How to Run PhotoPrism on the Raspberry Pi

In this tutorial, we will be showing you how to run PhotoPrism on your Raspberry Pi.

Raspberry Pi PhotoPrism

PhotoPrism is an open-source and free photo app that uses AI to tag and categorize your photos on your Raspberry Pi.

One of the most promising features of PhotoPrism is its AI functionality. With this AI, the photo app can classify your photos, recognize the faces of your family and friends, and more.

Best of all, you don’t have to install native applications to view your photos stored with PhotoPrism. Built as a web app any modern web browser can run the website locally as if it was a native app on your device.

Being made available as a docker container getting PhotoPrism to run on the Raspberry Pi will be a straightforward process.

Equipment

Below you can find a list of the equipment we used to get PhotoPrism running on our Raspberry Pi.

Recommended

Optional

The following tutorial was tested on a Raspberry Pi 400 running the latest version of Raspberry Pi OS Bullseye 64-bit.

Preparing your Raspberry Pi for PhotoPrism

Before installing and running PhotoPrism on our Raspberry Pi, we must ensure we have everything we require installed.

Luckily with PhotoPrism being provided as a Docker container, we only need the Docker runtime and a tool to grab PhotoPrism’s config file.

1. Before installing Docker, we will update both our package list and installed packages.

All you need to do to update both is run the following command in the terminal.

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade

2. Now we are up to date, we can finally install the packages we need to run PhotoPrism on our Pi.

In our case, we can install both “docker-compose” and “wget” by using the following command in the terminal.

sudo apt install docker-compose wget

The docker-compose package contains the docker runtime as well as some additional software we need to run the software.

We are also ensuring that wget is installed on the system as we will use this tool to grab the “docker-compose.yml” file from the PhotoPrism GitHub.

Configuring the Docker-Compose file for PhotoPrism

The most complicated process of setting up PhotoPrism is configuring the “docker-compose.yml” file. Within this section, we will grab the sample config file and show you what you should be adjusting.

Getting Ready to Configure PhotoPrism for the Raspberry Pi

1. Start by using the mkdir command to create a directory where we will store this configuration file.

With the following command, you will create a directory called “photoprism” in your current user’s home directory.

mkdir ~/photoprism

2. With the directory created, you can now use the cd command to change into it.

cd ~/photoprism

3. Now that we are in the correct directory, our next step is to download the Docker composer file for PhotoPrism to our Raspberry Pi

Here we will use the wget tool we installed earlier to download the “docker-compose.yml” file to the current directory.

Please note the version of this command changes slightly if you are running a 32-bit or 64-bit system. We recommend that you use a 64-bit OS when following this tutorial.

64-Bit Operating System

wget https://dl.photoprism.app/docker/arm64/docker-compose.yml

32-Bit Operating System

wget https://dl.photoprism.app/docker/armv7/docker-compose.yml

Configuring PhotoPrism

1. Now that we have the docker-compose file here, we will want to make some adjustments to its configuration.

You can begin editing this file by using the following command.

nano docker-compose.yml

We like to use the nano text editor as it is relatively easy to use. You can use whichever text editor you feel most comfortable with.

2. The first option you will want to change within this configuration file is the initial password used for the admin panel.

Start by finding the following line within the file. You can use CTRL + W to search the file when using nano.

PHOTOPRISM_ADMIN_PASSWORD: "insecure"

Once you have found the above text, replace “insecure” with a secure password of your choosing. The password you choose must be at least eight characters long.

PHOTOPRISM_ADMIN_PASSWORD: "YOURPASSWORDGOESHERE"

3. With the password changed to something more secure, you can move on to configuring the volumes. Any additional folders you want accessible within PhotoPrism must be included as a volume.

All subdirectories of that folder will, of course, be accessible, so if you want to include an entire drive, you only need to add its mount path.

Within this file, you will want to find the following line. This gives you an example of how they are written and indicates where you need to add additional folders.

      # "/host/folder:/photoprism/folder"                # Example

Here the volume is specified with the left side (/host/folder) being the folder on your Raspberry Pi that you want to be mounted to the volume.

The right side (/photoprism/folder) is the location it will be made available within the container. When setting a new volume for PhotoPrism, the container path must always start with “/photoprism/“.

4. To showcase this, we will add a new volume to this list, mounting our external drive located at “/mnt/holidayphotos” to “/photoprism/holidayphotos“.

To add this line, we will add the following under the “volumes:” label.

      - "/mnt/holidayphotos:/photoprism/holidayphotos"

If you find this confusing, please comment below or check out the official PhotoPrism documentation on volumes.

5. Once you have finished making changes to the file, you can save and quit by pressing CTRL + X, followed by Y, and then the ENTER key.

Running PhotoPrism on the Raspberry Pi

Now that we have created our “docker-compose.yml” file getting PhotoPrism to run on the Raspberry Pi is very straightforward.

