Fam­ily Shar­ing in Photos

How to share your pic­tures us­ing the Photos app

iPad&iPhone user - - IPAD & IPHONE USER -

If more than one Mac- or iOS de­vice-us­ing per­son lives un­der your roof – or if you share your Mac with one or more peo­ple – us­ing Photos in a fam­ily sit­u­a­tion can be a com­pli­cated af­fair. Be­cause you can’t share Photos li­braries across a net­work, you quickly end up with mul­ti­ple li­braries (one for each Mac user ac­count) and no­body re­mem­bers which pic­tures live where. It’s a night­mare; but for­tu­nately, Ap­ple has a so­lu­tion.

Meet Fam­ily Shar­ing

Fam­ily Shar­ing en­ables you to cre­ate a spe­cial group that you in­vite fam­ily mem­bers to join. The end re­sult is a shared al­bum named Fam­ily that ev­ery­one in

the group can ac­cess (and it can’t be shared with any­one out­side the group). Fam­ily mem­bers can easily add or re­move their own pic­tures and videos, which are view­able and down­load­able by ev­ery­one in the group. This al­bum is also ac­ces­si­ble on the web; just visit iCloud.com and sign into your iCloud ac­count to see all the good­ies it con­tains.

With Fam­ily Shar­ing, each per­son main­tains his or her own Photos li­brary and gets to choose what’s shared with ev­ery­one else. This gives each mem­ber some level of pri­vacy while you, Fam­ily Com­man­der-In-Chief, have ac­cess to shared items and can down­load them into your own li­brary in or­der to in­clude them in projects such as books, cal­en­dars, and cards

It’s a great long-term so­lu­tion, too. For ex­am­ple, as fam­ily mem­bers get ad­di­tional iOS de­vices, their own Macs, or they move away, their unique Ap­ple ID en­sures that all their pic­tures, videos, emails, and so on mi­grate to the new de­vices. Plus they can con­tinue to share dig­i­tal proof of their ad­ven­tures, even from far away.

And that’s not all; the Fam­ily al­bum is just one of sev­eral ser­vices that you can share among the mem­bers in your group. Other ser­vices in­clude a shared Cal­en­dar, pur­chases from Ap­ple’s App store, iBooks store, and iTunes store, and track­ing the lo­ca­tions of Macs and iOS gad­gets.

How to set it up User ac­counts

If you haven’t done so al­ready, set up each per­son with their own user ac­count on the shared Mac

so they get their own Photos li­brary, email, iCloud doc­u­ment stor­age, and so on.

Ap­ple IDs for ev­ery­one

If any of your fam­ily mem­bers lack an Ap­ple ID, go online and sign up. Bear in mind that an Ap­ple ID is au­to­mat­i­cally cre­ated when some­one pur­chases an item from Ap­ple.com or you turn on iCloud ser­vices on a de­vice run­ning iOS 5 or later, so check for ex­ist­ing ac­counts.

Cre­ate a Fam­ily Group

You can per­form this on your Mac or on your iOS de­vice. On a Mac, go to Sys­tem Pref­er­ences → iCloud. In the re­sult­ing pane, click Set Up Fam­ily, and then fol­low the on­screen in­struc­tions. To set up fam­ily shar­ing on an iOS de­vice, tap Set­tings → iCloud. On the next screen, tap Set Up Fam­ily Shar­ing, and then tap Get Started. Be­cause Fam­ily Shar­ing ex­tends be­yond shar­ing pic­tures and videos and into the realm of iTunes pur­chases and so on, you’re prompted to en­ter a credit card.

In­vite peo­ple to join the Fam­ily Group

Now that you have a Fam­ily Group, you can in­vite fam­ily mem­bers to join it. On a Mac, go to Sys­tem Pref­er­ences → iCloud and click Man­age Fam­ily. Click Add Fam­ily Mem­ber or click the ‘+’ but­ton at the lower left and then fol­low the on­screen in­struc­tions. On an iOS de­vice, go to Set­tings → iCloud → Fam­ily → Add Fam­ily Mem­ber.

You’ll need each fam­ily mem­ber’s email ad­dress. When you’ve fin­ished en­ter­ing the first ad­dress,

click Con­tinue. If you en­tered an email ad­dress as­so­ci­ated with the per­son’s Ap­ple ID, the next pane lets you en­ter their Ap­ple ID pass­word or, if you don’t, you can trig­ger an email in­vi­ta­tion.

Your in­vi­ta­tion winds up in the re­cip­i­ent’s email in­box. Once they click the big blue View In­vi­ta­tion but­ton in the body of the email, the Fam­ily Shar­ing pref­er­ences pane springs open and lists all the slick things they can do – share pur­chased mu­sic, movies, apps, and books; share pic­tures and videos; and share events on a fam­ily cal­en­dar.

Next, your re­cip­i­ent will need to click Ac­cept. If the per­son be­longs to another fam­ily group, a mes­sage ap­pears stat­ing that they have to leave that group be­fore join­ing another one. Your re­cip­i­ent

can click OK, and then use the pref­er­ence pane that ap­pears to ex­tri­cate his or her­self from the other group. (Ap­ple lim­its you to be­ing a mem­ber of only one fam­ily group, and you can only switch fam­ily groups once per year.)

To check whether your fam­ily shar­ing in­vi­ta­tion has been ac­cepted, in the iCloud sys­tem pref­er­ence and se­lect Man­age Fam­ily. Se­lect a per­son’s name to see the sta­tus of their in­vi­ta­tion. If you need to re­send it, se­lect Re­send In­vi­ta­tion. To check your in­vi­ta­tions on an iOS de­vice, tap Set­tings and in the iCloud pane, tap Fam­ily. If nec­es­sary, you can re­send an in­vi­ta­tion from there. No mat­ter what, Photos au­to­mat­i­cally cre­ates a new al­bum named Fam­ily in Shared view. Ap­ple also adds a Fam­ily cat­e­gory to the Cal­en­dar and Re­minders apps.

Start shar­ing

Any­one in your fam­ily group can now add pic­tures and videos to the al­bum, though it’s eas­i­est if you turn on the side­bar, which is like iPhoto’s source list. Choose View → Show Side­bar and then drag thumb­nails from the preview area into the Fam­ily al­bum. The new con­tent im­me­di­ately ap­pears in the Fam­ily al­bum on the other group mem­bers’ de­vices.

It’s im­por­tant to re­mem­ber that shared items don’t live on your hard drive (that is, un­less you shared them). If a fam­ily mem­ber wants to edit or in­clude a pic­ture or video in a pro­ject, you need to down­load it from the Fam­ily al­bum into your per­sonal Photos li­brary. To do it, drag the thumb­nail(s) onto the Photos en­try at the top of the side­bar or into an al­bum in the Al­bums sec­tion of the side­bar. You can also Ctrl-click the se­lected thumb­nail(s) and choose Im­port from the short­cut menu that ap­pears. Ei­ther way, the item now lives in your Photos li­brary.

Now you can sit back and en­joy the fruits of your fam­ily shar­ing labours. Re­mem­ber though, this isn’t the way to share con­tent with just any­one. As you re­call, you en­tered a credit card that’s now shared by all the fam­ily mem­bers in your group. To share good­ies with those you aren’t fi­nan­cially re­spon­si­ble for, use reg­u­lar iCloud shared al­bums in­stead.

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