I've recently upgraded to iPhoto '11 (couldn't resist the pricing on the new app store) and as I'm adding more meta-data to my library and generally organizing things (places, faces, etc... I hadn't upgraded since '08) I've noticed something odd in my photos. Every photo in my library has a description (though many are short), but it would appear that somehow the description of one of the photos has been appended to many.

I don't know if maybe I accidentally screwed up a batch change at some point in the past, or if the library upgrade somehow messed up, or what else may have happened. But what I need to do is fix these somehow.

Now, manually editing is something of a daunting task. Within a library of 21,248 photos, 18,858 of them have this additional text. The one thing I do have going for me is that it's a specific string. If there's a way to "remove this string from everywhere in the library without removing the rest of any given description" then that would be perfect.

Is there anything I can do like this? Maybe even manually editing a library file in a text editor? (Would that break anything else in iPhoto if its library was edited outside of the application, even while it's not running?) Does anybody have any ideas?


Jhead will do what you need. (Test first on a small subset of course)

Documentation is here.

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