MacMost Now 220: Uploading Photos From iPhoto 09 to Facebook

iPhoto 09 allows you to create albums that sync between iPhoto and your Facebook account. You can add more photos to an album later on, and receive tag information from your Facebook friends back in iPhoto.

Video Transcript
Hi. This is Gary with MacMost Now brought to you by SquareSpace. For a great way to build your own website, visit On this episode, let's take a look at the new feature on iPhoto that allows you to sync iPhoto with Facebook. So, a lot of us use Facebook to show off our pictures to our friends and you can go ahead and upload just about any photo up to Facebook and put it in an album now. But, the new iPhoto 09 got's great functionality to allow you to do all that from iPhoto. You can actually create these Facebook albums in iPhoto and they sync automatically with Facebook. Let's take a look. Ok, here we are in iPhoto. Now I'm gonna select a few photos that I want to upload to Facebook. Trying to pick some out. And now I'm gonna go to share, Facebook. Now the first time you do this, it's gonna ask for your Facebook credentials and this will link iPhoto to Facebook. Once you do that, every time you do it you'll just come up with this simple dialogue box. It asks you just if you want the photos viewable by everybody, your friends, or friends of friends as well. You can also change accounts if you have multiple Facebook accounts. And then you just hit Publish. Now what'll happen here is it's gonna create this little mini album and stick it on the left side under Facebook and it's gonna give it a name, in this case the name of the date of these photos. I'm gonna go and right away change that to something else like MacMost Photos. And you'll see a little spinner to the right that tells you it's uploading and once it's uploading you'll see a little Transmit button to tell you that basically it's syncing with Facebook. Now also at the top of this when you have it selected on the left, you'll see a link directly to that album in Facebook. So you click on that and it'll launch your browser and if you are already logged into Facebook, it will take you right to that album and here you go. You'll see those three photos all in that Facebook album. And you can also do all the other things you can normally do with Facebook albums. You can go ahead and edit these photos, change the descriptions for each one. You can go ahead and add more photos. Using another method, you can organize. You can edit info for the entire album and you can delete photos. Then when viewing the photos, you can also go ahead and click on one and go ahead and add tags. Now scroll down here and say I want to "Tag this Photo" and I can then select a face in the photo and go ahead and add a tag. Now, once this happens, it will actually sync back to iPhoto. Now I'm gonna go back into iPhoto and click on names. I actually see that I get that label there with the little Facebook symbol next to it showing that this tag came from Facebook. So this tag can actually come from somebody else labeling themselves or another person in your photos that comes back to you for approval. So you click on it to approve it or you can remove it. It's up to you what to do for the control of your tags in your iPhoto. And of course, you can also go back into Facebook and control the tags there as well. Now once you have an album that shared between iPhoto and Facebook, you can add more things to it very easily. So for instance, I can go back in and decide to go ahead and add another photo just by dragging that photo over to that item on the left sidebar. It will automatically add that to that album and upload it to Facebook. So you can basically create albums of say family photos, work photos, friends, that type of thing and just keep adding more photos to them as time goes on. So if you use Facebook and you use iPhoto, you've gotta use this feature. It's just such an easy way to maintain your photos at Facebook quickly, add new ones to them. And get tagging going back and forth between Facebook and iPhoto. Til next time this is Gary Rosenzweig with MacMost Now.

Comments: 71 Responses to “MacMost Now 220: Uploading Photos From iPhoto 09 to Facebook”

    4/18/09 @ 12:33 am

    Good video!

    One question though, it appears that you can’t share albums uploaded via iPhoto ’09 on your Facebook Wall – the uploaded albums just aren’t there to share when you click on the Photos app in Facebook. Do you know any way to do this?

      4/18/09 @ 9:24 am

      I certainly see that album in Facebook when I upload. Do you see them in Facebook at all?

    9/23/09 @ 4:24 am

    Hi, my iphoto was loading perfectly for the first few months. I’ve tried to upload the last album I have but while its telling me its uploading thumbnails and logging into facebook it doesn’t actually happen? the album wont upload? i’m doing the same thing as before, clicking on the facebook icon, and i’ve checked the settings on facebook but nothing is working? can anyone help? Sarah

      9/23/09 @ 6:23 am

      I’d try logging in and out of FB. Maybe try playing with your FB albums in the Web interface. Re-check your settings in iPhoto for your FB account. Try uploading a single photo, etc. Play around with it to see if you can figure out what the problem is. It could just be that FB was having problems — it WAS having problems this week.

      Norberto Morales
      12/31/09 @ 12:31 am

      Any anwer?

