I recently discovered that I have two separate photo libraries on my Mac under different user profiles: "jack" and "jack1".

The photo library in the "jack" profile is named "Photos Library.photoslibrary" (74GB), and the one in the "jack1" profile is named "Photos Library" (44GB). It seems like both libraries have some unique photos, where "Photos Library" date cut-off seems 2019. I'm not sure how they ended up with different names and under different user profiles.

Jack profile only has the picture folder with data, as above. Jack1 has all the other folders and data for my laptop.

I want to merge these two libraries into one to save space and have all my photos in one place. Has anyone faced a similar issue, and can you please recommend the best way to merge these libraries without losing any photos or creating duplicates? Any advice on third-party tools or manual methods would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance!

2 Answers 2


On the user you want to move photos out of, move the library file to /Users/Shared so that it can be accessed by the other user

Then, log into the user you want to move the photos into and open Photos. Do file > import and navigate to /Users/Shared and select the photo library.

Read more about merging libraries here: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT209528

  • but how did I get to have two accounts? I always had one. Which one is the original in this case?
    – Render
    Commented Apr 29, 2023 at 8:13
  • Unfortunately there's no way to tell, I've never heard of this happening before unless you've done unusual things restoring backups or with user management in the past
    – Ezekiel
    Commented Apr 29, 2023 at 16:58
  • The import for the Jack Photos Library.photoslibrary" (74GB) folder is greyed out. But when I open the photos app, I can see pictures from both timelines (pre 2019 and post 2019)
    – Render
    Commented Apr 30, 2023 at 6:34

I first performed a manual backup of the photos stored in the user profile "jack", although I wasn't overly concerned about losing any images as they were also stored on iCloud.

Next, I deleted the "jack" profile and simultaneously removed the photos folder from the "jack1" profile. This action effectively cleared all photographs from my laptop.

In an effort to eliminate duplicate profiles, I made several changes. I renamed the primary profile from "jack1" to "jack" and also modified the home folder's location. I can't recall the specific steps to this process, unfortunately, as I didn't document it and can't find the relevant information in my browsing history.

Following these changes, I launched the Photos app and synchronized all my pictures. Once this process was completed, I noted that there was no duplicate/extra profile, and the space used on my hard drive was not duplicated. This allowed me to free up a significant amount of storage space on my laptop.

This method worked well for me.

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