In the past years I've taken many 360° pictures. I used the Google photo sphere function in the camera app of my Android Pixel phone to do this.

These images are now on my computer, mixed up with tenth of thousands of other images. I did not tag them.

The transfer software named the to something like 2022-02-17 - 002.jpg. So I cannot search for a something included in the name.

The OS doesn't really matter for me. The images are stored on transferable hard disk and I can connect this hard disk to any of our PCs (Windows, Mac OS, Linux).

I would really like view these 360° images again.

Does the phone tag them somehow? Is there a way to search for these 360° images?

  • \$\begingroup\$ If you could add what Operating System and software you are using, members might be able to add steps on searching / sorting for panorama's. \$\endgroup\$
    – dmkonlinux
    Dec 20, 2023 at 9:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ Panoramas from own Pixel7 are called PXL_{datetimle}.PANO.jpg and the PhotoSphere ones PXL_{datetimle}.PHOTOSPHERE.jpg. Isn't it the ase on, your phone? Or are the names mangled during transfer? \$\endgroup\$
    – xenoid
    Dec 20, 2023 at 17:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ Unfortunately the names are different because of the transfer - eg. they are now called 2021-03-17 -001.jpg - I've updated the question. \$\endgroup\$
    – Sandra
    Dec 21, 2023 at 13:54

1 Answer 1


There are several identifiers of panoramas.

Your photos have (probably) been tagged automatically by the creating software. Hugin for example adds:

Projection : Equirectangular (2) FOV: 360 x 180 Ev: 14.64

to the images caption / description exif tags and


to the Stitching Software tag.

The image sharing website flickr has a facility to display 360 panoramas and identifies them through metadata.

flickr Equirectangular group discussion


Those tags as explained here: https://exiv2.org/tags-xmp-GPano.html are googles photo sphere xmp tags so it's reasonable to assume an android phone has added these (see also https://developers.google.com/streetview/spherical-metadata).

Finally the format of 360x180 panoramas is a 2:1 pixel ratio.

All you need now is some software (or a script) that allows you to search for these things.


As a linux user I thought I'd be able to go straight to a cataloguing tool such as digikam DAM, Digital asset management for Linux, but the best I can do is an advanced search for Aspect Ratio = 2:1. The problem is this will include any image cropped to 2:1 as well. Unless there is something else in the description to help, you will get a lot of false positives. Digikam imports image metadata into a library in the form of a SQlite3 database file which is queried by digikam for it's searches and forms. It might be possible for external software to produce a list of images based on the gpano tags. For the scripters and coders exiftool can search for metadata and return a list too.

This might be a two parter for someone else to finish...

  • \$\begingroup\$ Your answer seems to be about normal panoramas - generated by the panorama function of a software or by the phone. My question is about 360° photo spheres. Sometimes they are also called panoramas. I did not stitch anything. \$\endgroup\$
    – Sandra
    Dec 21, 2023 at 13:56
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I've read your answer again and wanted to edit my answer - but stackexchange doesn't let me do it, because my comment is already 6 minutes old. Strange... Please disregard my first comment. Here is my real comment: So you think I could search for an XMP-GPano tag? Do you know any software you would use to search my pictures for a tag? \$\endgroup\$
    – Sandra
    Dec 21, 2023 at 14:03
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ If the data is in the XMP-GPano group, then you could use exiftool on the command line to get a list of files with this command exiftool -if '$XMP-GPano:all' -FilePath -r /Directory/to/Search/ No need for a script, exiftool has powerful batch ability built in. This command would be for Mac/Linux. On Windows CMD, change the single quotes into double quotes. \$\endgroup\$
    – StarGeek
    Dec 22, 2023 at 16:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @StarGeek Nice. You know exiftool better than I do. Do I remember correctly that windows directory slashes go the other way? It's been a while. \$\endgroup\$
    – dmkonlinux
    Dec 22, 2023 at 17:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes, Windows uses backslashes, but it doesn't matter to exiftool. It will read file paths with slashes or backslashes. They get converted to slashes internally. \$\endgroup\$
    – StarGeek
    Dec 22, 2023 at 20:38

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