I tried to sync my photos... what a huge mistake. I knew this would be a disaster before I started but I had to go attempt anyway.

Luckily I had backups of my multiple photo libraries because it completely obliterated all my organization, uploaded thousands of duplicates, won't let me delete anything..

I'm nuking everything and starting fresh.

I have all my libraries restored from 3rd party backups but the problem is I have all these photos in iCloud Photos web.

Is there some kind of automation/javascript I can run in the console to select all photos?

I can't do it from offline because those libraries are so messed up now beyond repair. The only way to do it from the online version is control+clicking every photo. So stupid

4 Answers 4


Ok I found out the easiest way, total time takes about 10 minutes...

First, move or delete all your old photo libraries in Photos app for Mac. I deleted mine because I had 3rd party backups, obviously you shouldn't delete them if you don't. If you move it and it still doesnt show up, just hold the Option key while you start Photos.

Open it fresh, and it will say it can't locate your library. Click "Create New".. name it something like GARBAGE or DELETEME.

Then, go to settings and click 'set as system library', and also enable iCloud sync in settings (make your settings look like photo below). This will download all the photos fresh to this library (which doesnt have existing files so you dont have to worry about duplicates and such).

It will say "Updating X photos", make sure you wait for this step to finish.

However, when it starts saying "Downloading 10,000 photos" then you can move to the next step, you dont have to wait as long as it gets past the 'updating' step.

Select all with command+A, then delete. Go to your trash and then delete again by clicking Delete All.

It will still be stuck saying "downloading 10,000 photos" although they should now start deleting from iCloud (It took about 5 mins for me before it started removing them)

Once its done removing from iCloud web, just close Photos, and delete the temp library on your harddrive. From there, hold option when you start Photos and choose 'create new'. Youll be starting with a 100% fresh iCloud now.

enter image description here


Well, I made a small script which do the job.

 #NoEnv  ; Recommended for performance and compatibility with future AutoHotkey releases.
 #Warn   ; Enable warnings to assist with detecting common errors.
 #SingleInstance force
 SendMode Input  ; Recommended for new scripts due to its superior speed and reliability.
 SetWorkingDir %A_ScriptDir%  ; Ensures a consistent starting directory.
 Loop, 30
    Sleep 1000
     Send {Del}
     Send {Tab}
     Send {Enter}
    Sleep 1000

^!z:: here is the hotkey that starts the script (Ctrl-Alt-Z) and 30 is a number of loop iterations (number of photos to delete).

Prior to starting the script you should position mouse cursor on the upper left photo, for it to work.


This is how you mass delete photos from icloud.com without having to hold down "ctrl" and clicking each picture one by one, which could take forever.

  1. Click the "moments" tab at the top center, so the photos are segregated by moments (location, date, etc).
  2. On each moments section, look to the right hand side with your mouse pointer. You should see the addition "+" icon and the share icon (box with up arrow). Click on either icon.
  3. By clicking either of these icons, the photos in that specific section will be highlighted blue. Just click any of the whitespace on the screen to not proceed with the sharing or adding action. The pop-up asking you if you want to add/share will disappear.
  4. With the photos highlighted blue, click on the trash can icon at the top right hand corner to delete those pictures.
  5. Repeat this process for each moments section until all photos are deleted.

In Photos on iCloud.com, click the first photo, hold ⇧shift and click the last, then choose Delete.

  • 1
    Shift doesn't work anymore
    – Tallboy
    Commented Jan 14, 2018 at 20:22

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