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Smug Tip: Download All for More Than Just Backups

April 9, 2012

Backups with a Click: Download All

Our heroes get questions every day asking about how to retrieve their original photos easily.

The Download All feature is already built into every SmugMug gallery. So log in, open up a gallery and look for the “Download All” link under the Tools menu.

How do they work?

Once you request the download, we’ll smoosh that gallery’s photos, videos and SmugVault archives and hidden images (if you have any) into a compressed zip file. When it’s ready, we’ll email you a link to retrieve it.

Once you get the email, the download link is valid for two whole weeks so you (or anyone you share it with) can get it in that time.

FYI: The photos in the zip file are your Originals, not the smaller display copies you see in your galleries. See more about sizes.

Share Whole Galleries

Backups are a no-brainer. But here are some other ways Smuggers have been using their zip files:

  • Share your memories with friends and family. Maximize the fun from that reunion, trip or when you tailgated the Superbowl.
  • Thrill clients with every shot in the shoot. Perfect for pros who wrap the cost of digital downloads into their session pricing.

The sweet thing about these backup files is that you don’t need a password to grab the goodies. So forward the email and spread the love with a click.

Anything Else to Remember?

  • It goes both ways: You – the owner – don’t need a password to download and open the zip file, but neither does anyone else. Be aware when you share the link, and be sure you’re OK sharing ALL the contents of that gallery.
  • Most Macs and PCs have built-in compression utilities to unzip your file, but if want something new, try 7zip.com. We hear it’s a great option… and it’s free.
  • If you upload more photos into the gallery, you’ll need to request a new backup file to be sure the new stuff gets zipped up, too.

Want to sell your downloads, instead? Pros should check out Gallery Downloads and set their own pricing for the whole shebang.

Have you been using Download All in other ways? Share your ideas here!

  1. April 9, 2012 at 11:43 am

    This is a nice feature. However it would greate to be able to downlaod/share a subcategory of galleries (or a custom set of galleries). I shoot weddings and usually have about 5 or 6 galleries of photos for each client (like this: http://photos.lifesharephoto.com/Weddings2011/09-30). The galleries are within their own subcategory. I offer digital downloads to clients, but right now I have to send them 5 or 6 links to get everything. It would be nice to send them just 1 link with all of their photos.

    • April 9, 2012 at 2:40 pm

      Hi Lou, did you know that you can request backup files for collected photos? Even though the Download All option works per gallery, there’s nothing stopping you from collecting all the photos from each of your clients’ galleries into one big gallery. You can then request a zip file for the collection and send it to the client. It’ll be pretty big, but they should only have to click once. Hope this helps!

      • April 9, 2012 at 5:35 pm

        So would I have to manually collect the each photo individually? That would takes tons of time for me as I deliver 750-1000 photos per client. And I’d have to do that for each client. Is there a way to “batch” collect an entire gallery?

    • April 10, 2012 at 9:42 am

      You can sure collect all the photos in a single gallery at once! Tools > Many Photos > more > Collect Photos.

      • April 10, 2012 at 9:50 am

        Ok I’ll have to try that but I’d still have to do that extra step for all of my clients galleries. I shoot about 20 weedings a year, each of which have about 6 galleries each, so I’d have to do that 120 times a year. Ugh.

        I have an idea. Maybe you can guys can integrate this feature it into Events someday. Right now I create an event that includes all of the client’s galleries. I send them one link to their event. It would be awesome to zip all the galleries in an event! Provide them one link to a single zip that includes the galleries in that event in seperate folders. Please put that on the request list. :)

  2. April 9, 2012 at 2:28 pm

    Lou, can you try creating an event gallery for the wedding and then go into each gallery and collect the photos you want to offer as digital downloads and then when you set up the cart, just enable digital downloads for the items you offer, and nothing else? Just an idea.

  3. April 9, 2012 at 3:03 pm

    I wish Download all gave the options for resolution (low res, medium res, high res, original).

    • April 10, 2012 at 9:52 am

      Hi Kevin and while that’s not available now, we love the feedback. Would you mind voting for this on our forum? http://feedback.smugmug.com/

  4. April 9, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    I agree Lou. That would definitely make life easier!

  5. tajmutthall
    April 9, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    Where does it put the comments & keywords for the photos? That’s the most valuable thing htat I could download; I already have copies of the files locally. So how do I get the text?

