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Using IMatch to import metadata from the Alamy spreadsheet


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Following on from Roger's instructions on importing data into Lightroom using exiftool, I thought I'd do the same to show how I did it with Imatch.  Imatch uses exiftool in the background for a lot of its operations but uses various modules and apps to make life easier.  

First of all open the spreadsheet in excel and delete all the columns that are not needed, leaving only File Name (your file name, not the Alamy ref), Caption, Tags and Supertags.  Make sure these names are in the first row of the csv file.  (See note 1)
Save as a CSV file. (2)
Open the IMatch Import Module.  Select the CSV file.  It should then automatically detect the available columns in the csv file and list them below.
For 'Field delimiter' select , (single comma) from the drop-down list.
For 'Record Delim.' select CRLF (Windows Style) and for Split Repeatable Tags (3) as semi-colon.  
For 'Import Into' select 'Metadata Tags'

Make sure the 'File Name' is ticked.

Now we need to select the metadata tags to import to.  These are selectable from drop-down lists.  Note that I have selected the same metadata tag for both the 'tags' and 'supertags' column.  IMatch will merge the two columns and automatically delete any duplicates.

 

It should now look something like this (click on the image for a larger version)....

 

51195784383_ff101c29c1_b.jpg


Now hit the 'Import' button and away you go - it's as simple as that.   Well, er, not quite....

 

The file name in the CSV file has to be 'fully qualified' - that is, it has to contain the full Windows path in order to find the files.  For instance the file name should read something like.. 'C:\alamy\peak-1234.jpg'
I always name my alamy files with a prefix followed by a hyphen so I was able do a simple 'find and replace' using Notepad++  If there was no hyphen it would of course find every instance of 'peak', or whatever, in the csv file.  It may be easier doing this step in the excel file by adding an extra column before the file name then merging them.  I don't use excel if I can possibly avoid it though, so I don't know how to do this.

I also had a problem at first with the importer module stopping and giving an error message.  This was caused by a couple of spurious commas in the csv file.  I ended up doing the import in batches until the error showed up and I was able to whittle it down until I found the offending commas. 

 

Note that IMatch only imports the data to its own database at first - nothing as yet has been written to the files.  It only does this when you specifically tell it to, so you can check everything before you commit it to the files.

  
Notes.

1.  It's not strictly necessary to delete any columns but it makes life easier if there are any problems.
2.  When I saved as a csv file straight from excel, IMatch didn't recognise it - I had to open it with Lotus Approach and save it as a csv from there, then it was okay.  Normally I don't use excel so I was probably doing something wrong and/or it was because I'm using an old version of excel (2007).  I detest MS Office products.
3.  I've no idea what Split Repeatable Tags means...😳

 

The IMatch help files are available online so for more info see here.... https://www.photools.com/help/imatch/#impexp_csv.htm

 

Unfortunately IMatch is Windows only but some people use it on a Mac (using Parallels or something).

 

Edited by Vincent Lowe
Grammatical error
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With IMatch you can also add extra information to files which you don't want in the metadata of the files.  IMatch calls them 'Attributes'.  These are held only in IMatch, not in the files.  I used the CSV importer to import the Alamy 'Additional Info' field into IMatch, so I also have a record of this information attached to each file.

 

https://www.photools.com/help/imatch/#attr_basics.htm

 

 

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