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When dragging a photo from an email message to the Photos app, this message appeared:

enter image description here

The full message in dialog reads:

This library contains items that need to download from iCloud Photos.

To download the complete library, delete the incomplete items, then set this library as the System Photo Library in Preferences and enable iCloud Photos. This will disable iCloud Photos on any other libraries.

Delete Incomplete Items [button]

Quit [button]

I am at a complete loss. I have no idea what any of this means. We have a boatload of photos, and I am fearful of Apple deleting them.

The situation is that :

(a) I think we accidentally enabled iCloud Photos on an old Mac. We left it engaged, hoping it might make it easier with our newer Mac.

(b) On that same day, we did a clean install on a newer Mac. This Mac was set up to use the same Apple ID account. This account does have paid-for storage on iCloud.

I am confused for many reasons.

  • I have never understood what "iCloud Photos" is really about.
  • Will photos be uploaded to iCloud? If so, what photos? (We have gigs of images on the old Mac.)
  • Notice the bottom of the screen says "iCloud Photos" is not turned on." So exactly what is the "Updating Library" progress bar in the middle of the screen doing?

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