Friday, January 20, 2012

Google+ Presents Problems with Google Picasa Web Albums

A note to all readers of this specific Post about using Picasa with Google+:
I now use Picasa 3.9 with Google+. Over time, meaning from January 20, 2012 when I wrote this article, I have learned how to send my albums to family and friends using the Google+ program.

I believe what we all wish to do is move forward as technology not only changes, but improves the way we accomplish anything. That is why I am posting this note and sharing how I have moved forward with what I have learned and can share with others.

What I have done is to keep my Google+ subscription because as Google+ stated, at least at one time, that if someone totally unsubscribed to their program, that person would not be able to recreate their subscription using their original information. In Google+ I make al of my settings "To Me" and nothing goes out to the circles I created at first. I then work my way through the options for my albums in Google+ until I come to the option that I can send my photos or album via email addresses. I can send the photos or albums as attachments to an email, or I can email the Google+ link for others to open the photos or albums. 

The information below should also still work if you do not wish to see your photos in Picasa upload to Google+ albums.

I have had to work through several problems and processes to possess, retain, and use the best options for my needs to send my online Google Picasa Web Albums to families and friends since upgrading to Picasa Version 3.9 with Google+.

I was too quick to subscribe to Google+ on my laptop that offers the new Picasa Version 3.9 without realizing the consequences of my rush. I did not realize that I would not be able to send Picasa Web Albums to family and friends via email, not be able to post Picasa Web Albums to Facebook, or not be able to export my Picasa Web Albums to my desktop. If you find that my assessment is incorrect, please let me know.

The only option given to Google Picasa Google+ users is to send a Picasa Web Album to circles of friends at Google+.

At first, I was frustrated and decided I would delete my Google+ membership. However, when I read the consequences of removing my Google+ membership, I decided against that move.

On January 8 on my Facebook page, I wrote, “Anyone else dissatisfied with Google+ and the fact that if you use Picasa for maintaining your photographs, if you upgrade to Picasa 3.9, you lose the ability to easily locate your Picasa Web Albums?

Instead, pictures will show by default in Google+. For this reason, I thought I would downgrade my Google+ account, not delete it.

Read the following explanation from Google+ Help to understand why I do not want to choose Option 3. Instead, I will choose Option 1 or 2 and hope that will keep my Picasa web folders where I want them. Go to:
Downgrade from Google+ - Google+ Help

“If you want to disable Google+, you have several options, ranging from temporary to permanent.
Option 1: Change your profile visibility settings to hide everything except your name and photo from public view. With this option, you can hide the content that appears on your profile without deleting or losing access to anything you've already created. The stuff you've shared will still be accessible by those you shared with.
Option 2: Downgrade your Google+ account, which will delete your profile and remove your Google+ posts, circles, and other content. You'll still be able to access Gmail and most other Google services.
Option 3: Delete your Google account. You'll lose access to all Google services and existing data requiring a Google Account. If you use Gmail, your Gmail address can't be reused.

To downgrade your Google+ profile:
Click your full name or email address in the Google bar.
Click Account settings.
Click the Account overview tab.
Click Delete profile and remove associated social features.”

In the end, I did not choose to use Google+ Option 1, 2, or 3 to disable, downgrade, or delete my Google+ account.

With Picasa Version 3.9 I cannot send my Picasa Web Albums to anyone unless they have signed up with Google+. There is no option to send web album invitations to people who have email addresses, without other social media. There is also no option to send web albums to another social media presence such as Facebook or Twitter.

Another flaw I discovered with Picasa Version 3.9 and Google+ is that I cannot download a Google+ Web Album to the online Picasa program.  I processed my imported pictures to a Google+ Web Album before creating a folder for those pictures on the online Picasa program.

My solution now is to retrieve the original pictures from the My Pictures Folder on the C Drive and import them into the online Picasa program again. I am thankful I can “start again” and choose some pictures to send to Facebook, export some to the desktop on my laptop or desktop computer, or order some from online vendors.

What gave me the idea of returning to Picasa Version 3.8 is that Picasa Version 3.8 remained on my desktop. I discovered that I can use the email, Facebook, export, and Google+ options with Picasa Version 3.8. I can send my Picasa Version 3.8 Web Albums that are viewable on any computer I sign into, with Picasa as email invitations.

Here is my solution: So far I have "fixed" my Picasa problem with Google+. I installed the previous version of Picasa that will allow me to send my Picasa Web Albums to family members via email address. The newest Picasa download version does not give the option to send invitations to view Picasa pictures using family or friends' email addresses, only to Google+ Circles.

Here is the website I used to go back one version to find Version 3.8 on January 18, 2011:

The description from is as follows:
“Picasa is marketed as being easy to use and it offers many one click effects such as color enhancement, red eye reduction and cropping. Other features include slide shows, printing and image timelines. Pictures can be organized into albums. Albums can be organized into collections. Pictures can be rearranged in albums by drag and drop. Images can be resized and exported for external use, be e-mailed or printed. There is also an integrated facility to order photo prints.

