Weird problems in iPhoto under Lion

The latest issue I am having with Lion is that iPhoto now seems to be screwed up. It loads ok and you can do some editing but some functions don’t work anymore. So far I have found problems with cropping and also with the neutral balance eyedropper tool.

Here, in the first screenshot, you can see I am trying to crop an image:

Cropping bug in iPhoto under Lion

As you can see in the bottom left hand corner, the mouse pointer is a hand. However, it doesn’t do anything so I can’t adjust the size of the crop. Even if I choose the ‘custom’ setting in the size dialogue (to right of the ‘Constrain:’ label) it doesn’t work. In essence, you are stuck with the size options given and can’t selectively crop as previously under Snow Leopard.

The second issue is that the eyedropper tool in the ‘Adjust’ toolbox doesn’t work either. You get a hand cursor and you can’t do anything with it. However you try to click on a part of the image, nothing happens.

Eyedropper tool issue in iPhoto under Lion

I have started a thread on Apple Communities here: iPhoto has issues since upgrade to Lion if you want to contribute to the discussion or suggest solutions.


Thanks to Terence Devlin, the answer was soon apparent:

Try trash the file from the HD/Users/ Your Name / library / preferences folder.

(On 10.7: Hold the option (or alt) key while clicking on the Go menu in Finder to access the User Library)

(Remember you’ll need to reset your User options afterwards. These include minor settings like the window colour and so on. Note: If you’ve moved your library you’ll need to point iPhoto at it again.)

What’s the plist file?

For new users: Every application on your Mac has an accompanying plist file. It records certain User choices. For instance, in your favourite Word Processor it remembers your choice of Default Font, on your Web Browser is remembers things like your choice of Home Page. It even recalls what windows you had open last if your app allows you to pick up from where you left off last. The iPhoto plist file remembers things like the location of the Library, your choice of background colour, whether you are running a Referenced or Managed Library, what preferences you have for autosplitting events and so on. Trashing the plist file forces the app to generate a new one on the next launch, and this restores things to the Factory Defaults. Hence, if you’ve changed any of these things you’ll need to reset them. If you haven’t, then no bother. Trashing the plist file is Mac troubleshooting 101.

Thanks mate!

One thought on “Weird problems in iPhoto under Lion

  1. I opened iPhoto tonight for the first time since upgrading to Lion on my MacBook Pro a few days ago. It is completely screwed up. When I try to duplicate an image, it crashes. When I do an Exposure adjustment on a full-screen version of an image, it shows up there and on the thumbnail. But then if I enlarge it again, it goes back to the original exposure setting. No obvious way to get out of Adjustments. iPhoto is so unbelievably broken. Thank the gods I didn’t upgrade my iMac, on which I absolutely depend on Aperture, or I would be well and truly screwed.


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