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6/28/19
Stuck with THOUSANDS OF DUPLICATE PHOTOS after using "Backup and Sync" from computer. 1 Recommended Answer 16 Replies 74 Upvotes
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I've been using Google photos for years and have always automatically uploaded my iPhone photos to Google photos. I just recently downloaded the Google "Backup and Sync" program on my Macbook and set it up to automatically upload the photos from my computer to Google photos (because why wouldn't I want that extra safety blanket?). The problem is, I also back up my iPhone photos onto my computer, so when the photos from my computer started uploading the photos, I realized 99% of them were already in Google photos. I thought it would be fine because of Google Photo's "duplicate detector" feature that I thought would prevent any duplicates from being uploaded because it's apparently supposed to be able to detect duplicates and not upload them. However, that didn't happen, and now I'm stuck with thousands of duplicates taking up space for no reason in Google photos. I then tried to fix it another way, because I thought I'd be able to just mass select all the photos that uploaded from my computer, however, Google photos doesn't let you sort the photos by upload date. They only let you sort photos by the actual date the photos were taken, so I can't just see all of the duplicates next to one another and massively delete them. There's no way I would go through thousands of photos and select them one by one, so is there any way I can somehow get rid of these duplicates in Google photos? Thank you.
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6/28/19
Nasty, but it just was quite stupid not testing a manual upload before to see what happens. 
Apparently some metadata in these iPhone-copies was changed a bit and then they get uploaded instead of blocked as you would expect indeed (unless you did a lot of personal editing on pc like typing captions). 

You can see the recently uploaded at https://photos.google.com/search/_tra_ 
But perhaps they will be mixed with pictures from your normal camera. 

If your upload setting was at High quality, the dups will take no additional storage and I would leave them in place. 

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6/28/19
Take care with deleting: check the setting on B&S and change to "Don't delete everywhere" - else the originals on pc may get deleted also etc. etc.
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6/28/19
Forgot to say: the other cause ot these duplicates maybe that you have chosen Original quality in the B&S app, while the old uploads from iPhone were on High Quality. 
If so, then these dups will take storage indeed. 
You only can see the difference while looking to the infopanel of individual pics like shown below on https://photos.google.com 



The MP's will not differ (below 16 MP), but the MB's of the High Quality uploads will be much lower then Original Quality uploads. So then you have to decide which of the two can be deleted via the trashbin on top.
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6/29/19
Thanks for trying to help. The pictures are the exact same on all devices: no captions, no editing, same picture quality, etc. I have my phone and computer both set up to upload at "high quality" so they shouldn't be different at all and therefore I'm not worried about storage. What's annoying is the fact that I see 2-4 of every single photo is my library (they started duplicating again and again until I turned Google photos uploading off in B&S. 

I've tried that link as I saw that online too, however it doesn't work because I don't see any of the duplicate photos uploaded recently there, I only see the few photos that were actually new from my computer. And they are also mixed with pictures from my camera roll as you said. 

I was hoping for an easier way to delete the duplicates, or else I'll probably just leave them. I would expect a company like Google to be able to implement some sort of duplicate recognition feature that they can add to the "assistant" features or something. I love Google, and know they are constantly making efforts to improve, so I'm hopeful that something like this will be introduced soon.
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2/25/20
I use ICloud to backup photos that are on the phone. I get 50 Gigs and it covers the phone in case of damage or loss.
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