New saved jpg won't overwrite the original

PhotoLab 2.3.0 build 23891

I just noticed today that the current version of PhotoLab won’t overwrite a file with the same name even if I pick that option when saving. The file isn’t saved at all. Opening PhotoLab as admin makes no difference. I tried both jpg and tiff files with the same result. If I rename the file or add a suffix to the file name it saves fine.

Is this a bug?

I believe it’s a feature of PhotoLab’s non-destructive editing design, and not a bug. As in other non-destructive software, there is no save feature, only an export feature. All edits are overlays that are applied on the fly and automatically saved to a database and sidecar file. You export to a different file name to have your edits permanently baked into a new copy of the image while the file you applied your edits to is protected from being overwritten. It’s basically the same process as when editing raw files. Of course, raw files can’f be saved with edits at all.

Why would you want to overwrite your original jpegs or tiffs anyway? Once you do that you can’t go back and undo any changes you’ve made. It defeats the purpose of non destructive editing. With PhotoLab’s non-destructive editing if you decide to add additional edits to that image, or undo edits you have already done, or even go back to the beginning and start over, you can do it at anytime. The image you have edited is always untouched and the edit instructions you applied will continue to exist in the database and sidecar files and are always available for further editing.

As an aside, with regard to naming exported files in PhotoLab, what this feature lacks is the ability to completely rename the file rather than to just append the original file name with a user defined text string of very limited length.



Hi Mark, thanks for the comments. DxO has been and still is my favorite photo program for several years, and it just keeps getting better and easier to use as time goes on. I wish they would abandon the database thing and concentrate all their efforts totally on the core program, however.

I understand and appreciate what you said about how DxO protects images but in this case (to overwrite a file) I intentionally wanted to do it for convenience.

The RAW originals are golden and never touched; I do all the editing and save the result in jpg (usually) and then distribute the final products in the folders where they are stored for viewing, printing, or sharing.

Yesterday I had an image open in DxO and decided after saving it that it needed a touch of adjustment to straighten the horizon. So I did so, and re-saved it with the “overwrite” option selected; since that didn’t work I had to delete the first jpg and rename the second one. Why does the option to overwrite the image pop up if it doesn’t work?

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Hello Ed,
I am on a Mac and there it works as you want it to work. Have you asked support already?


Ed when you say you saved it again I assume you meant you exported it again. If so it works as expected for me too.

It’s not unusual for me to export a raw image as a jpg only to go back and make a few changes so I can export it again choosing the option to overwrite the first one. Works every time for me.

Windows 10 version 1803
PhotoLab version 2.3.0

If he was referring to exporting to a different file than the one he was editing I completely agree he should be able to overwrite an existing file name. However, I got the impression, perhaps erroneously, that he was editing Tiff and jpeg files and wanted to export them (save in his terminology) to overwrite the image he was editing. That you cannot and should not be able to do.

Are you actually referring to the file manager and Photo Library. The main function of the database is to store your edits and maintain the edit history, among other things.

Could you clarify exactly what you were attempting to do? Were you editing a raw file and having problems exporting and overlaying a previously created jpeg and tiff, or were you editing a jpeg and tiff itself and attempting to overlay the file being edited during export?


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Hello guys,

  • The main question is if you did your touch of adjustment on the original or the output. If you modified the original and do not change any output settings -> the output should have been overwritten. If not -> it’s a bug.

All the rest is properly explained by Mark @mwsilvers, thank you.

Svetlana G.

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I tried it: it’s no bug. If the file already exists, I was asked, if I want:

  • to overwrite
  • give a new unique name
  • or abort.