Check the status of your library in Photos for macOS

Photos for macOS provides detailed information about your photo library, including how many photos and videos you have, when your library was last updated with iCloud Photo Library, and more.

Find the library status display

You can find the library status display at the bottom of the Photos view, below your newest images. To get to the Photos view, click the Photos tab at the top of the window, or in the sidebar (if you have it shown).

What the library status display tells you

The top line of the library status display always shows how many photos and videos you have in your library.

The bottom line is only visible if you have iCloud Photo Library turned on. It shows how the photo library on your Mac compares to what's in your iCloud Photo Library.

Last updated

The first part ("Updated Just Now") tells you when the library on your Mac last updated with iCloud Photo Library.

Items on This Mac Only

The second part ("3 Items on This Mac Only") appears if there are "referenced" photos or videos in the library on your Mac. Referenced items aren't uploaded to iCloud Photo Library, and aren't available on other devices. If you want to include them in iCloud Photo Library, follow these steps:

  1. Create a new Smart album by choosing File > New Smart Album.
  2. Name the Smart Album "Referenced" and set the three pop-up menus to Photo - is - referenced.
  3. Select "Referenced" in the left sidebar. If the sidebar isn't visible, choose View > Show Sidebar.
  4. Press Command-A to select all the photos in the Smart Album, and then choose File > Consolidate.

This brings the referenced photos into your Photos library and will update them with iCloud Photo Library.

Unable to Upload

The third part ("Unable to Upload 2 Items") appears if there are any photos or videos on your Mac that couldn't be uploaded to iCloud Photo Library. You might be able to fix this with steps below. Note that any edits and keywords you've applied to these photos will be lost during this process:

  1. Create a new Smart Album by choosing File > New Smart Album.
  2. Name the Smart Album "Unable to Upload" and set the three pop-up menus to Photo - is - unable to upload to iCloud Photo Library.
  3. Select "Unable to Upload" in the left sidebar. If the sidebar isn't visible, choose View > Show Sidebar.
  4. Press Command-A to select all the photos in the Smart Album, and then choose File > Export > Export Unmodified Original For (#) Photos.
  5. In the dialogs that follow, choose the file name format and location for the exported photos.
  6. After the photos export, make sure the photos are all still selected in the Smart Album. Then right-click or Control-click one of them, and choose Delete (#) Photos from the contextual menu.
  7. Import the photos back into your library by choosing File > Import and finding the images in the location you chose in step 5.

After you finish these steps, the library status display will show the progress of uploading these newly imported photos to iCloud Photo Library.

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