This is a follow up to a question asked on askubuntu: https://askubuntu.com/questions/708759/color-adjustment-for-100-jpg-files-fast-workflow-for-savenext

I want to do manual color adjustment for 100 jpg files.

The workflow I use at the moment works like this:

  1. open first jpg
  2. do manual color adjustment. Either "auto" or "curves"
  3. load next jpg

I want to do a manual correction of each photo. This question is not about batch processing.

I want the switching (save current, go to next) to be fast as using a flipbook.

Up to now I used gimp, but I think switching to darktable has a lot of benefits.

I know that perfectionists don't do "load jpg, edit jpg, overwrite jpg". But I am not a perfectionist. I want to do it this way (sometimes).


How to overwrite to source jpg files with darktable?

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ It's worth noting that the reason this workflow is slightly awkward in darktable is because it's designed entirely around the concept of "non-destructive editing", where the original (typically RAW) file is normally never modified. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 19, 2015 at 20:58

1 Answer 1


Darktable isn't really set up to do this. A lot of modern workflow software like this is "opinionated" — it's set up with a certain way of doing things in mind, and designed intentionally around that, rather than providing a toolbox of options. In Darktable's case, that workflow is non-destructive editing — basically the opposite of what you're going for.

But that said, in this particular case, there's an easy way to do things which is similar to what you're asking for and should give decent results. Import all your images in whatever way you want (darktable *.jpg on the command line), and make all the changes to each one. When you're done, enter $(FILE_FOLDER)/$(FILE_NAME) as the output, select all the images, and then press export. You'll need to check "overwrite" each time (but not for each file separately), presumably as a safety feature.

I don't think that Darktable has a way a to match JPEG output quality to input quality, though, and for the kind of thing you're talking about that might be a deal-breaker.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ You can also just keep the placeholders $(FILE_FOLDER)/$(FILE_NAME) set as the output, and check the 'overwrite' box before hitting 'export'. The checkbox unchecks itself after the export operation, I'm assuming this is an intentional safety feature. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 19, 2015 at 20:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ Ah, cool, I didn't know $(FILE_FOLDER) worked. \$\endgroup\$
    – mattdm
    Dec 19, 2015 at 20:57

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