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The 6 best photo management tools for Linux

Are you in need of a good photo management tool on Linux? Unsure what app to use? If so, we can help! Here are the six best photo management tools for Linux!

1. DigiKam

Are you a photographer looking to do some serious photo management on the Linux desktop? If so, look no further than digiKam.

What is DigiKam? It’s an advanced photo management utility for Linux. It’s written specifically for the KDE Plasma Desktop but works well on other environments quite nicely as well.

DigiKam comes with loads of useful features, and that’s why Linux photographers love it so much. Features include things such as built-in lightroom, EXIF editing, file-system sorting of photograph, built-in picture editing, and a useful and robust importing tool that can grab digital photos directly from cameras.

Notable Features

  • Digikam can handle a large library of digital photos. The developers claim it can easily manage over 100,000 images.
  • The app can process raw images, edit JPEG format photos, and publish to various social media sites.
  • With Digikam, users can easily and efficiently edit photo metadata.
  • Users can tag and organize photos based on tags and search for them at a later date.
  • Digikam can import photos from most cameras with ease.
  • The Digikam application organizes pictures in an optimized database/library system to ensure the user finds the images they want as quickly as possible.

Download – Digikam

Digikam is a KDE application, though it doesn’t come pre-installed. As a result, you’ll need to install it to use it. Check Pkgs.org and learn how to get it for your distro.

2. Shotwell

Shotwell has long been the default photo organizer on Linux distributions that sport a GTK-based desktop environment. It’s not hard to see why with its impressive organization features and built-in basic editing suite.

People love the Shotwell application because it has an easy to understand user interface. You don’t feel like you need to be an expert photographer to sort pictures and do quick edits on your computer.

While this app indeed isn’t the first “easy to use” photo organizer on the Linux desktop, it is one of the best that the community has to offer.

Notable Features

  • Shotwell supports importing from various devices via the “import” feature.
  • Photos in Shotwell are managed by the date they are taken.
  • Aside from managing the pictures on your computer, Shotwell also has basic editing features such as cropping, converting, enhancing, resizing, etc.
  • Shotwell supports both images and videos.
  • Users can tag and sort images based on keyword tags, events, folders, etc.
  • Shotwell supports sharing to social media websites.

Download – Shotwell

Shotwell may already be installed on your Linux PC. However, if you’ve checked and it turns out that it isn’t, you’ll be able to find information on how to install and set it up on Pkgs.org.

3. Gnome Photos

Gnome Photos, or “Photos” is the Gnome project’s answer to photo management and editing on Linux. The tool comes standard in Gnome Shell and all other desktops that rely on Gnome’s software.

Photos is great to use, especially if you’re looking for something with a modern UI. It’s fast, lightweight, and has many useful features, such as quick sharing and online integration.

In addition to photo organization, Gnome Photos also works as a picture viewer and can display images on the desktop quite well.

Notable Features

  • Gnome Photos comes with a built-in editing suite that can crop, change colors, add filters and enhance images.
  • Gnome Photos supports online sharing features and can connect with Gnome Shell’s “Online Accounts” feature.
  • The user interface is friendly and looks very modern.
  • The “Favorite” mode lets users quickly bookmark their favorite photographs.

Download – Gnome Photos

Gnome Photos is the default photo viewer and management tool for the Gnome Shell desktop environment, so you likely don’t need to install it if you’re using that setup.

Grab the latest version of Gnome Photos for your distribution by visiting Pkgs.org.

4. Picty

Picty is a photo management tool for the Linux desktop that organizes images based on the location of the files on your computer. It doesn’t create or maintain a database of any kind, but rather is a front-end to the pictures on your computer.

Notable Features

  • Picty’s import feature can recognize many types of DSLR cameras, such as Canon or Nikon.
  • The app has a built-in photo editing suite that lets users do basic edits to pictures.
  • Photo-management is done at the file-system level, ensuring that your pictures are organized where they already are, rather than creating a separate library.

Download – Picty

Picty is a fairly unknown application so you won’t find it in the software sources of your favorite Linux distro. Instead, to install it on your Linux PC, you must download the source code from GitHub.

5. KPhotoAlbum

KPhotoAlbum is a Qt-based photo management tool for the Linux desktop. Unlike a lot of other tools, KphotoAlbum allows users to manage both pictures and video files.

The app is open source, and primarily targeted at the KDE Plasma desktop. However, it also works on GTK-based desktops quite well.

Notable Features

  • KPhotoAlbum organizes images with a database, ensuring hyper-fast search results.
  • Images can be organized based on events, places, people, and tags.
  • KphotoAlbum supports exporting to various online sources like Google Drive and Dropbox.

Download – KPhotoAlbum

KPhotoAlbum has been around for quite a while, so it’s not hard to find it in the default software repositories of many of the mainstream Linux distributions. You’ll also be able to find a binary package for your OS at Pkgs.org.

6. gThumb

gThumb is more of a photo viewer than a dedicated organizer, but it’s still worth mentioning, as it can be configured to organize photographs on the Linux file-system.

This kind of application shouldn’t be your first choice if you’re a serious photographer in need of a decent organization tool. Still, if you’d like to sort the digital pictures stored on your Linux PC, gThumb is up for the job!

Notable Features

  • Displays all image formats and can view EXIF data in JPEG files.
  • Can organize images in individual catalogs.
  • Users can bookmark specific catalogs for easy access.
  • gThumb allows users to add comments to pictures.

Download – gThumb

gThumb has been around for a while, and some Linux distributions have been known to use it as their default photo viewer.

To get your hands on gThumb, head over to Pkgs.org.

Honorable Mention – DarkTable

It might seem weird to place one of the most famous digital photography applications on Linux in the “honorable mention” section, but there is a good reason for it: DarkTable isn’t a digital photo organizer. Sure, it’s got some useful organization features, but that’s not the primary focus of the app.

The primary use for DarkTable is to give users a way to manipulate and edit raw photo data digitally, mess with lighting and so-on. However, it does have a neat feature that lets users manage their “digital negatives” in a database. For this reason, I’ve decided to mention it at the end of the list.

Download – DarkTable

The DarkTable application is cross-platform and is carried on multiple Linux distributions in their software sources.

Decided to check the app out? Head over to our guide that goes over how to install it on Linux!

Conclusion

In this list, we’ve gone over the best photo management tools that the Linux community has to offer. Be sure to check out the download links if you haven’t already.

What’s your favorite photo management tool to use on Linux? Tell us in the comment section below!

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