One fundamental principle of Picasa is that it never overwrites original images. This means that any changes applied to images using Picasa are stored only as differences relative to the original file, and only appear within Picasa. To see any changes in other software, the user must Export the images.”

At some point, I will probably look for Download Picasa 3.8 Build 117.43 as it was the latest Picasa 3.8 Version that included:
  • Fixed importing from scanners.
  • Fixed Backup and Restore creating duplicate .ini files
according to the Picasa and Picasa Web Albums Release Notes:

I am not an Internet whiz kid by training or guru by experience.  I share this information in case it will help someone else who is having the same difficulty. Please make a comment if this helped you, or if you have a different solution to my problem. I appreciate your input.


  1. Great post! I had the same problem and I've downgraded to 3.8.9 as well. Google should stop to shove their crappy Google+ down people's throats!

  2. Thank you a lot! You saved me lots of hours trying to find a solution myself! I had some minor problems because Picasa automatically updated to the newest version, but once I changed that it all seems to be working as expected. I agree with Anonymous #1: Google should not force us to use Google+ if we do not want to :(

  3. WOW !!! Thanks a bunch - I thought I was loosing my mind when I could not figure out how to download my albums ...

    Oh and here is a MAC download link

  4. You can still use Picasa 3.9 and send emails for Web Albums, but it's not as convenient as it used to be, namely you must share from the web albums.

    First, to get at your web albums, you should manually go to the website:

    Then navigate to your album, and in the right column click the "Share" button.
    The popup is still only for sharing to Google+, but the last link on the bottom line is "Share via email only".
    Click that, and you can share by email.

    Inconvenient, I know, but if you want to be able to use the features of Picasa 3.9, this will let you.
    For me, I can't live without having the name tags written directly into the files (rather than the Picasa Database).

  5. Bless you. I cannot thank you enough for this!

  6. So true, excellent post! Thank you.

    I refrained from joining Google+ for that very reason.

    Not that I was smart, I simply saw others struggling and regretting having lost Picasa as a result of that switch.

    Sure, there are complex work-arounds. But why bother if Picasa is working properly and Google+ is just a slightly more modern design with a lot less useful functionality. Sad to see Google mess up once again.

    Your post will hopefully warn many more.

  7. there is a simpler way, just add "noredirect=1" to your picasa album url, as in -

  8. Google+ DOES allow you to share by a link. While viewing your album in Google+, click the 'More' button at the top. The first option is 'Share via link'. A popup will appear and give you a link that you can copy and paste into an e-mail or whatever.
    My problem is that when I put that link (generated by Google+) into a Facebook post, the post has no thumbnail photo. Facebook posts containing a link to a Picasa web album DO present a thumbnail.
    Thanks to the above commentor (Robert R. May 27, 2012) who revealed to me how I can still access the photos I have uploaded since joining Google+ in the old Picasa Web albums format.
    I like the Google+ format for photos just fine. However I really wish I could make a nice looking Facebook post out of my Google+ albums!!

  9. I stumbled across this post while looking for some other information, and wanted to let you know that you absolutely can still share with anyone through email! In addition to sharing the link, as the previous poster commented, you can just click on the "Share on Google +" button, then when it says "add circles or people to share with" just type in email addresses. I believe your contacts in gmail will come up as you type. You can also add any email address to your circles, not just people who have signed up with Google+, or even just people on Gmail, truly anyone! And they will get your post or share via email rather than their Google+ feed. I know this is an old post, but if you still haven't taken the plunge, you might try it again.

  10. Thanks too!!!!!! I have in my PC Picasa 3.9 and with web albums link, but when I DL picasa for my mother, it gave me only google+ :((
    No its ok :)

  11. Thanks a lot of!
    I have Picasa 3.9 and with web albums link, but when I today DL the same for my mother, it gave only google+ :(
    Thanks to your post she has now eb albums link too :)

  12. Another option for sharing directly to Picasa:

    - Log into your account
    - Open the album you want to share
    - From the tabs across the top of the album, directly above the photos choose "Actions > Album Properties"
    - Change "Visibility" at the bottom of the box to "Limited, Anyone with the link"
    - Save your changes

    Now when you click "Link to this album" or "Link to this photo" on the right you should get a direct link to the album or photo in Picasaweb that you can send to anyone via e-mail, post in Facebook etc. The link should look similar to this:

    The link should open in Picasaweb rather than Google+.

    Note that anyone with this link will also be able to browse any albums that you have set permissions to "Public on the web".

    I hope this helps.

  13. P.S. - thanks for making this post :)

  14. Excellent advice!!

  15. Like another poster, I have stumbled across this while looking for other info...glad I did! Can anyone comment as to whether any info or edits created in Picasa post G+ update will be lost if one were to download/install 3.9 and revert to non-G+ version? Thank you in advance for your comments. JP


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