Librem 5 (and standalone cameras) photo metadata

Hey, so I’m interested in sharing pics online (already shared some actually), and I’m wondering about photo metadata. I wasn’t really thinking about it until now to be honest.

So I’m wondering what metadata is created by the default camera app on the Librem 5 and whether/how to remove it.

I’m also considering buying a standalone camera for better quality pics and possibly videos, and I’m curious about the photo metadata for such devices.

Anybody have any insight here? Any recommendations for a good camera for streaming?

Also, does the Librem 5 really not support recording video yet?


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Photo metadata is usually stored in the picture file (usually jpeg and tiff, but I think some raw formats as well; also definitely part of mp4 and mov files) as part of the Exif standard. This data is structured with the standard tag fields given here: Exiv2 - Image metadata library and tools .

I think it originated as a way of recording various camera settings (shutter speed, focal length, fstop or aperture, flash level), but then expanded to include software settings, camera name, GPS Location.
Most (but not all) standalone cameras don’t have GPSs. This is mainly because the GPS consumes a fair amount of battery and the expectation these days is that a standalone camera ought to have a long battery life (while one expects to charge a phone every other day … or every day).

It is easy to scrub/remove/change any/all exif data and I would recommend it before uploading.


So whats the simplest way to do that? Install the exiv2 package?

exiv2 rm image.png

Is that all thats needed? Can it be used recursively to remove metadata from all images in a directory? And can it also remove metadata from video files?


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See: List of Apps that fit and function well [Post them here.] - #120 by amarok

I no longer have it installed, so I don’t know if you can select multiple images at once for scrubbing. You can try it.


I already recorded videos. The quality is mostly fine except some recording lags.


OMG!! I absentmindedly forgot to check the ~/Videos directory. This changes everything! lol

Thank you :heart:


There is a good thread about image metadata here:

As others have pointed out, Metadata Cleaner ( is a good GUI option and is adaptive to the Librem 5’s screen. It’s really easy to use. I haven’t tried exiv2 so I can’t tell you how it compares with the amount of data each tool removes.


I’ve used exiftool, but exiv2 looks easier. exiftool will let you target specific tags (like geotags or all tags) and set them to blank.

I don’t think that there is a “recursive” option, but exiv2 does work on multiple files.

I’ve never done this for videos. It appears the exiv2 works on many video formats. I would be careful with videos because the exif standard was not meant to apply to video files and, so, there is some inconsistencies. [ Most of the tagging programs can read all tags, but they may not be able to set some tags…]


I don’t know about exiv2, but with exiftool you can recursively remove metadata from all images in a directory and its subdirectories like this:

exiftool -r -all= <path/to/directory>

The built-in webcam on the Librem 14 is enough, while balanced lighting handles the rest of the processing work. I highly suggest skipping past any USB webcams due to lack of Linux support. Provide a budget and criteria so I and others can provide camera recommendations towards them.

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If you want to do a bit of coding (there’s no proper app yet), how about: Using a SONY QX10 (and QX100) lenscamera with L5 possible!


…Librem 14 webcam is definitely not enough…

Hmm, I guess I’d be willing to spend a few hundred USD (less than $1,000) for a good camera, tripod, and lighting.

I haven’t (consentually) had pictures or videos of me taken in several years, but things have changed recently. I need to be able to take high quality personal pictures and videos, as well as possibly streaming one day. I’m not talking about making video blogs or essays on youtube or something…more like onlyfans…

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Depends what is meant by that.

As with many shell commands, it can be used to operate on all images in a directory, simply by using a filename of *.jpg but that is not “recursive” in the usual sense. This can of course be extended to
*/*.jpg etc. if you have a rigidly adhered-to directory structure.

I don’t think exiv2 does support any kind of recursive traversal of subdirectories i.e. in order to do a whole directory tree.

However many commands can be paired with find to achieve that e.g.

find /path-to-top-of-photo-tree -iname '*.jpg' -exec exiv2 rm {} \;

Needless to say, a couple of cautions apply

  • you will usually want to do this on a copy of a directory tree (since for most threat models the image metadata is useful to you)
  • make sure you don’t omit the exiv2 from the above find command :slight_smile:

I believe that exiv2 will do likewise e.g. -g key or -K key but I have only ever used that to get a specific key, not delete it. Key names are fairly baroque so most likely a new user would need something like
exiv2 -p a pr xyz.jpg
to see how key names look.

If I were targeting a specify key to remove, man exiv2 would be my friend. :slight_smile:


Against that budget and criteria, the Panasonic LUMIX GH5 is a good match, which you can find on the used market. If you want something more modern, the Sony ZV-1 or ZV-E10 are also viable choices. Accessory support differ greatly between manufacturers, so I suggest carefully reviewing which camera meets your needs first before considering the ecosystem you are willing to lock yourself into.

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The AnarSec project has been releasing guides, and one of them focuses on metadata:

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