again.

Repair Database

If your photos stored in another folder, or corrupted. You can choose this option to repair your Photos library accordingly.

Rebuild Database

If nothing else works, use this option. It may take a long time as it will completely rebuilds your database, overwriting the existing one.

Restore Lost Photos After Update With Time Machine Backup

If the above two ways didn’t bring the photos your lost during the Mac Mojave update. you can also restore photos from time machine backup if it has been set before macOS Mojave upgrade.

Steps to recover lost photos after macOS Mojave update with Time Machine

  • 1. If Photos is open, choose Photos > Quit Photos.
  • 2. Click Apple menu, choose System Preferences and then click on Time Machine.
  • 3. In the Time Machine menu, select Enter Time Machine, and it will take you to Time Machine on Mac.
  • 4. Time Machine will show your all available backups. Click the date of your last backup and select the lost photos that you want to restore and you can also press the space bar to preview the photo.
  • 5. Click Restore button and the image file will be restored to the original location on Mac.
  • 6. Depending on the size of your file, it may take some time for your library to be restored.

How to Get back Lost Photos After Mojave Update Without A Backup

What If you have tried all the above methods, and still can't find your missing photo files after mac update. Or, you just don’t have a Time Machine backup. In this case, use a third-party photo recovery software might be your last resort. There are widely available utilities out there, here are a great program which worth giving a shot.

Cisdem Photo Recovery for Mac — best for recovering lost images, videos, and songs from both the internal Mac hard drive and external storage devices. If your pictures missing after upgrade to Mojave in the absence of a time machine backup, you could recover them using this software. Download the free trial of Cisdem Photo Recovery on your Mac and follow the steps below to see how this software recover missing photos on Mac.

Free Download

Steps of recovering lost photos after upgrading to Mojave

  • Step 1. Free download, install and Launch Cisdem Photo Recovery Mac.
  • Step 2. Choose a recovery mode that suites your needs, here we choose basic data recovery to get the lost photos we need. choose a mode
  • Step 3. Select the drive from where you want to recover lost or deleted photos after macOS Mojave update and click Scan button at the top right.
    choose a disk
  • Step 4. Cisdem Photo Recovery for Mac will start scanning for the recoverable files, and sort it by file types, Meanwhile, the scanning results will be presented in the right panel in real time. found files
  • Step 5. Preview the scanning results, choose photos we want to recover, and then click "Recover". recover files by cisdem

With this, the procedure to recover lost images after upgrading Mac OS X to Mojave is completed successfully.

Final Words

Photos sometimes mean the whole world to us, we just can't afford to lose them. But chances are that they can be deleted or missing during the process of Mac upgrading. So, It is recommended backing up the entire Mac drive before upgrading the OS X.

Once data loss occurs, just stay calm, and follow the above method one by one, if all fails you can still get your files back with a Mac photo recovery software or service.

Anyway, if you manage to get back your files, be sure to back up them to multiple devices or using cloud service such as Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.

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