I really want to reset the iPhone camera roll to photo IMG_0001.jpg. I have tried to do it with Image Capure, iExplorer and PhoneView, but any of them did not work at all. Is there a way to clear previous history saved on iPhone (when I take picture, my camera roll starts with IMG_0002.jpg) and to make camera roll to be reset without needing to erase all content and settings?

  • Can we presume you don't want to restore the device entirely?
    – bmike
    Jun 20, 2013 at 21:40
  • 1
    Also, what happened when you edited the file listed here? You just change the number to be 0000. apple.stackexchange.com/a/88287/5472
    – bmike
    Jun 20, 2013 at 21:42
  • yes I do not want to restore the device entirely, also when I edited the file listed there, it did not work at all. The number was still 2 in my case.
    – user51610
    Jun 20, 2013 at 21:50
  • when I edited with iexplorer, it says saved but when I take a picture, the name of the picture is still IMG_0002 not IMG_0001.
    – user51610
    Jun 21, 2013 at 3:20
  • 1
    Hmm - that's odd since if you have deleted all the pictures and also written the 0000 value to the plist file, the camera app should either start with IMG_0000 or IMG_0001. Perhaps you need to list the steps you performed (just pick one of the tools) so that maybe we can see you are skipping a step in the process.
    – bmike
    Jun 21, 2013 at 12:07

2 Answers 2


At the risk of you having done the steps, here is how it worked in the past using PhoneView:

  1. Power off the phone.
  2. Connect to USB and let it start (this way the camera app and others are not accessing the camera roll).
  3. Launch PhoneView and in the settings turn on Show Entire Disk (Advanced Disk Mode)
  4. Delete all pictures, files, folders from inside DCIM _(such as .MISC and 100APPLE, 101APPLE, etc... leaving just the DCIM folder empty).
  5. Edit the PhotoData > MISC > DCIM_APPLE.plist file to set things to 0000 and 100 as desired in the xml file.
  6. Disconnect the USB and power down the phone, never once tapping on any apps while you shuffled things under the OS and the Camera app.
  7. Power on the phone and take a picture.

    DCIMLastDirectoryNumber 100 DCIMLastFileNumber 251

  • I followed your steps through the PhoneView, but in the PhoneView I was not able to edit the DCIM_APPLE.plist file. I dobule-clicked the plist file but it just automatically saved into my computer documents instead of allowing me to change the file. Also, I do know how to change the number into 0000 but I do not know what the 100 for? Thank you for your help again.
    – user51610
    Jun 25, 2013 at 21:27
  • I double-clicked the plist file but it does not allow me to change the file. Instead it just saves a file into my computer. Do you know how to fix this?
    – user51610
    Jun 26, 2013 at 0:52
  • Once you've edited it and saved it to the computer, drag it into the folder in PhoneView and it should offer to overwrite the file on the phone.
    – bmike
    Jun 26, 2013 at 0:59
  • 1
    I was able to reset the photo numbers on my iPhone. Thank you for the help :)
    – user51610
    Jun 26, 2013 at 4:53

The following procedure works in 2019 to set the picture number of iPhones to an arbitrary number:

  1. Install iExplorer (the last free version, search for "iexplorer").

  2. Get all photos from the iPhone and clear all photos from the iPhone as you would usually do when retrieving all photos from the iPhone (e.g. using the Digital Pictures app).

  3. Close all apps on the iPhone.

  4. Connect via USB and launch iExplorer.

  5. Delete all folders Media/DCIM/10[456789]APPLE when setting image number to 3000. Otherwise the highest existing directory name will set the starting image number (e.g. 108APPLE for 8000).

  6. Get file PhotoData/MISC/DCIM_APPLE.plist via drag and drop.

  7. Edit file DCIM_APPLE.plist. Change DCIMLastFileNumber and DCIMLastDirectoryNumber to your needs. When setting the image number to 3000 you need to set the directory number to 103.

  8. Transfer file DCIM_APPLE.plist back to its original location on the iPhone and confirm the overwrite (drag and drop).

  9. Power-cycle the iPhone.

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