At this point, all we need to do is run a single command to get the photo app up and running.

1. For the following step to work, you will need to ensure you are still in the directory where we created the “docker-compose.yml” file.

If you are still in the correct place, you can now startup PhotoPrism on your Raspberry Pi by using the command below.

docker-compose up -d

2. The initial startup process for PhotoPrism can take some time as Docker needs to download all of the required container images.

Once the download process completes, PhotoPrism should be immediately started on your device.

Using the PhotoPrism Web Interface

Now that we have PhotoPrism installed on your Raspberry Pi, you can access its web interface. This part of the guide will show you how to access the web interface and give you a quick overview.

Accessing the PhotoPrism Web Interface

1. Before we begin you will need to know the IP address of your Pi to connect to it from elsewhere in your local network.

One of the easiest ways to get the IP for your device is to use the hostname command.

hostname -I

Docker generates several IP addresses for its internal usage. Therefore, your Pi’s local IP is typically the first one listed by this command.

2. Now that we know your Pi’s IP address, you can go to the following address in your web browser.

By default, PhotoPrism is listening on port 2342 on your Raspberry Pi.

http://YOURIPADDRESS:2342/

3. When you load up the PhotoPrism web interface, you will be asked to log in to an account. By default, this will be the “admin” account.

Using the text boxes in the middle of the screen (1.), type in “admin” as the username. Then for the password, use the one you specified within the “docker-compose.yml” file earlier in this guide.

Once you have typed in your login details, you can click the “SIGN IN” button (2.).

Login to PhotoPrism running on the Raspberry Pi

4. You will now be greeted by the PhotoPrism home page. If you are like us and only have empty folders, then the dashboard will be empty.

We will walk you through uploading photos to PhotoPrism later in this guide.

No Photos on PhotoPrism Dashboard

Viewing the PhotoPrism Settings Page

1. Getting to PhotoPrism’s settings page is a simple process and can be easily accessed using the sidebar.

In the sidebar, you should see a cog icon, click this icon to move to the settings page.

Change to Settings Page

2. Now that we are in the settings screen, let us explore each page and what the settings are used for.

The general settings page, as shown below, mainly focuses on options controlling the user interface. For example, you can use this to hide menus from the sidebar or change the theme and interface language.

General Settings Page

3. The “Library” options page lets you control how PhotoPrism handles your photos on the Raspberry Pi.

For example, you can control whether PhotoPrism should automatically create JPEGs for the photos you upload. Altern

Library Settings Page

4. The advanced tab contains what it says it does, advanced options.

These options allow you to configure some of the more complicated parts of PhotoPrism. For example, you can use this to disable certain functionality or control how PhotoPrism converts RAW files.

Advanced Settings Page

5. With the sync tab, you can control servers that you want to be synchronized to your Raspberry Pi’s instance of PhotoPrism.

You can also connect to PhotoPrism using WebDAV. WebDAV allows you to mount PhotoPrism as if it was a networked drive.

Sync Settings Page

6. The final options page is for the PhotoPrism account you used to log in. With this page, you can change the password of your account.

If you still use the password you configured when writing the “docker-compose.yml” file, then now is a good time to change it.

Account Settings Page

Uploading Photos to your Raspberry Pi with PhotoPrism

1. The PhotoPrism web interface allows you to upload photos directly from its interface to your Raspberry Pi.

Getting to the upload screen is as simple as clicking the cloud icon in the top-right corner of the interface.

Change to Upload Screen

2. You should now see the screen shown below displayed within your web interface.

The text box at the top of the page (1.) allows you to select or create new albums to store your new photos. If you want to create a new album, all you need to do is type in the name and press the ENTER key.

Once you are happy with your selected albums, click the “UPLOAD” button to begin uploading your photos to PhotoPrism.

Upload Photos to Raspberry Pi PhotoPrism

3. Uploading photos to PhotoPrism can take some time, after uploading, your Raspberry Pi will have to analyze each of them.

Once the process has finished, you should see your new images displayed within the web interface.

PhotoPrism successfully running on the Raspberry Pi

Conclusion

At this point in our Raspberry Pi project, you should now have the PhotoPrism photo app running and hopefully have uploaded some of your photos.

PhotoPrism is an impressive web app that allows you to categorize and present your photos without relying on a third-party service.

Please comment below if you have had any issues with getting PhotoPrism running on the Raspberry Pi.

If you liked this project, be sure to check out our many other Raspberry Pi projects.

2 Comments

  1. Avatar for Richard
    Richard on

    I am intrigued. Is it possible for PhotoPrism to import the photos off my Asustor NAS and then export them back to another directory on the NAS after they have been processed?

    1. Avatar for Emmet
      Emmet on
      Editor

      Hi Richard,

      As long as your Asustor NAS supports WebDAV then yes, I believe it is fully possible to do that.

      Cheers,
      Emmet

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