This may be a trivial one -- I am looking for an application (Windows or MacOS) in which I can browse my photos by date/time (taken/created), even though they do not necessarily reside in the same folder. Any suggestions?

Background: I have my photos organized in different folders, e.g., per event/date, sometimes with subfolders for different devices (e.g., DSLR1, compact camera). Now, especially for events where I've used different cameras in parallel (or for my "catch-all" mobile phone backup folder), I would like to browse all the pictures in the sequence of when they have been taken (ignoring potential time drifts), i.e., like a timeline.

Additional points:

  • I prefer not to use a cloud based solution, but from a local directory or NAS-share
  • I do not want to reorganize my directories (especially not the mobile phone backup folder), but just have a merged view.
  • Free or paid is OK (as long as it is reasonable, ideally under $100)

Picasa proved to be good for this -- but has been discontinued. I am looking for alternatives and would be grateful for any suggestions/pointers. Thanks!

  • Should they be free or paid ones are OK too?
    – Zenit
    Dec 25 '17 at 23:09
  • Good question -- both is fine (updated the description). Happy to pay for useful tools.
    – msto
    Dec 25 '17 at 23:21

This may be an overkill for just this requirement, but Adobe Photoshop Lightroom achieves this (and a lot more).


The Windows 10 "Photos" Application can achieve exactly what you want. You just need to add all your photo locations to the app by using More > Settings > Sources. More Details here.


Directory Opus can do this with its search functionality. Directory Opus is a file manager for windows. Frankly I think it's the best one out there. It's insanely customizable, fast, and can also replace Windows Explorer. I'm also a programmer and it makes my life so much easier. I have no affiliation with them.

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