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Welcome to the Camera Life support Wiki. Pages here should explain how to use Camera Life and how to make the most of it. Please feel free to contribute to this Wiki!
Camera Life
Organize your memories
Developer Will Entriken
Programming Language PHP
Operating System OS Independent
Latest Version 2.6.3b4
Intended audience End users, developers
License Artistic License, GNU General Public License (GPL)


Camera Life - An Online Photo Gallery Manager

Camera Life is a PHP powered photo organizer. It can be installed on your website just like any other PHP based website add-on such as Wordpress blog. Camera Life is easy to customize to suit to your sites look and feel.

  • Camera Life is a SourceForge open source project and it is available as a free download.


Camera Life installed on your website enables

  • Automatic organizing of photos with folder and albums (based on keywords)
  • Uploading of photos on Mac, Windows, Linux or other operating systems
  • Uploading and storing of photos on
    • your local server
    • Amazon S3
    • Flickr
    • a remote FTP/HTTP/SSH server
  • Automatic photo rescanning
  • Automatic iPhone support with a simplified interface
  • Easy customization with your choice of templates
  • Easy interfacing that uses AJAX when required but also works without JavaScript
  • Browsing of photos by file hierarchy
  • Editing the description of each photo
  • Renaming and tagging of your photos
  • Automatic recognition of the pattern of relation of photos and presents the user with photos that are related to the one currently being viewed.

Prerequisites for Setting up Camera Life

The Camera Life setup process requires

  • A server that enables
    • PHP with MySQL support
    • GD with JPEG support
    • Content Negotiation support
  • A database
Setting up a server

Download a server that installs Apache, PHP and My SQL on your computer. Recommmended: XAMPP

Creating a Database
  1. Type on your browsers address bar

  2. Assign a name for the database in the box and click Create.
    Image:create new database- demo.gif
  3. From the toolbar select Privileges
    File:click privileges.gif
  4. From the user root clickFile:editprivileges.gif
  5. Scroll down and create a new database user. Fill in appropriate login information for Username, Host and Password.
  6. Click Go

Setting up Camera Life

Setting up of Camera Life involves the following two steps

Installing Camera Life

  1. Download the Camera Life zip or tar file from
  2. Unzip/untar the Camera Life package
  3. Point your browser to the downloaded folder, that is cut and paste the Camera Life folder to the htdocs folder (example c:xampp/htdocs)
  4. On your internet explorers address bar type localhost/cameralife/ or The welcome page will be seen.

You can view a installation tutorial of Camera Life at this link

Initializing Database

Follow the links on the Camera Life server page and fill in information as entered in #Creating a Database section

Instructions on Initializing Database For linux and cPanel users

Working with Camera Life

  • Home Page

This is the entry page users would see when they first visit your site. It shows some random photos and allows you to search or browse photos.

  • Administrator Page

This is the page view for administrators to modify the website. You can change the layout of the site, download new themes, and undo edits that were made by users.

Note : The admin password is the Camera Life admin password created in the #initializing database section.


Registering a New User

  • To register a new user click File:register a new user.gif

Adding Camera Life to your website

You can store photos in the Upload Image:upload.gif folder on

  • Your local server
  • Amazon S3
  • Flickr
  • A remote FTP/HTTP/SSH server

Photos added to your "photostore" will be recognized by Camera Life and cached/thumbnailed.

You can add Camera Life to your site by editing the

Installing themes

  • Camera Life supports numerous [themes]
  • Some include AJAX support.
  • There is a custom interface for iPhone/iPod touch users.

To install themes

  1. Click the administer button image:administer button.gif
  2. Choose the required theme from the Appearance panel to install a chosen theme image:appearance edit.gif

Organizing Photos

In the Camera Life photos organizer

  • Photos are browsable by file hierarchy
  • You can edit the description for each photo and add tags.
  • You can then create Albums, which are groups of photos containing some search term.
  • As you rename and tag photos, they are automatically added to or removed from Albums.

Camera Life automatically learns how photos are related and present the user with photos that are related to the one currently showing. image:ordering photos.gif

Creating Albums

On Camera Life, photos automatically are allotted to the albums that they share a common name, description, and theme with. Thus, photos with similar name or description reside on the album similar to their type. Also, see an illustrative and detailed note on albums

  1. Add a few photos into the Camera Life system, and fill in their descriptions.
  2. Selectimage:create an album .gif
  1. Fill in the fields appropriately Image:organizing with common keywords.gif

Administrating Site Activities


All actions on the site have an audit trail that can be undone.

Allowing Site Visitors to Comment/Edit

You can allow site users to

  • Edit photo description

Click onImage:Rename_.gif to edit a photo name or to add keywords.

  • Rate the photos

Photos can be rated by choosing one, two, three, four or five star rating by rolling the mouse over the preferred star rating Image:rating.gifImage:rating the photos.gif

  • Comment on photos

Fill in comments in the text box and click Image:post comment.gif

  • Flag photos for deletion

Photos can be flagged for deletion based upon indecency, bad photography, bracketing or uninterestingness.Image:report.gif

Integrating with other Plug-ins

The Camera Life code is modular and extensible. It enables you to

  • Add themes/iconset to your site
  • Integrate Camera Life with your existing CMS or template system
  • Interface with microformats with AJAX support
  • Photocast through a RSS feed.

Camera Life is compatible with the following applications so you can use their tools to upload photos to your website

It can be integrated to a blog in two ways

Upgrading an Older Version of Camera Life

  1. Download the latest version from
  2. Compare the new versions database structure visible in setup/install.mysql to the previous versions database structure.
  3. Edit modules/, using modules/ as a template
  4. Replace the rest of the old versions files (all files except install.mysql) with the new versions files, by cut and paste method.
  5. Register a username admin following the steps in #Registering a User
  6. Type on your address bar
  7. Click the appropriate database from the left hand side listing
  8. Click the SQL tab
  9. Run the SQL query UPDATE users SET auth=5 WHERE username='admin'Image:submitquery.gif
  10. Type in your address bar

Improving Camera Life

The Camera Life PHP code is modular. We look forward to your patches, suggestions and feedbacks.
Project Goals

  • Release often
  • Document code
  • Add more themes
  • Better photo modification features
  • Integrate with
    • Content management systems
    • Picasa and Digikam

For specific tasks such as code patches, see the todo tag in the PHP documentation of Camera Life

Sharing your Website with the Camera Life Team

Share your website with the Camera Life team. Send your site link to

If you like, we may feature your site on the Camera Life webpage.

Contacting Customer Support

The developers at Camera Life look forward to your queries, comments and feedbacks.

Please contact us at


Camera Life is licensed under the terms of the GNU General Public License.

  • © 2001-2009 Will Entriken
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