Welcome! This page contains information and resources for journalists and bloggers.
Contact me via firstname.lastname@example.org if you need more information or if you have questions not answered here.
Background and History
photools.com is the web presence of Mario M. Westphal, the developer of IMatch and IMatch Anywhere™.
Mr. Westphal has a background in photography and software development and worked for small and large companies, web agencies and startups. He currently lives in Germany.
When he could not find a good software to manage his constantly growing image collection, he decided to build one. And so IMatch was born. Today, IMatch is used by a large user base from over 70 countries.
User Base / Target Audience
IMatch users come from all fields: amateur and professional photographers, videographers, small photo agencies, scientists, artists, librarians, collectors, artisans, historians, institutional and corporate users, plane and train spotters and more.
Basically everyone who needs to manage large amounts of images and other digital assets on a budget.
IMatch is considered one of the leading Digital Asset Management Systems (DAM) for Windows available today.
IMatch focuses on digital images and videos, but handles other file formats like audio files, PDF, text or Office documents as easily. This enables users to manage their entire project in IMatch, not only images or video files.
IMatch supports over 100 file formats (Image, RAW, video, audio, Office, PDF, …) and user-defined formats.
It provides strong and standard-compliant metadata support and offers many distinct features not available in other DAM systems. See the full feature list below for more information.
IMatch Anywhere™ is an add-on for IMatch, enabling users to access their IMatch database remotely, from any device with a modern web browser. This product is designed to be used with home or company networks, allowing multiple users to cooperate and share digital assets using IMatch Anywhere WebServices™. An affordable and easy to maintain multi-user DAM solution.
All trial versions are fully-functional and work for 30-days after installation. No registration required.
If you need more than 30 days of testing for your article or post, please contact me for about a press license.
High-Resolution IMatch Screen Shots and Logos
Here are some IMatch screen shots you can use in your publication or blog.
Download the photools.com and IMatch Logo Set.
ZIP file with vector graphics in SVG format.
Some quick links for your convenience.
User Reviews for IMatch
The renowned Gardner Capterra Website has several dozen reviews for IMatch. Real reviews from real IMatch users.
Here is a list of all major features and functions in IMatch. Links to the corresponding topics in the IMatch help system are included where applicable. This makes it easy for you to get more information about these features and functions.
|License and Support
|Free trial version downloads and pricing information.
IMatch is distributed by MyCommerce / DigitalRiver.
|Perpetual license, no subscription.
|Available since 1998.
|Free support directly from the developer and via the IMatch user community.
|Updates are free for the purchased version. Updates are shipped every 6 to 8 weeks.
Updates usually include new features and enhancements, not just some bug fixes.
|Fair discounts for users with suitable licenses for major upgrades (released every 12 to 18 months).
See Update & Upgrade policy for details.
|User interface available in English and Deutsch (official) and translations into Nederlands and Português provided by volunteers.
|IMatch requires Windows 10 or later. See hardware and software requirements for details.
|It easily handles up to one million assets per database (on suitable computer systems).
Typically, users manage between 100,000 and 300,000 assets. Corporate users manage between 500,000 and 3 million assets.
|IMatch does not require a specific file system layout and it does not move your assets into a proprietary database.
IMatch manages files where they are, making it immediately compatible with all your other software.
|Supports RAW image formats via Windows WIC codecs and LibRaw integration.
|Supports over 150 image, video, audio, PDF, Office and other file formats. User-defined file formats are also supported.
|Cooperates with and integrates all common image editors, RAW processors and other software.
|IMatch is very performant and has a moderate resource footprint. It utilizes multiple processor cores by distributing complex operations across all cores automatically. It uses the graphic card for hardware-accelerated super-fast image display.
|Indexing selected or all folders on disks and other storage media.
Indexing files on cloud storage (files must be accessible for Windows).
|Create, copy, move, rename and delete folders. Batch creation of entire folder hierarchies.
|Copy, move, rename and delete files.
|Powerful Renamer feature for renaming files based on patterns, metadata, date & time and variables.
|Distributing files into folders using patterns and variables, with dynamic creation of folder hierarchies on-demand.
Typical use-cases: Create date-based folder structures from files, automatic backups of original files on secondary disk, …
|File system monitoring to detect new files in managed folders and files deleted/modified by external applications.
Automatic re-import of modified files and indexing of new files. Files deleted or renamed/moved by external applications are marked as off-line. Users can remove them from IMatch, or show the system the new location / file name via the relocate command.
|User-configurable buddy file management to keep original and associated files together during move, copy, rename and delete.