  6. April 9, 2012 at 9:34 pm

    I love this feature! For subsets or multiple galleries I just make a smart gallery of what I want to share.

  7. Arik
    April 10, 2012 at 8:49 am

    It would be also nice to have an option to download your entire Smugmug collection or at least order a DVD.

    • April 10, 2012 at 10:03 am

      Hi Arik, we used to offer this feature and hope to provide this service again soon. However it is a service that costs, and the zip files in your gallery right now are free. But please vote for this on our feedback forums, if you will! http://feedback.smugmug.com/

  8. April 13, 2012 at 7:36 am

    I have a new gallery with 2 images in it and download all is greyed out. Is there a minimum number of images for the gallery to allow download all or is there a minimum amount of time the gallery has to be up?

  9. April 13, 2012 at 11:21 am

    Hi Kevin, there shouldn’t be a minimum number but we’re happy to take a look. Could you send a link to the gallery to our Support Heroes? http://help.smugmug.com We’ll get you fixed up.

  10. May 15, 2012 at 2:13 pm

    I love ‘download all’ – I use it all the time for my clients! One thing I do wish is that SmugMug would give us an option that would allow the link to only be clicked once so as to avoid having the images shared with anyone and everyone that the link might get passed on to. Is this possible??

  11. Darryl
    May 15, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    Lou Gonzalez :
    Ok I’ll have to try that but I’d still have to do that extra step for all of my clients galleries. I shoot about 20 weedings a year, each of which have about 6 galleries each, so I’d have to do that 120 times a year. Ugh.
    I have an idea. Maybe you can guys can integrate this feature it into Events someday. Right now I create an event that includes all of the client’s galleries. I send them one link to their event. It would be awesome to zip all the galleries in an event! Provide them one link to a single zip that includes the galleries in that event in seperate folders. Please put that on the request list.

    Note however that one huge zipfile can take significantly longer to download for 750-1000 large JPEGs (and if the connection dies halfway through, your client may have to start all over.) Also, depending on how you’ve created subcategories, it might be more organized for things to be stored in separate zipfiles and then folders once they’re unpacked — reception, ceremony, engagement, etc.

    • May 15, 2012 at 2:46 pm

      In Lightroom I compress my jpgs to 76. They look great and are much smaller. The jpgs range from 2-4mgb each so this would not be an issue for my clients. All of the file together range between 2-3 gb, which is really not a lot these days.

    • May 15, 2012 at 2:52 pm

      And I do post images in to galleries under a common subcategory for each client. Like so: http://photos.lifesharephoto.com/Weddings2011/09-30 So in this case I had to send the client 6 separate links. Ugh. I still need to try the smart gallery approach though to see if that works for me. It’s certainly a workaround but worth it if it’s more convenient for the client.

  12. Mike
    May 15, 2012 at 6:14 pm

    Love the feature! I’ve crashed and deleted pics I’ve needed…didn’t know I could retrieve the original from my gallery. A couple comments above me are also excellent ideas to look into to maybe improve the function. Keep up the good work over there…nobody’s perfect…but we’re getting close! :)

  13. Gerson
    May 16, 2012 at 1:20 am

    This is great and I will use the “Download All” feature in the future. What I would like to see is the ability for my customers (typically family and friends) to be able to highlight a the pictures they like and then download them all at the same time. When they click download the user would have to to select a folder just like any download. Optimally each file would be downloaded individually but I guess downloading a single zip would also do.

    Additionally if we could limit the resolution of the downloaded files that would be nice.

  14. July 12, 2012 at 6:22 am

    Has this feature just changed? When I click on download all, it now gives me an immediate download option of the zip. This is nice and all but how do I provide a link to my clients so they can download their photos themselves??? I used to provide the link you guys gave me via email to my clients. It appears that feature is gone now. Or am I missing it?