    11/26/09 @ 7:19 am

    its a good sharing but one thing is not good , we cannot upload videos from iphoto . please do something to make a real great stuff.

    1/2/10 @ 10:31 am

    when these photos get tagged in facebook, i cant see the same tags in iphoto, do i have to initiate this somehow?

      1/2/10 @ 10:53 am

      Make sure you set up your Facebook account inside of iPhoto. But you probably have already done this otherwise you wouldn’t be able to upload from iPhoto directly to Facebook. It may take a few minutes for the tags to appear. Play around with the settings for a bit and see f you can get it to work.

    1/14/10 @ 12:31 pm

    When I try to upload photos to facebook it comes up with a message saying ‘timed out’ I have uploaded photos successfully before but now i’m using firefox as opposed to safari, friends have said this shouldn’t make a difference but can you help?

      1/14/10 @ 12:40 pm

      I would just wait and try again later. Facebook isn’t the most consistent when it comes to access.

    elizabeth Eubanks
    1/31/10 @ 11:11 pm

    Right now I hate the 09 Iphoto.
    When I upload my photos to Facebook I want to delete them from my IPHOTO account.. and keep them on FB, but it deletes them as soon as I do.
    What’s the point???
    HELP! Thanks

      1/31/10 @ 11:16 pm

      The idea is that they are in sync. That FB album is in sync with your iPhoto collection. Why would you want to delete them from your iPhoto library, though? That’s like having two copies of a printed photo, lending one to your friend, and then ripping up the one you kept.

        elizabeth Eubanks
        1/31/10 @ 11:18 pm

        I want to get rid of them, bc I do NOT have enough hard drive- so I save special photos on an external. Also for instance I just took some photos for a friend of her baby shower- I wanted her to be able to get the album anytime, but I do not especially want to keep those photos.. it was sort of my gift to her…
        So what can I do? Please help

          1/31/10 @ 11:20 pm

          You need to upload photos like that to FB independent of iPhoto then. Maybe also burn a CD for her so she has the original high-res photos to keep.

      elizabeth Eubanks
      1/31/10 @ 11:16 pm

      PLUS.. one more thing.. every time I change one thing to the album on IPHOTO- it changes everything and I loose all of my tags! UGG
      How can I just do it the normal way again.. FB wont let me now!

        1/31/10 @ 11:17 pm

        You definitely can do it the old way. Just export your photos from iPhoto and upload them via the Web interface of FB. Just do it in a new album, not the one you created with iPhoto.

    elizabeth Eubanks
    1/31/10 @ 11:19 pm

    ok thanks .. I will try this!

    3/15/10 @ 7:43 am

    How can I upload my edited photos from iPhoto to facebook etc? Whenever I try it always uploads the orginal!

      3/15/10 @ 7:58 am

      I would just export them from iPhoto. Then, upload via the standard Facebook interface on the Web. You have much more control over them that way anyway.

    Fr. Gregory
    5/18/10 @ 12:54 pm

    I’ve been a happy user of the iPhoto uploader to Facebook for months. I just clicked in the bottom right hand corner and it published my album. Now, suddenly, when I click the Facebook icon, the box that comes up has “Publish” greyed out. I’ve tried all the different privacy settings it offers and “Publish” remains greyed out. I’ve tried uploading different albums, single photos, etc. and no luck. I’ve uninstalled and reinstalled the Uploader app. I’ve checked all my privacy settings (which I had recently played around with before this happened) and returned everything to its previous position. I’m out of ideas. Anyone else had this problem? Thank you!

      5/18/10 @ 1:30 pm

      So, it sounds like you are talking about a third-party add-on to iPhoto, not the built-in Facebook sync, right? If so, why not just switch to using iPhoto’s built-in feature?
      Otherwise, does this software have any support? The developer would be the place to go to get support.

      12/20/11 @ 1:04 pm

      Hi, I’ve been getting this same problem, did you manage to fix it?

      4/8/12 @ 3:23 pm

      I have the same problem, the facebook icon is grayed out. I have uploaded the latest adobe and safari, but no luck. Any suggestions?

    6/28/10 @ 2:36 pm

    I did reset my email add 3 time so i want 2 use my email dat am using 2 upload my pic on facebook

    7/9/10 @ 7:46 pm

    Hey when i upload from iphoto the pictures turn out smaller than they should. whats the deal?

      7/9/10 @ 8:19 pm

      Do you mean they are compressed and a smaller dimension? That makes sense. No need to upload huge high-res photos for viewing in Facebook.
      I guess if you want you could use the Facebook web interface to upload the original. But Facebook may have restrictions on the image size, or it might compress them or shrink them that way as well.
      Experiment and see what happens with different methods.

