Thursday, October 31, 2019

Aperture to - preparation (And CYME's Avalanche)

Original 10/31/2019

I despise Apple in general and Tim Cook in particular. I wasn’t always that way. In the 00s I was kind of fond of Apple.  That ended with the way Cook killed Aperture in 2014. Apple could have provided an exit, but they didn’t.

Being unable to leave Apple has not improved my mood over the past six years. The exit cost is too high. On the bright side my Apple resentment has made it easier to resist the Apple watch. So I have a bit more time in my life for family, bikes, skis, and CrossFit. Thanks Tim!

I’ll still be on Aperture into 2020, three years beyond my original plan. The Catalina catastrophe has made staying on Mojave more agreeable. I’ll have to switch sooner or later though, almost certainly by 2021. So I’m working on a list of what I need to do prepare. I’ll update this post with items I think about:
  1. Eliminate all stacks. I have hundreds of unwanted stacks created by Apple’s original hacked up iPhoto to Aperture migration (that was horrible). I need to edit each of the stacked images and remove the duplicate.
  2. Flatten the keyword hierarchy (the marvelous hierarchy is from a time when giants walked the earth).
  3. Regenerate images from RAW (this will take eons and is high risk).
  4. Be sure image locations and face recognition (never worked) are turned off.
  5. Simplify all smart albums not supported by
  6. Create an empty shell of current Library, then use that to import all images from past Library. Confirm everything is correct.
  7. Rebuild database to confirm no errors.
  8. Per Apple’s migration directions, create full-sized “previews”.
  9. Ensure iCloud is empty of images and that destination library is empty with no iCloud sync. Disconnect from network.
  10. Import into
  11. Validate.
This project will take many months, many backups, and purchase of at least one other 1TB SSD.

Update 2/17/2020: Avalanche claims ability to migrate from Aperture to Lightroom (Mojave and up). I'm looking for reviews.

Update 1/9/2022: Still on Aperture! Reviewing this post I decided to copy Apple's directions for migrating to Photos. (For older photos consider reprocessing before generating previews.)
Choose Aperture > Preferences, click the Previews tab, then change the Photo Preview setting to Don't Limit. Close the preferences window.
From the list of projects in the Library inspector, select all of your projects. For example, click the first project listed, then press and hold the Shift key while clicking the last project.
Click the Browser layout button in the toolbar, so that all photos are shown as thumbnails.
Choose Edit > Select All to select all of your photos.
Press and hold the Option key, then choose Photos > Generate Previews.
Aperture now generates full-size previews for every photo in your library. To follow its progress, choose Window > Show Activity from the menu bar. Quit Aperture when processing is complete.
Open the Photos app, then choose your Aperture library when prompted, as pictured above. If you aren't prompted to choose a library, press and hold the Option key while opening Photos. If your Aperture library isn’t listed, click Other Library, then locate and choose your library.

I tested CYME's Avalanche "export to file system". Unfortunately it doesn't export previews, only the master file. It's designed to translate Aperture's lossless edit directions to an alternative format, then have the receiving system generate the Previews.

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