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How To Organize Photos On Linux With Digikam

Need to organize photos on Linux? Check out Digikam! It’s a digital management tool for photographs on the Linux desktop. It can label, sort and import pictures for you, so you don’t have to do it manually.

SPOILER ALERT: Scroll down and watch the video tutorial at the end of this article.

Install Digikam

Digikam is a KDE application, but it works on pretty much all Linux desktop environments flawlessly. To install it, open up a terminal and follow the instructions that correspond with your Linux distribution.


sudo apt install digikam


sudo apt-get install digikam

Arch Linux

sudo pacman -S digikam


sudo dnf install digikam


sudo zypper install digikam

Generic Linux

Digikam is a KDE application, so getting it on most Linux distributions isn’t difficult. To install it, open up a terminal and search “digikam” in your package manager. Alternatively, follow these instructions to get the AppImage version of the app working.

Using the Digikam AppImage is nice, as everything it needs to run is inside. Download it to your system by opening up a terminal and using the wget downloader tool.

wget https://mirrors.ukfast.co.uk/sites/kde.org/ftp/stable/digikam/digikam-5.9.0-01-x86-64.appimage

or, for the 32-bit version, try:

wget https://mirrors.ustc.edu.cn/kde/stable/digikam/digikam-5.9.0-01-i386.appimage

Now that Digikam is on your system, you’ll need to put it somewhere. In the terminal, use the mkdir command and create an AppImage folder.

mkdir ~/AppImages

Using the mv command, move the Digikam AppImage file to the new ~/AppImage directory.

mv digikam-5.9.0-01-*.appimage ~/AppImages

Move the terminal into the AppImage folder with the CD command.

cd ~/AppImages

Use the chmod command and update the Digikam AppImage file permissions. Updating permissions is an important step, as it will allow the file to execute as if it were a program.

sudo chmod +x digikam-5.9.0-01-*.appimage

Launch the initial Digkam setup tool with:


Sort Images With Digikam

Now that Digikam is installed on your Linux PC, open it up. As it opens, you’ll be taken through the first-launch wizard. This wizard will assist you in setting up Digikam, importing pictures, and setting up a database. When you’re done with the wizard, the app will load and be ready to use.

The first step to cataloging images in Digikam is to sort images into collections. When you first run the app, it’ll set up a default collection in ~/Pictures. This location is good for beginners, but if you’ve got a lot of images, it’s probably best to separate them into more collections.

To create a new collection, open up a terminal and use the mkdir command to make a new folder. Feel free to create as many folders as you need.

mkdir -p ~/collection-1
mkdir -p ~/collection-2
mkdir -p ~/collection-3

With all the collection folders set up on your hard drive, open up the file manager and start copying image files into them. Each of the collection folders is found in /home/. When all images are set up in the collection folders, return to Digikam and click “Settings,” then “Configure Digikam”.

In the settings area, look for “Collections” and select it. Then, look under “Collections” for “local collections” and click on the “Add collections” button.

Browse for each of the custom collection folders you’ve set up and click “OK” to save it.

Create Albums

Setting up custom collection folders is the first step to setting up a good catalog of photos on Digikam. The next step is to separate these images into albums so that your collection is organized, and easy to look through.

Look to the side-bar and select a collection. Selecting a collection on the side will load up all of the photos into the Digikam workspace.

Sort through all of the loaded images (while holding down Ctrl) and select all of the photos in the collection you’d like to add to an album. Then, when all the desired images are selected, let go of the Ctrl button, and right-click on any one of the selected images. In the right-click menu, look for the “move to album” option.

Clicking “move to album” brings up an album window. In the window, click the “new album” button.

Fill out the information in the “new album” window and click “OK” when everything looks good to create the new album.

Tag Images

Collections and albums help organize images. Without them, it’s tedious to look through image files in Digikam. However, your digital photo library will never be truly organized until you utilize the Digikam “tag” feature.

To tag an image file in Digikam, look through your albums for an image. Right-click on it, and select “assign tag”.

In the “assign tag” menu, click the “add new tag” option. From here, fill out the tag you’d like to assign to the photo. Repeat this process until all images have relevant tags.

When you’re done, your entire Digikam photo library is searchable. To find a photo in the database, click the “search” button on the left and type in a relevant tag (keyword) in the box.

If you need to organize both photos and videos on Linux, consider checking out Rapid Photo Downloader.

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