    8/18/10 @ 8:05 am

    With my old version of iPhoto, I used to be able to attach single pictures into emails by choosing “attach” and then navigating through my Pictures folder and into my iPhoto folder where I could then choose a single picture. Is there a way to do this with the new iPhoto? I have no way of being able to access my iPhoto pictures without exporting them from iPhoto itself to only a select few places or dragging them to my desktop to save as a separate .jpg that I can access. It has annoyed me since I’ve upgraded to iPhoto ’09.
    I appreciate the help.

      8/18/10 @ 8:19 am

      You are missing a big new feature of Snow Leopard, then. Click Attach. Then, in the file dialog that appears look in the left sidebar. It looks like the Finder sidebar, with Devices, Shared, Places, but at the bottom there is “Media” — select Photos. Then the rest of the window turns into a media browser with access to your iPhoto events, albums, photos, etc. You can even search your photos.

      9/5/10 @ 7:43 am

      I had the same problem. When the window appeared that had the “Publish” botton grayed out, I clicked the “change account” button and re-entered my Facebook password. Once this was done, the “publish” button was no longer grayed out.

    9/26/10 @ 11:25 pm

    Can you upload a photo from Iphoto straight into your FB photos, without it going on your wall &/or newsfeed?

      9/27/10 @ 5:45 am

      I’m pretty sure that’s how it works. It is just syncing between iPhoto and your FB album. But as to whether a message gets sent to your wall that you added more photos — I’m not sure if/how you can change how that works. If so, it is probably on the FB side.

    9/27/10 @ 9:54 am

    Thanks for getting back to me Gary! …and btw I’m glad I found this thread again- b/c in your search box, I wrote “iphoto facebook sep” as the key words in order to find this again- couple previous attempts at locating it didn’t work, but i guess i didn’t have the right key words. I really like your helpful site here, and so I have a suggestion to help us “laypeople” out even further: how about an automatic email sent to us when we get a reply, with the link? that would be helpful. (you do require it of us when we post a question.)
    And Thanks again for the answer!

      9/27/10 @ 10:06 am

      I’d love to do that. I’ve thought about it a lot. The problem is that there is no good way to do it without requiring everyone to have a user account with login name and password, etc. I could use the email address you provide when filling in the comment form, but that is open to abuse. You could put any email address in there, and then when the email is sent it goes to someone else and they complain about spam and the next thing you know is blacklisted. You can see the problem…

        9/29/10 @ 10:59 pm

        ok, i see. thanks for explaining.

    9/30/10 @ 1:30 pm

    now i’m trying to upload a photo and have it only visible to myself or just certain friends- ie normally, when in FB, i would click on “customization” however, in IPhoto, once I have the picture clicked, and then hit the FB button, it doesn’t give me the “customization” option at all: only 3 options for publishing to FB: Everyone, Friends of Friends, and Friends only. Do you know a way to publish only visible to oneself or certain friends…? (This is an FB question, i suppose. and in that case, they aren’t giving the option currently at least thru iphoto.) thanks for any help.

      9/30/10 @ 1:32 pm

      For functionality like that, I would just use the FB web interface. Uploading from iPhoto is meant to keep things quick and easy.

    11/3/10 @ 4:40 pm

    Can I set up iPhoto to sync with more than one Facebook account?

      11/3/10 @ 5:12 pm

      Yes, it appears that you can, but in iPhoto 11. There you can add accounts: email, Facebook, Flickr, etc. I tried adding a second Facebook account and it seemed to let me do so.

        11/4/10 @ 6:17 pm

        OK, just found it: Preferences -> Accounts -> hit the plus sign

        Michelle Perrow
        4/17/11 @ 8:43 pm

        what about with IPhoto9?????

          4/17/11 @ 8:50 pm

          The Facebook account sync function is new in iPhoto 11. I think maybe there was a less functional Facebook “upload” function in the Share menu somewhere. But if you want this functionality, why not update?

    11/21/10 @ 7:20 pm

    once a facebook user is added and the photos are uploaded, how do you switch the facebook users. I did this at a friends house and we uploaded them to my facebook and now it has uploaded all of my fb albums to her iphoto and keeps logging into my facebook. I tried changing my password but it still won’t let the owner of the iphoto we used, log into her facebook to upload photos. help please!

      11/21/10 @ 7:26 pm

      You need to remove those account from your iPhoto accounts list.

