"Writing and editing meta information in files"
ExifTool is a command line application for viewing and editing meta information of image, audio and video files. It supports a vast variety of file formats and metadata types, such as EXIF, GPS, IPTC, XMP, JFIF, GeoTIFF and ID3. Features of this program include geotagging images from GPS track log files, renaming and organizing files in directories by any kind of meta information as well as processing directory trees.
There is no setup file for this program. All that is required is to have Perl installed, so that once you download and extract the full distribution you can run it using command line arguments. Windows users who don’t have Perl installed can download a stand-alone executable, so if you belong to that user group then go ahead and grab that executable instead.
ExifTool has no interface since it is a command line tool. If you downloaded the full distribution then use Perl to run it, however if you downloaded the stand-alone executable then drag and drop a file into it and the command line will open and give you information regarding the file’s meta information. If you double click on the executable itself, then the command line open and give you a detailed list with all the options and examples.
The program can both read and edit a ton of meta information, including EXIF, GPS, IPTC, XMP, JFIF, MakerNotes, ICC Profile, Photoshop IRB, AFCP and many others. Meta information can be deleted too (individually, in groups or altogether). Some of the supported file formats are 3GP, ASF, BMP, FLAC, FLV, JPEG, MKV, MP3, MP4, PNG, RAW and ZIP. When editing an image file, a backup of the original image is created to ensure the safety of your file.
Geotagging from GPS track log files is one of the implemented features, with the supported track log file formats being GPX, NMEA, KML, IGC, Garmin XML and TCX, Magellan eXplorist PMGNTRK, Honeywell PTNTHPR and Winplus Beacon .TXT. In addition, the reverse operation is possible; you can create GPS track logs from GPS tags.
Extraction of thumbnail images, preview images and JPEG images from RAW is supported. For each image file a text output file can be created.
Date and time attributes (created/last modified) can be edited, plus date and time values can be shifted to match image timestamps.
Another big advantage is that ExifTool has multilingual output. It is translated into Czech, German, English, English (Canada), English (United Kingdom), Spanish, Finnish, French, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Dutch, Polish, Swedish, Russian, Turkish, Chinese (PRC) and Chinese (Taiwan).
It is certainly the most complete meta information viewer/editor available. It is unbelievably fast, powerful and stable, whilst there are no traces of bugs and problems.
Exiv2 (free) is a C++ library and command line utility to view and edit image metadata (in contrast to ExifTool, where video and audio files are supported as well). It is significantly weaker when compared to ExifTool.
If you want to enhance ExifTool and add a GUI, then you could try out ExifToolGUI. It's free and can be an important tool for those who can’t stand command line utilities.
One of the best tag manipulation utilities, if not the best. If you need something that can do everything, try ExifTool. It’s far away from being a disappointment.
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