An EXIF editor
is a photo editor or any digital photo software that will allow to edit or modify some of the EXIF infos of your Jpeg image files.
Most image viewers and photo editors that know about EXIF info have only EXIF viewer abilities.
If you want to modify the content of some EXIF fields, you need a software with EXIF editor abilities.
Some programs will let you modify a few EXIF fields or other metadata fields, like the comment field or the description field.
Indeed there are several kinds of metadata in a photographic image file. Among them the EXIF
metadata, the IPTC
metadata, the GPS
metadata, the XMP
An ideal metadata editor would be able to edit all of them, not only the EXIF metadata.
But many people are just speaking of EXIF data or EXIF editors (as a simplification) when indeed they mean a metadata editor which would be able to edit any metadata,
whether they are in the EXIF block or not.
Many modern digital cameras save some metadata (EXIF infos, IPTC, GPS, XMP data) in the image file, when saving the photos in the JPEG file format or in the TIFF file format.
The EXIF, IPTC, XMP metadata contain information about the photo and the settings of the camera when the photo was taken.
E.g. the shutter speed or exposure time, the aperture, the focal length, if the flash light has been fired or not etc...
I am still looking for a convenient, easy to use, photo viewer software with extended EXIF editor (sorry, metadata editor) ability.
Not one that let you just modify the comment field only. If I find a "jewel", I will mention it on this page.
Command Line Tools
is a free command line tool that is able to read and write EXIF fields and much more.
It is accompanied by a very detailed documentation about all kind of metadata that you can find in image files, video files and audio files.
It reads EXIF, GPS, IPTC, XMP, JFIF, MakerNotes, GeoTIFF, ICC Profile, Photoshop IRB, FlashPix, AFCP and ID3 and more...
It writes EXIF, GPS, IPTC, XMP, JFIF, MakerNotes, ICC Profile, Photoshop IRB, AFCP and more...
ExifTool is able to write to all image files in a given folder (directory) in a batch process, at once.
is written in Perl and therefore it is platform independent. You can use it with Linux, Mac and Windblows.
ExifTool functions can also be called from within a Perl script, if you add use Image::ExifTool;
at the top of the Perl script.
ExifTool supports the following metadata formats among others :
EXIF, GPS, IPTC, XMP, JFIF, GeoTIFF, ICC Profile, AFCP , ID3,
the maker notes of most digital cameras from
Canon, Casio, FujiFilm, GE, HP, JVC/Victor, Kodak, Leaf, Minolta/Konica-Minolta, Nikon, Olympus/Epson, Panasonic/Leica, Pentax/Asahi, Reconyx, Ricoh, Samsung, Sanyo, Sigma/Foveon, Sony.
gThumb is an image viewer with some EXIF editor abilities
gThumb is an image viewer for the Gnome Desktop, but it is working under many Linux Desktops like XFCE, LXDE, KDE.
Earlier versions of gThumb did not show a navigable folder tree like we would be awaiting it from a user friendly image viewer,
and could only edit the comment field IPTC Caption-Abstract
The gTumb version 2.14.3 (included in Ubuntu 12.04 and many other distros) has a navigable folder tree and is able to edit the most often used metadata fields,
like Description (IPTC Caption-Abstract
field), Title, Place, Tags, Rating, Copyright, Credit, Country, State/Province, City, Language.
Now it comes rather close to the jewel I am looking for, except for the still limited amount of metadata fields it can write to. For every day use it is perfect.
To write into more exotic metadata fields, I still recommend the command line tool EXIFTool or just write a custom perl script calling EXIFTool functions.
ExifToolGUI, a photo viewer with metadata editor abilities
ExifToolGUI is a graphical user interface, specially built around the command line tool ExifTool described above.
It has a user friendly layout. It can not
do everything that the command line tool can do, just the most common tasks.
It works well under Windows, but unfortunately, it doesn't launch any more in the Wine under Linux.
Exifer, a photo editing center with EXIF editor abilities
I call it a photo editing center because starting out from Exifer, it is very convenient to backup EXIF data,
then to work on photos with your photo editor of choice and to recover the exif data afterwards.
This allows you to use the photo editor that you prefer for the image modification you want to perform, whether it keeps the EXIF data or not.
Exifer lets you edit or modify the EXIF fields
Description, Author, Copyright
, as well as the 3 dates,
Date taken, Date digitized, Date modified
even in a batch process
Furthermore, Exifer lets you edit more than 30 IPTC EXIF fields.
Of course it has EXIF backup and restore functions, can generate an EXIF preview (thumbnail) and can update the EXIF image size values.
More at my personal pros and cons list
PowerExif is an EXIF editor that let you modify any EXIF field
It is likely the only GUI-tool (graphical user interface tool as opposed to command line tools) that let you edit any EXIF field.
It is not the jewel I am looking for, since it is not the typical image viewer (with EXIF editing abilities) as I described above.
As I wrote above, I am regularly searching for the hidden jewel, ideally a super user friendly photo viewer with a really extended EXIF editor ability and that possibly could run a batch.
If I find that worthy EXIF editor software, you will read about it on this page.
If you are a hobby photographer who likes to keep track of values like aperture, exposure time, focal length, etc...
and would like to add your description, author or copyright mention into the metadata you will appreciate the benefit of software with EXIF editor (sorry, metadata editor) abilities.
As mentioned above, most people will just speak about EXIF when indeed they mean metadata.
Even the most versatile command line tool is named ExifTool and not MetadataTool,
even though it is able to read and write almost any kind of metadata, far more than just only the EXIF data.
I recommend you to read the following related pages:
the EXIF viewer page
the keeping EXIF tags page
telling what photo editors really keep when you work on photos.