When it comes to Linux applications, at times there are so many choices and alternatives. But sometimes there are only a few options.
One of our readers had requested to make a list of decent Linux photo management software. Something that could replace now defunct Picasa on Linux.
Turns out, though not many, there are some really good applications for managing photo libraries available out there. Either you have a huge collection of photos or only a few of them, one of these options ought to suit your needs.
This list of best photo management applications for Linux is different from our earlier list of best photo applications for Linux. That list contained image related applications for various purposes such as editing, painting etc., while this list deals with only photo managing applications.
So, here we go. I’ve also included the installation commands of these applications for Ubuntu and its derivatives. All you need to do is open a terminal and run those.
gThumb is a lightweight photo management application built mainly for GNOME desktop environment. It includes all the basic photo management features as well as some editing and advance operations. Some of the main features of gThumb are:
- Image Viewer: Supports all the major image format (including GIF) and metadata (EXIF, XMP etc).
- Image Browser: All the basic browsing operations (thumbnails, move, copy, delete etc) and bookmarking support.
- Image Organizer: Organize photos with tags, catalogs and Libraries. Importing photos from Digital Cameras. Web albums (Picasa, Flickr, Facebook etc) integration.
- Image Editor: Basic photo editing operations, filters, format conversion etc.
And there’s much more, check the official gThumb feature list. If you use GNOME or GNOME based desktop environments (like MATE) you should definitely try this one out.
sudo apt-get install gthumb
digiKam is mainly developed for KDE, but works just as well on other desktop environments. It comes with a lot of features with an interface that works nicely. The main features of digiKam includes:
- Photo Organizer: Albums, sub-albums, tags, comments, metadata, sorting support.
- Photo Importer: Import support from Digital Cameras, USB devices, Web Albums (including Picasa & Facebook) and some other features.
- Photo Exporter: Export support for various online platforms and format conversion.
- Photo Editor: Wide range of photo editing operations.
digiKam is certainly one of the best Linux photo management software, if not best.
sudo apt-get install digikam
Shotwell photo manager is also for GNOME desktop environment. Shotwell, while isn’t as feature-rich as gThumb, does what it promises. The main features of Shotwell are:
- Import photos from Disks or Digital Cameras.
- Event, tags and folder based organization.
- Basic photo editing features and format conversion.
- Supports uploading to web services (Facebook, Flickr, Tumblr etc).
If you want something simple, you can check this one out.
sudo apt-get install shotwell
KPhotoAlbum is a photo management application also intended to be used on KDE desktop environment. What makes KPhotoAlbum unique is its categorization process and time-based browsing. You can categorize photos by People, Places, Events etc. And for time-based browsing, it has a dedicated timeline or Date Bar at the bottom of the user interface.
KPhotoAlbum comes with a wide range of features for photo management and editing. Some of the main features include:
- Advance photo organization (with categories, sub-categories, tags, metadata, annotation support and much more).
- Wide range of import and export options (including almost every major photo sharing platforms).
- Various editing options (includes batch operations).
All these advanced organization features do have their downsides – user has to do most of them manually. But if you’re a KDE lover, this can be a good pick. You can use KPhotoAlbum on other desktop environments too, but it delivers the optimal experience on KDE.
sudo apt-get install kphotoalbum
Darktable is more of a photo editing application than an organizer. Darktable stands out for its own user interface regardless of the desktop environment you might be using, and of course for its editing capabilities. The basic features include:
- Basic photo organization.
- Advance and feature-rich photo editing.
- Export support for Picasa & Flickr and format conversion.
If you’re into photo editing and retouching, Darktable is a nice choice.
Reading Suggestion: How to install Darktable 2.0 in Ubuntu via PPA
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:pmjdebruijn/darktable-release
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install darktable
If you want a simple application for pulling images from your portable devices (cameras, phones, portable drives etc) and storing them on your Hard Disk, using Rapid Photo Downloader is a no-brainer. It is an incredible application for importing and backing up photos from portable devices. The installation and configuration process is quite easy and simple.
For installing Rapid Photo Downloader on Ubuntu, fire up a terminal and run this command:
sudo apt-get install rapid-photo-downloader
If you are still interested in trying a few more options, here you go:
- GNOME Photos (Photo viewer for GNOME desktop environment)
- Gwenview (Photo viewer for KDE desktop environment)
- Picty (Open-source photo collection manager)
So, are you using, or plan to use, any one of these applications? Which, according to you is the best photo management application for Ubuntu or any other Linux? Do you have any favorites to term as Linux photo manager? Do share your views.