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How to Delete Duplicate Photos on Mac OS All Versions?

Published By Satyam Jha
Approved By Anuraag Singh
Published On December 21st, 2023
Reading Time 7 Minutes Reading

Highlights: Snapping or Clicking pictures is common among the people of our generation. Also while doing so, we could end up capturing multiple images of one scene. Thus, this could lead to a collection of duplicate photos on Mac slowing down your Mac performance. To prevent this, we have prepared this article for you on “How to delete duplicate photos on Mac OS Catalina, Big Sur, Monterey, and more?”

Moreover, duplicate images are nothing but the replicas of original pic. Giving space to these identical photos can result in clogging up, hampering system performance, and cluttered storage. In the upcoming section, we have answered in different ways to rectify these issues. With this information about the subject, let’s dive in. 

Table of Contents Hide

How to Find and Remove Duplicate Pictures on Macbook – Quick Solution

Step 1. Download and launch the Mac Duplicate Photo Finder.

Step 2. Click on “Add Folder” to open the folder containing duplicates.

Step 3. Select extension (.png, .jpg, .webp, etc.). Then hit on Continue.

Step 4. Tap on the Delete tab to remove duplicate pictures. 

Method#1: How to Delete Duplicate Photos on Mac OS Sonoma For Free Using Photos App?

This Photos App’s built-in feature is finding duplicate images in the Macbook Air. Particularly when incorporating new images into the directory. Additionally, should identical duplicates exist in your Photo Library, this tool allows you to manually remove them. 

  • Open the Photos App on your Mac OS by using Spotlight (Cmd + Space) and entering “Photos.”
  • Go to the File menu and select New Smart Album.
  • In the Smart Album dialog box, specify criteria to identify duplicates, such as Photos from the last 12 months, Camera Model as [your camera model], etc. You can add more criteria by clicking the “+” icon.
  • Review the photos to identify duplicates.
  • Choose the photo(s) you want to delete.
  • Right-click and select “Delete [numeric value] Photos.”
  • Finally, permanently remove identical images by going to the “Recently Deleted” tab in the left sidebar. Select all and click “Delete [numeric value] Items.”

Latest Tech Update

If you are operating on macOS Ventura and Sonoma, it would be easier for you to delete duplicate photos. Apple has launched a Duplicates feature in these versions, that enables you to detect and remove identical photos and videos from your photo library. Here, the system will automatically detect duplicate pictures and movie files. If none are found, please wait for a while, as the photo scrutiny process is in progress. Follow the steps outlined below to eliminate duplicate pictures using the Photos app on macOS: 

  • Navigate to the Duplicates tab located in the sidebar.
  • Select the photos and videos you wish to combine from the list of identical items.
  • Click the Merge button with the specified numeric value to consolidate [numeric value] items.

Method#2: How to Remove Multiple Duplicate Pictures on Mac OS Ventura with New Smart Folder?

Utilize this section to efficiently identify and remove duplicate clicks on your Mac. Simply access the New Smart Folder option to follow the steps for eliminating duplicate photos using Finder:

  • Open the top menu of your window and select “File” → “New Smart Folder.”
  • Click on the “+” icon located in the top right corner to include search criteria.
  • Choose the first criterion by going to the initial dropdown menu, labeled “Kind,” and then select “Image” from the subsequent dropdown.
  • Optionally, you can add more criteria like “Date Created” or “Date Modified” by clicking the “+” button again.
  • Organize the images by name within the Smart Folder window. Click on the “+” icon once more, choose “Name” from the first dropdown, and select “is.” in the second dropdown. Keep the text field next to “is” empty.
  • Finally, manually identify images with similar names or thumbnails. Right-click on them, and either select “Move to Trash” or press ‘Cmd + Delete’.

Keep in mind that the above-mentioned techniques searches are based on filenames and metadata to find duplicate image files. Therefore, have a backup of the folder before deleting the files.

Method#3: How to Find and Remove Duplicate Photos on Mac OS Catalina by Using Terminal?

Use the following code in the Mac Terminal to automatically find and delete duplicate images from the media libraries. This algorithm uses MD5 checksums or hash values to scan the files.  

Moreover, exercise caution during this irreversible process. Make sure to back up your photos before proceeding. Let’s get started.


# Specify the path to your photo library


# Navigate to the photo library

cd “$photos_folder” || exit

# Identify and remove duplicate files

find . -type f -exec md5sum {} + | sort | uniq -w32 –all-repeated=separate | while read -r line; do


    files=(${line:35} )


    for ((i = 1; i < num_files; i++)); do


        echo “Deleting duplicate: $file”

        rm “$file”



echo “Duplicate deletion complete.”

Don’t forget to replace library path ‘/path/to/your/photos’ with the actual path. Also, save the above script in a file with .sh file extension. E.g.  ‘delete_duplicates.sh’. Then, run the following command:

chmod +x delete_duplicates.sh

Drawbacks in the Manual/Free Solutions to Mac Remove Duplicate Images

Here are some of the shortcomings of the most used manual methods:

  • Identifying and removing duplicate photos on Mac manually is time-consuming, labor-intensive, and occasionally challenging.
  • Careless management may lead to the unintentional deletion of non-duplicate images, resulting in data loss.
  • Less effective for large photo libraries.
  • Manual methods may miss subtle variations in images.
  • Technical skills are necessary for proper code operation.
  • Manual processes often lack automation, leading to unnecessary time and energy consumption.

Method#4: How to Delete Duplicate Photos on macOS? – An Automatic Solution

While the mentioned strategies may work well for small image collections, they may not prove efficient for larger sets. Therefore, we recommend opting for a reliable and professional method to eliminate numerous duplicate photos on macOS. The recommended solution is Macwaretools Duplicate File Finder for Mac, an automated tool designed by experts. This utility is specifically crafted to locate and remove accumulated redundant pictures on various macOS versions, including Catalina, Monterey, Big Sur, and other versions. Here are some key attributes of the application.

  • Advanced Scanning Engine
  • In-depth Recursive Scanning
  • Wide Range of Supported File Extensions (e.g., CR2, NEF, ORF, RAF, SR2, MRW, DCR, PG/JPEG, TIFF/TIF, ICO, PS, PNG, BMP, GIF, PSD, CRW, WMF, DNG, ERF, RAW, SWF, SVG, PAT, X3F, etc.)
  • Move or Delete Duplicate Photos Effortlessly
  • Visual Detection of Similar Images
  • Preview Functionality for Photo Verification
  • Compatibility with Various External Storage Devices (e.g., Pendrive, MicroSD, etc.)

Simple Steps to Find and Delete Identical Images on macOS

Step 1. Install Duplicate Photo Remover on your system.

tool screen view


Step 2. Open the folder with duplicate photos by clicking Add Folder.

Click on Add Folder

Step 3. Choose scanning parameters and file type, then click Continue.

tap on continue to delete duplicate photos on macOS

Step 4. Delete redundant picture files by clicking on the Delete tab.

hit on the Delete tab

Step 5. Confirm the successful deletion by checking the “Deleted” message under the Action column.

Action to Deleted

Final Takeaway

After going through the write-up, you must gain knowledge regarding the question of “How to delete duplicate photos on macOS?” Further, we have highlighted a few manual methods and their resulting limitations. In the end, we have discussed the expert solution to encounter all challenges in the process.

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