Why does every Camera put Pictures in the DCIM folder?

Ankur Gupta
Ankur Guptahttps://antarjaal.in
Web developer by profession, Over 10 years experience of building websites and web applications. Currently working on Epaper CMS Cloud (Software As Service based product). Special interest in computer and technology. After writing on the blogger platform for years, started his own tech portal Antarjaal.In.

You must have noticed that whenever they take pictures, whether it is a smart phone or a digital camera, it puts them in an special folder called DCIM. Full form of DCIM is Digital Camera Images.

What is DCF?

The full form of DCF is Design Rule for Camera File System, ie a standard based on which files will be stored in the camera. The name of the institution who created this standard is JETA (Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association). The first version of this standard came out in 2003 and was updated in 2010. This standard was created so that different camera and image software and hardware could work mutually without any issues. Now what does this mean? You must be thinking Let me explain further.

According to the DCF standard, the camera (whether smartphone or digital camera) will always store all the pictures in a folder named DCIM.

The DCIM directory will have several sub-directories whose names will consist of numbers ranging from 100 to 999 and five alphanumeric characters. These five characters can be chosen according to the manufacturer of the camera or software. For example in my Android phone it is 100ANDRO. Apple phones will have something like 101APPLE
Within each directory the camera will insert images whose first four characters in the file names will be alphanumeric (which can be determined by the camera manufacturer) and the remaining four numbers. Such as: DCF_0001.JPG. You may also see .thm files. These files contain the metadata of their original files. If you have a MOVI0001.mp4 file, the MOVI0001.thm file will also contain the metadata and thumbnail of the original mp4 file.

This standard is applicable to camera equipment around the world. This standard has many benefits. If you connect a camera or memory card to a computer, the computer searches for this DCIM folder and when it is found, it automatically turns on the camera app or shows a suitable option. Also, when you remove the memory card from one company’s camera and put it in the camera of another company, then the camera of another company only has to find the DCIM folder and it instantly displays the pictures. Without this standard, different devices would not be able to find files of memory cards used with each other.

So that’s why the camera saves photos in the DCIM folder.

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