How to batch resize photos for Google+

Update: With the release of Google Photos the information in this article is no longer relevant.

With the rise of cloud-based storage services (OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive) it’s fairly handy to be able to store all your photos online as opposed to backing them up on physical media. The one caveat among the cloud-based storage services is that you can only store so much before you’re required to pay for additional space. Thankfully if you don’t mind sacrificing some resolution then you can leverage Google+ to store an unlimited number of photos. Now right off the bat you get 15GB of storage space with Google Drive. When you upload images to Google+ that have a resolution greater than 2048×2048 they take away from your drive space. And so the catch here is that you have unlimited storage space for photos that are 2048×2048 or smaller. You have the option for Google+ to resize images to meet this resolution when uploading but I’ve found that the resulting images contain more artifacting than I’d like to see. So the solution is to resize all your photos manually before uploading them. This allows one to resize their photos with a 100% JPEG compression quality (Google+ only cares about resolution so you may as well get the best out of it, right?).

To perform this task you could use an expensive tool like Adobe Photoshop but in this case I’ll show how you can batch resize your photos using ImageMagick (a free set of tools for manipulating/converting images).

Installing ImageMagick

For Windows users:

  • Install the appropriate binaries from here
  • During installation make sure the box is checked for Add application directory to your system path

For Linux (Ubuntu/Debian) users:

  • ImageMagick is included in the software repository so you just need to run the following commands to install it.
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install imagemagick

Resizing the photos

Next open up a command prompt/terminal and navigate to where the photos are that you want to resize. There you’ll want to create sub-folder to store the resized photos. Then run the following command replacing output with the name of the sub-folder you created.

mogrify -format jpg -verbose -auto-orient -resize 2048x2048 -quality 100% -path 'output' *.JPG

Once that’s done just go into the sub-folder and your photos should all be resized and ready to go.

  • James

    I made to help with this. Nothing to download! 🙂

    A few limitations (see the “known issues”) for the time being, but those should be gone within the next few weeks.

  • Rui

    Hi Ducky Pond. 5 months old post. Hope I can still grab your attention.
    This seems very similar to what I am trying to achieve, the only main difference being that some of my photos are already below the 2048 x 2048 and separated in sub-folders. Also I’d like to run mogrify from ./~ instead of having to cd into each folder and running mogrify from under each folder.
    I’m on Archlinux ARM (cli only) and I am a linux newbie. Linux was the only way to go with an SBC which only has an ARM cpu @800MHz and 128MB.
    Thanks in advance for any tips you can throw this way 😉