    12/9/10 @ 7:41 pm

    every time my wife is on facebook to upload photo’s from iphoto she has a problem.The problem is once she chooses iphoto it comes up magnified and frozen,what can be causing this?

      12/9/10 @ 8:08 pm

      Hard to tell without seeing it firsthand. Consider a trip to the Genius Bar so someone can see what you are seeing.

    Gavin M
    4/26/11 @ 5:06 pm

    How do you change your email address within iphoto9? There is no account tab in preferences. Thanks

      4/26/11 @ 6:16 pm

      I don’t believe there is any email address used in iPhoto. When you send a photo as an email, it simply creates a new message in the Mail application.

        Gavin M
        4/26/11 @ 11:04 pm

        Hi Gary, Thanks for your reply. I should have been more specific. It is when I try and upload to facebook. My old email address keeps coming up and I cant see anywhere to change it. Thanks Gavin

          4/27/11 @ 6:42 am

          Oh, so you mean your Facebook ID. When you go to Share, Facebook, can’t you just change it before submitting? I don’t have iPhoto 09 readily available (all upgraded to iPhoto 11) so it is not easy for me to check.

    7/25/11 @ 3:01 pm

    HI Gary, I’m not sure if you are still maintaining this blog/site but I hope so. It seems like you know about the FB and iPhoto link. After I go through my photos in iPhoto and tag them (faces and keywords), is there a way to ‘lock it down’? When I publish these to my fb page, I have friends that re-tag based on who has a fb pages (not actually names) so if I have a friends baby tagged with her name they will re-tag with the mother’s name (not what I want to have) and it will sometimes overwrite and sometimes not. Can I lock down the re-tagging?
    Thanks, ,

      7/25/11 @ 3:26 pm

      Been uploading three videos per week, including this morning. So, yes. I’m still here :)
      Not sure. I’m not a FB expert (use it normally, just like most people). I’d look through the FB settings on the web site to see if you can turn off tagging of your photos or something.

    Eric Walter
    8/1/11 @ 10:24 am

    Hi please help me with this infuriating problem. I want to change my facebook profile pic to a photo in iphoto. So I go to my profile page, move the browser over the current profile pic and “change picture” appears on the upper boarder. I click that, select upload file from iphoto, and my iphoto opens. I select the picture I want but I can’t access the “choose” button that is located in the lower right hand corner. it appears to be below the border of the screen and I can’t figure out how to make the screen smaller to access the button. When I move the cursor to the upper right corner of the screen, the iphoto screen shrinks and I can see the “choose” and “cancel” buttons, but I can’t click on them. I click and the screen gets bigger–moving the buttons outside the lower border where I can’t get to them. please help! Thanks!

      8/1/11 @ 10:27 am

      Just try it another way. Drag and drop the photo from iPhoto (run iPhoto, find it, drag and drop) to the Desktop. This makes a copy of the photo as a regular file. Now go back into Facebook in your browser and change your icon, simply use that file instead of going into iPhoto.

    9/29/11 @ 6:09 am

    Hi Gary,
    Great blog. Quick question-i have made three different albums in iphoto but everytime I go to publish the album to facebook it rearranges the pictures (which is very annoying). I want the pictures in the order I have them in the album…I don’t know why when i upload to facebook it moves them around? Any idea how to change that?

      9/29/11 @ 6:36 am

      Try creating the album, adding just one photo, then sharing. Then add the photos one by one and they should use that order.

    Edwin Blom
    10/2/11 @ 7:54 am

    Created a Flickr account through iPhoto, but iPhoto keeps asking to ‘set up’ an account, which I just did…
    And why sync photo’s? It’s called an flickr-iPhoto-uploader, not a ‘syncer’ In my opinion it is to much. I just want to simplify: that I not have to export from iPhoto first and than manually upload to flickr, but not sync stuff. I hate it when software take’s over.

    10/15/11 @ 11:33 pm

    I was just upgraded to iphoto 09 and snow leopard. I have downloaded the iphoto uploader. When i begin the process to share photos to Facebook, I get a message stating, “An error occurred with iphoto uploader”. I spent 2 hours with 2 experts at the Genius Bar today. They could not break this deadlock. They suggest an upgrade to iphoto ’11. Why can’t I sync between iphoto 09 and Facebook?

      10/16/11 @ 12:17 am

      Upgraded to iPhoto 09? Yes, 11 has been the current version for some time. And it has its own Facebook hooks.
      Have you tried contacting the developer of “iPhoto uploader” — it is their product so they should support it. Or, why not just use the standard Facebook photo sharing in the web interface. Things like “iPhoto uploaded” or even the hooks in iPhoto 11 are just conveniences. If they aren’t working for you, then use the standard way.

