Face Scanning/Detection

Hi All,

I am having trouble with on Mac actually scanning faces. All I can find online about this is it happens in the background. Does anyone know if photos needs to be open? Does the mac have to be awake? Any other parameters need to be met?


According to one discussion I read, scanning is suspended when Photos is open. However, my own observation is that it continues whether Photos is open or not.

It used to be that you could click on the “People” album in Photos’ sidebar, which would give you an idea of the scanning’s progress. I assume (but I don’t know for sure) that this is still available.

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If you look in the process list you can see the daemon running and eating cpu. And in my experience you don’t need Photos actively running.

Right. The process’s name is photoanalysisd. Interestingly, that process is still accumulating CPU seconds on my machine right now, even though I haven’t added any new photos for at least a couple of months.

I opened Photos, went to the People view and clicked on one of the folks there. At the bottom of that page was a note, “People will finish updating when Photos is in the background.”

I’m guessing that means that face detection works either when Photos is open but minimized or another app has focus or when Photos is closed. Not sure if a laptop needs to be connected to power for things to happen.

This was on Catalina.

Thanks for all of your replies. It would seem that there is no definite answer, so trial and error it is!