Folders, Albums, Events, Categories, Keywords . .

Librarian here, but new to both photo organization and Mylio. Working on consolidating family photos from four generations, so a combination of scanned slides, prints, and digital images from many sources.

Using yyyy-mm-dd event file naming, with images in folders named with year and time period or event e.g. 06 Winter = images taken in 2006 during Winter months.
Windows-based devices/vaults, although currently using iPhone to take pictures.

I think I get Mylio’s folders (my existing folder structure). I’m used to keywords in other systems, but they work differently here. (I’m still learning “search” to find images. I’m sure it is pilot error and will figure it out.) But I’m at a loss to make sense of the rest, especially since sharing images with others in the end will involve exporting images back into folders (albeit with captions attached).

I keep seeing references on the boards here to categories and albums and ?? but not in enough specificity for me to understand how/why. I’d love to see more detailed descriptions about how others use various features, and in what combinations. (Assuming no one is using all of them - we are meant to pick and choose, correct?)


You mention exporting & sharing images - and I think that’s important for deciding how to organize things in Mylio, and what tools to use. Unfortunately, I also think this is one of Mylio’s biggest weaknesses - little support for common “curate and share” scenarios. Mylio’s most basic assumption is that every device will contain a synced copy of every photo, at least in thumbnail size. If you want to share just a set of curated photos, you’ll need to export them from Mylio and use another platform to publish them.

While my primary photo management is still done in Lightroom Classic, I’ve been using Mylio to edit & tag a large family photo archive. Mylio lets me delegate metadata editing to my wife on her computer (Lightroom Classic is inherently single-machine, single-user) - and potentially other relatives eventually.

I don’t worry about folders too much, since they’re somewhat restrictive - a photo can only be in one folder. I just try to make sure that images are imported into a consistent folder hierarchy by date (eg: /Scanned Photos/Year/Date, or /RAW Photos/Year/Date).

The main metadata I use are Keywords, Caption, Date, Star Ratings, and Color Labels. I use Keywords for People rather than Mylio’s face-recognition - mainly because Mylio’s “People” implementation appears to be incompatible with Lightroom’s (though both recognize Keywords). Star Ratings let me track which photos are worth sharing or publishing. Color Labels help me categorize which photos are part of my “Family History” project (I don’t use Mylio Categories because it appears they don’t interop with Lightroom).

In the end, all the metadata edits done in Mylio get synced back into my “master” Lightroom Classic catalog. From Lightroom I can easily publish sets of photos to various platforms (eg, publish all 3-star+ photos in the Red category (family photo archive) to my family Smugmug website).

Beyond metadata, I of course use Mylio for the other things it’s good at: a great backup tool, and the only way I know to always have ALL the photos in my 300,000 photo collection with me on my phone at all times (at least in thumbnail size).

Thank you again for the quick response, and details.

My first priority is DAM; but yes, then making the images and what we know about them accessible. I chose Mylio because it is platform and software independent. Everyone in the family has different devices and different levels of technical ability.

I didn’t start out thinking about “everyone” using Mylio to access a “family” vault of “read-only” albums . . . I’ll have to give that more thought. But it may be sufficient that my workflow will be to use Mylio to quickly add metadata; and do nothing more than export images into shared “story” folders.

About your organization of scanned images: do you track folders by the year/date you are doing the scanning? Or are you putting images into folders based on date image was captured? Does folder name/date matter if estimated date of original image is in the file name? And do you change the date of the image (from date scanned to estimated date of photograph)? Thinking ahead to future users . . .

Thank you!

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I have a curated collection of scanned family photos going back over a hundred years, and I presently use Mylio as my management tool for it because it works the same on all my devices/computers. The photos have their dates set to the ‘original’ date rather than the ‘scanned’ date, and the folders are named for the original year and then context (a broad place, or family grouping). I started scanning them (mostly from negatives) many years ago, and it would have been useful to record the scan date as well because they weren’t done in order. Scanning technology is now rather better than it was then, so the scan date would have indicated which ones would benefit from re-scanning without having to look at them all again!

I have a variety of keywords from previous management tools, but Mylio won’t filter the view based on keywords, and searching is awkward, so I have duplicated some common keywords using ‘fake people’ whose names start with ‘@’ (which I think of as ‘contexts’ - certain groups of people, or broad geographic locations). This way I can use the People filter instead of keywords. You can find more about this here.

I don’t share my Mylio account with anyone else. As @jimre suggests, I export images for sharing, so that other family members can import them into whatever app they fancy, or just view them in a web browser. Categories and album membership don’t get included in exported images; people and keywords do.

We presently use OneDrive as the sharing mechanism (only because it was essentially free, since I have a family Office 365 subscription), but I have found it problematic - it seems that Microsoft messes with the keywords, even though I have their ‘smart tagging’ feature turned off. It is best to get everything right before uploading to OneDrive, since bulk updates seem to get reverted within a few minutes. It’s probably part of their accidental deletion mitigation, but really not helpful in this case. I think we will be shifting it all elsewhere soon.

I don’t really use Mylio’s calendar, events, maps, or albums any more. I know the calendar view is important to the Mylio team, but it just doesn’t work for me as an entry point to the collection, as I have overlapping ‘threads’ of images from family members scattered around the world. Maps doesn’t help either, as these family members move. Albums are too static - I’m adding photos almost every day - and would need to be ‘smart’ (based on searches) to be any use. I generally use either the ‘All Photos’ view with filters (for management), or the ‘Folder’ view (when adding new images).

Categories are currently only partially useful to me, because of editing issues causing them to ‘leak’ if set on specific images. When inherited from folders they work fine, and I presently use these to provide broad time range filtering.

I take the long view on all this - Mylio is the latest in a line of management tools I have used, of which Apple’s Aperture was the longest-lasting - and so everything I do has to be as ‘standard’ as possible. This means I still maintain keywords for people, places, contexts, animals, and so on - even for ratings, in case of import to Apple Photos, which doesn’t support proper ratings. I find this duplication necessary but annoying; I wish Mylio had keyword filtering.

I hope this helps!


It does help! Thank you!

True: I am replying months after the posts in this thread.
The filter bar does offer both positive and negative keyword filtering through the “custom” button. It would be more intuitive if it were one of the labelled options but it is pretty straightforward to use and is fast.

We plan to introduce true “sharing” sometime relatively soon.