Use-cases: keep different versions of an image together, deal with ‘config’ or ‘workspace’ files/folders produced by RAW processors etc.
|On-demand checksum-based file verification to detect and report corrupted files.
|XMP-compatible rating and labeling, including file rejection.
|See Metadata for Beginners for information about how and where IMatch uses metadata.
|Full support for legacy IIM IPTC, XMP IPTC Core and IPTC Ext (See the official test results for IMatch on the IPTC.org web site).
|XMP, EXIF, GPS, ID3 (MP3), PDF, Office and Open/LibreOffice, QuickTime metadata and many more.
|Automatic synchronization and migration between native EXIF/IPTC/GPS data and XMP during import and write-back.
|Support for custom XMP namespaces introduced by camera companies and other software vendors.
|Support for thousands of camera-specific maker note fields (for display, search, sort, filter and export).
|User-definable XMP labels and colors to deal with the problem of different label names used by software from different vendors.
|Adding, editing and viewing GPS coordinates and related data.
|GPS track log import for adding GPS coordinates to files. Track log display on map.
|Powerful Map Display: IMatch supports maps from: Google Maps, Bing Maps, HERE Maps and OpenStreetMap.
We don’t believe in forcing users to use the mapping services of one vendor only. For freedom of choice and privacy reasons.
|Reverse geocoding to produce location data (county, city, location, …) from GPS coordinates in image files.
IMatch supports the following geocoding services: GeoNames.org, Google and HERE.
|Unique user-configurable file versioning concept to automatically propagate metadata changes between master files and versions.
This ensures that changes done to metadata like keywords, titles, description etc. on the master file are also applied to all versions.
|Powerful and flexible features for viewing and editing metadata and keywords.
Supports for user-created and 3rd party controlled vocabularies via the thesaurus.
Multiple quality and consistency features integrated.
|Metadata Templates for automatically filling, moving or modifying metadata values.
The templates can be run automatically on file import, for filling stationary values like copyright, author info and legal fields.
Great for photo journalists with strict metadata requirements and tight deadlines.
|The IMatch TimeWiz makes it super-easy to add, modify or shift metadata timestamps.
Camera clock was off again? No problem! Took images in another time-zone? It’s easy to shift dates into your local time-zone.
|Integrated Metadata Analyst (MDA) tool to detect and show metadata problems to the user.
A surprising number of applications out there produces incomplete or non-standard metadata. The MDA helps with that.
|The Metadata Mechanic helps solving typical metadata problems and with tasks like unifying, synchronizing and correcting values.
|Searching and Filtering
|Integrated search engine with typically sub-second search times for 100,000 files.
|Search for file and folder names.
|Search in over 10,000 metadata fields.
|Search for Persons and Events.
|Search in IMatch Attributes.
|Search for images containing a specific number of faces or faces in specific arrangements (pair, group, large group, …).
|Search using Boolean logic (AND, OR, NOT) and parentheses expressions:
London AND "Big Ben".
|Support for regular expressions to handle complex searches.
|Search for duplicate files (same image content, may differ in metadata) and real copies (binary identical files).
|Search for visually similar files based on shape and texture.
|Search based on sketch provided by user (sketch match).
|Search for GPS coordinates and ‘files nearby’ using user-drawn outlines or radius.
|Image display in IMatch is fully color-managed and hardware-accelerated.
|File Windows displays files in folders, categories, collections, timeline nodes, for persons and events.
User-definable layouts are supported and the user can choose from 100+ common metadata field and over 10,000 other supported fields, including proprietary maker notes.
|IMatch offers smart stacking of files to reduce visual clutter in File Windows. Versions automatically form stacks.
|The files to show can be filtered by a wide range of criteria with the Filter Panel.
|The Quick View Panel displays a larger version of the focused file, with support for zoom, stacks and annotations.
|The Viewer displays file in full-screen and up to 8 files side-by-side, with synchronized zoom and pan. Ideal for culling and review.
Direct access to collections, rating, label, marking files for deletion, IMatch categories and vector annotations.
Multiple optional overlays with collections, histogram, metadata, variable grids.
Supports for faces and many other vector-based annotations, for non-destructive files annotation.
|Full-screen Slide Show.
|IMatch uses a flexible concept named sort profiles to sort files in File Windows and other features like export, rename, printing etc.
|Sort profiles combine any number of criteria like file name, folder, size, date & time and any number of metadata fields like rating, label, title, description, keywords, persons, similarity etc.
|IMatch ships with a number of predefined sort profiles which cover the most frequently used sort cases.
Users can create their own sort profiles if they have special requirements, e.g. sorting files by country, camera name or persons shown.
|The Attributes concept enables users to create a database in database. Attributes store any amount of custom data for each managed file directly in the IMatch database.
|Attributes are not limited by metadata standards and work across all file formats.
This makes them ideal for custom data storage and interfacing with external systems or databases.
|Attributes are fully integrated into IMatch. They can be searched, used for filtering and sorting and can be displayed like any other metadata field or property IMatch maintains.
|A unique concept only available in IMatch.
Categories contain any number of files, without duplicating the physical file on disk. A file can be in any number of categories.
|Users create category hierarchies based on their individual needs and then assign files to these categorizes to organize them.
|Data-driven (‘smart’) categories are based on metadata or IMatch variables and enable the user to automatically organize files into hierarchies of any depth. For example, categorizing files by
camera name or
lens used. Or by
country / city / location.
|Formula-based categories allow to produce dynamic categories from folders, collections, timeline nodes, persons and events.
