Ask Different is a question and answer site for power users of Apple hardware and software. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Is there a way to bypass the automatic updating of faces in iPhoto (OS X Lion 10.7.5.) My iPhoto is full of "faces" of people it has picked up from the backgrounds of my photos, making it so slow and having to delete so many photos afterwards that I stopped using it.

If not, can you suggest any other similar software I can use to index and sort my photos?

share|improve this question
The first question (how can I turn off faces) is fine, the second (other similar software to index and sort photos) is too broad and should be a question on its own with specified requirements. Chance is that the latter question is already answered on this stack exchange or on – Saaru Lindestøkke Feb 11 '13 at 0:25

No. There is no way to turn off Faces in iPhoto. The best way is to use Aperture. I use Aperture, but a common alternative is Adobe Lightroom.

share|improve this answer
2 years and countless revs later... is it still impossible to disable Faces? My best workaround is to "pause" the Faces processing every time I start iPhoto... this makes me crazy. One is forced to use (expensive!) pay-ware Aperture or alternative software? – hoc_age Oct 27 '14 at 17:46

Afraid not, but you should not see these face thumbnails. Are they actually in the iPhoto Window ? An alternative, that will also allow an upgrade path is to use Aperture which has the option to turn off face scanning.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.