    • July 12, 2012 at 11:33 am

      Hi Lou, we send emails with links in them for large galleries, so that you don’t have to be left hanging while we bundle it up. But if your gallery is relatively small we’ll start the download right away. Shoot our Support Heroes an email with a link to the gallery and we’ll be happy to provide you with a sharable download link for you to pass on to clients. http://help.smugmug.com/

      • July 19, 2012 at 6:36 am

        It would be great to be able to grab the download link at any time. Maybe you can put it with all of the other quick links you provide under: Owner Share / Get a Link

        Please? :)

  15. July 19, 2012 at 3:58 am

    I am having the same problem as Lou here. Very large gallery, 500+ photos high res, and when I click “Download All” it does just that – automatically starts downloading a 1.5 GB zip file. Unfortunately I need a link I can email my clients to download all of the photos. I already have all the original photos, I surely don’t need to download them all again. Am I doing something wrong?

    • July 19, 2012 at 5:55 am

      Rachel, I found that when you go to a gallery and generate the link, and then later go back and do it again, the 2nd time you do it, it offers you the zip immediately for download. I had actually gone and generated my download link (and had forgotten). So what I thought was my 1st time, was actually my second time – which is why the zip was being offered to me. Did you by chance already generate the download links at a previous time? If so, that’s why.

      • July 19, 2012 at 6:11 am

        Ahh-ha! That makes sense Lou. And this is what is happening here. Thanks for the heads up! Now if only I can find the link….

        SMUGMUG: it would be great if we had both options available; ie: create/email the zip file links OR download zip file.

        This seems like it would make all of this far more simple. And for those of us that may need to create zip links more than once (maybe because we forgot we didn’t or can’t find the email with the links) this would be ideal.

  16. Angel
    October 4, 2012 at 6:51 am

    Some of my galleries are small so when I click on Download all it doesn’t send me a link that I can give to clients it just downloads them right to my computer. I wish there was an option to be able to have a link instead of it directly downloading to my computer.

    • October 4, 2012 at 10:44 am

      Hi Angel, can you shoot our Support Heroes a quick message with a link to the gallery from which you’re trying to bundle? We can get you the info you need. http://help.smugmug.com/

  17. Michael
    October 23, 2012 at 3:27 am

    I too am not getting the emails. Support for the zip file on the site would be MUCH easier, and allow me to work around this issue!

    • October 23, 2012 at 6:12 am

      Agreed! In my opinion the zip file link should be generated automatically when the gallery is created. Maybe it could be found in the get a link section of the gallery. Then maybe a button next to it labeled “Activate”. Once clicked it can email us when the zipe file URL is actually “live”. Then if we need it again, we could click on it again to regenerate a new link. I’m full of ideas. :)

    • October 23, 2012 at 10:12 am

      Michael and Lou, this is wonderful feedback. Thanks for sharing and I’ll be sure our product team sees your request. In the meantime would you weigh in on this on our feedback forums here? http://feedback.smugmug.com/

  18. December 10, 2012 at 12:12 pm

    I send the links to my clients. They frequently stop working before the two weeks. Is there a reason?

    • December 10, 2012 at 12:20 pm

      Hi, your files should be valid for the two weeks from the date you request it from your gallery’s Tools button. Could you shoot our Support Heroes a message describing (in detail, so we can pinpoint!) what your clients are seeing or experiencing when they click the link to retrieve your file? http://help.smugmug.com/

  19. March 4, 2013 at 6:15 am

    I love this feature and is incredibly useful… However, am I right in thinking that should a client want to download just a couple of shots from a whole gallery, that the only way we can facilitate that happening is by turning off the right click protection for the gallery?

    One way I found to get round it was creating a coupon to avoid the minute charge that is levied for downloads (to the tune of 1 pence a picture). Maybe you could add a feature whereby we could select, say, 10 pictures and then generate a link file simply for them..? Or are you going to suggest that I collect those photos into another separate gallery and then generate a link file for that…? Quite a lot of steps to do something quite simple… Can you advise?

    • March 4, 2013 at 10:47 am

      Hi Ed and thanks for weighing in. Right now disabling RCP is the easiest way to let clients download just one or two images. Otherwise yes we would normally suggest Collecting the several photos you want into another private gallery and creating a zip file for those. Hope this helps!

  20. Sheryl Kirksey
    November 18, 2013 at 11:15 am

    Thank you! Thank you!!!! I had puter work done and thought I saved all the edited images… NOT…. thank you for having this option. you have saved me tons of re-editing!!! I could just hug you …..

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