Formulas are also used to combine two or more categories using Boolean logic.
|Category aliases make it possible to link the same sets of images into different parts of the hierarchy without duplication.
|The special @Keywords category is linked to the hierarchical keywords stored in files and greatly speeds up typical keyword operations like replacing keywords, globally fixing typos in keywords, changing entire keyword hierarchies more.
|An included set of Standard Categories automatically organizes files by technical data like camera name, lens, aperture, shutter speed, ISO etc. MP3 files are categorized by artist and album and PDF files by author and title.
|The standard IMatch Workflow Categories organize files by quality-control criteria like
'Files added Today',
'Files without Keywords' or
'Unrated Files'. Users can quickly identify files which need work just by looking at these categories.
|Files with location data are automatically categorized into a 3-level
Country/City/Location category hierarchy.
|Events are a another unique feature of IMatch. They enable users to organize their files by events on a timeline.
|An event can be anything: A birthday party, a city trip, a two week vacation overseas, a concert, a studio session, …
|Events can be created for specific time periods (e.g. start and end date of a vacation). Users can also create events from folders, categories or arbitrary selections of files. This allows the reuse organizational structures users already have.
|Events have properties like name, color and description. They can be extended by adding a place or associated persons.
|The IMatch AI: Face Recognition and Image Classification
|IMatch uses AI / machine-learning for a number of purposes. All running locally, no cloud .
|Excellent face recognition technology with unique features not available elsewhere.
|Face annotations are integrated into the general IMatch vector annotations concept.
This allows to search for faces, sort using faces, view faces in the Viewer and Quick View panel etc.
|IMatch automatically maps face annotations to and from XMP face regions for optimal interoperability with other software.
|The unique People concept is built on top of face annotations. Users can add and manage persons, add data for persons and then use the information anywhere in IMatch. For display, sorting, filtering and more.
|IMatch’s face arrangement feature groups images based on the number of faces in the image (single, pair, group, large group, …)
|The IMatch AI is integrated into the IMatch AutoTagger and enables users to automatically add keywords to their images.
It is fully integrated with other keyword features in IMatch like the Thesaurus. This makes it possible to automatically map the keywords delivered by the AI into hierarchical keywords, to translate them, unify them, map them into multiple synonyms and more. Of course the keywords are stored as standard-compliant XMP and IPTC keywords in the image – accessible for all other applications.
These capabilities set IMatch AutoTagger apart from other software offering AI keywording.
|Converting, Exporting and Printing
|Batch Processor for converting and exporting files in many formats.
Options for canvas, frames, text overlays, watermarks, QR codes and image effects.
Full control over which metadata is exported, including dynamically added data just for export.
|IMatch Design & Print enables users to create prints, photo books, collages. Output to printer, image files or PDF documents.
|Flexible Text Exporter to produce plain text, JSON and XML files from any type of IMatch information or metadata.
|Importing and exporting IMatch categories.
|Importing CSV files (a common exchange format) to fill metadata fields or Attributes with data available elsewhere.
|Import for controlled keyword vocabularies in multiple formats (including Lightroom format) via the Thesaurus Manager.
|Attribute importer for importing metadata values into the IMatch Attributes database.
|Controlled vocabularies, keyword synonyms and keyword links in the Keywords Panel to speed up keyword input and quality.
|Keyword links allow to add any number of keywords and synonyms in different languages with a single click.
Great for stock photographers or photo journalists with tight deadlines.
|Easy integration of external applications and tools via Favorites.
|The Dashboard keeps track of everything that’s important, including user-defined quality management checks and alerts.
|Keyboard shortcuts to open files in their associated application or in Windows Explorer. Integrated Windows Explorer context menu.
|Move/copy files, assign/un-assign one or more categories or keywords with a mouse-click or keyboard shortcut via favorites.
|Automation favorites to combine and run multiple favorites with a single click.
|Batch operations for metadata, to quickly add, remove, change and unify values for any number of files in one go.
|Metadata Templates for automatically filling, moving or modifying metadata values.
|Using the built-in scripting features to automate tasks, interface with other software and systems.
The IMatch database is accessible from virtually any programming language via its REST API.
|IMatch provides a programming interface via the integrated IMatch Anywhere WebService™.
|Service apps run in the background and can perform tasks which require no user interface.
|Any programming language able to access REST services (C#, Python, Basic, Perl, C++, Java, …) can access IMatch databases.
This makes it very easy to extract data from an IMatch database, import data from external sources or manipulate database contents.
|The IMatch Anywhere Webservices™ API is fully documented and published.
Affiliate Program: Earn Money with IMatch
We offer an affiliate program for IMatch via our distributor MyCommerce.
For every purchase made via your custom affiliate link, you earn 20% to 40% of the purchase price! All you need to do is to add a special link to your web site or blog. Very easy. Contact us if you want to learn more.
We reserve the right to decline your affiliate request for any reason.
‘Coupon sites’ or ‘Voucher sites’ must not apply. We only accept qualified affiliates from the fields of photography, digital imaging and related fields.