        10/16/11 @ 1:06 am

        Apple felt that Iphoto ’11 would be too slow on my 4 yr-old computer. Sorry but I don’t know what you mean by “using the standard Facebook photo sharing in the web interface” Please suggest how to get photos from iphoto to Facebook via this way. Thanks.

          10/16/11 @ 9:57 am

          I just mean logging into Facebook on the Web as you probably do normally. Then creating and uploading photos from there. You can choose any photo from your iPhoto library in a “choose file to upload” type of dialog you get when you select a photo to upload to the Internet. Or, you could drag and drop or export photos from iPhoto to a temporary location and upload those.

    10/26/11 @ 12:05 pm

    Every time I try to export photos from iPhoto 09 to FB it says “An error occurred with Facebook Exporter for iPhoto. Please try again later”. This has happened all morning and on another day (I have not been able to do so successfully yet). The only way I have found to get my photos on FB is to transfer them to my pictures file and then upload from there. Suggestions on how to fix so I can upload directly onto FB and not have photos in duplicate places on my computer? Thanks

      10/26/11 @ 12:30 pm

      Your work-around is probably the best way to go. Or, update to iPhoto 11 which has native Facebook integration.

    Andrew Soleimany
    1/3/12 @ 6:05 am

    Randomly viewing photos in iPhoto 9 (photos that have previously been uploaded to Facebook via iPhoto 9) results in republished or retagged photos on Facebook.

    Imagine vacation photos you published to FB from iPhoto 3 years ago suddenly showing up as brand new feeds on your FB page. Very Annoying. I suspect this is a bug, but if you know otherwise, please advise.

      1/3/12 @ 9:02 am

      Why are you using iPhoto 09? Upgrade to iPhoto 11. Perhaps this is a bug, and I know that iPhoto 11’s Facebook integration is very different.

    4/3/12 @ 11:27 am

    Gary, My iPhoto publish button for facebook is greyed out. When I try to log into my facebook account on iPhoto it says an error has occured with iphoto please try again later. I have looked at these posts and I have tried some of these things but nothing seems to work.

    5/24/12 @ 12:38 pm

    I have uploaded to 2 Facebook accounts successfully using iphoto 11 by adding both my & my husband’s accounts, But i encountered a problem if instead of using iphoto to upload the photos I logged in first to Facebook then used the upload photo button, I can access my iphoto library using my husband’s Facebook account but can’t access it using my own account, the iphoto library choice is grayed out, I prefer to upload from Facebook since it gives me more control over who sees my uploads. Was wondering maybe you know how to get around this without going through the hassle of copying the photos to desktop and so on. Mac OS X 10.7.3 iPhoto 11

      5/24/12 @ 1:08 pm

      Not sure. I think you’ve got that photo collection linked to iPhoto so you can’t edit it any other way. Try removing it from iPhoto and it might give you the option to keep the collection there — or may delete them, not sure.

    7/21/12 @ 7:45 am

    Hi, please help! All the while I thought uploading via iphoto to facebook is fun and easy! Never had I thought that it was after all a “syncing” of photos, not uploading until I deleted 1 or 2 albums in my iphoto to free my computer of hd space! The photos in my fb are all gone now and I have not kept copies anywhere else because I thought I have already “uploaded” the photos in fb that I and my friends can just access anytime! Iphoto should have not used the term UPLOAD/UPLOADING!
    Can anyone please advise how I can retrieve the deleted photos in my iphoto?

      7/21/12 @ 8:02 am

      Yes, it does seem you have misunderstood what that does. Facebook is not a place to store photos — I don’t even think the full resolution photo gets synced, just a lowres copy. If you use Time Machine, you can simply revert to an earlier version of your iPhoto Library. Think of your library as you would the actual photos back in the film days — keep it safe, back it up.

    8/19/12 @ 9:05 pm

    I am using iPhoto in uploading pics to my Facebook account but I noticed that I am missing a lot of my albums in my FB account after I deleted the pics from my there a way to avoid it? like keeping the FB albums despite the fact that Its no longer in my library?

      8/20/12 @ 7:12 am

      Right. You are syncing albums between FB and iPhoto. So deleting them in iPhoto removes them from FB. That’s unusual that you would want to delete photos from your library — usually people want to keep those forever, they don’t throw pictures away completely like that.
      But if you want to do it that way, just stop using iPhoto’s sync feature and instead upload to FB normally using their web interface.

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