IPA file icons and do I need them

I’ve been working through a lot of old pictures, made from scans my brother sent me. Mostly I’d trying to eliminate a bunch that are pretty much the same thing, like havivg 20 pictures, from the same “date” my parents had, all in the same room.

Well, as I search for titles that help me focus on a specific group of pictures, I also get a lot of search matches that include the matching title and file type (like jpg), but instead of showing the image, it has some kind of standard Mac icon that has “IPA” on it.

All the ones I checked are in the same folder - one I created myself on an external drive. That folder was set up to store copies of apps for my iOS devices.

When I look in that folder, I only see the apps - none of the files with the picture names. So that seems odd.

Second, if I try to open one of these icons with IPA, it will say something like, “You can’t install the application _____ because it is not supported on this type of Mac”. The name of the iOS application varies. But the file I’m supposedly trying to open says it’s a jpeg. If I delete the file (that is, which has a jpg ending, but has the IPA icon), the application it said it couldn’t open is what disappears.

Just doesn’t seem to make sense to me!

The more I research this, the more it seems that somehow actual iOS files got labeled as jpg files, matching names of real jpg files. I can’t imagine how that could happen, especially so many times!

I know this isn’t what you’re asking, but check out PhotoSweeper with respect to your overall project. It compares photos from your hard drive and/or photo library and groups similar photos (you can define the parameters for what is considered similar). It then let’s you choose which photo or photos from each group of matches to keep.

I used a couple duplicate finders some time back. Photo Sweeper X was one of them. Maybe I didn’t do it in the best way or maybe some capabilities weren’t available without paying, but I was never satisfied.

What I have done some work with was creating smart albums in Finder, showing all jpegs, and then sort by size. That should at least keep identical pictures close together so I can find them. Has less use for similar pictures there I want to just pick the best of them. For those I’ve been sorting by parts of names (most of the pictures are titled by who is in them). So I can search for “mom” and narrow things down somewhat.

But it is when doing this process that I get file names that say they are jpeg, show nothing, but if I try to open them, they refer to an IPA app! Yet when I look in the folder it says these are in, all the files are listed as IPA, not jpg. Which seems to make no sense at all.

As I said, as I’ve deleted those jpgs that show the IPA icons, the actual IPA file gets deleted.

Not sure, but I’ve also seen files, when searching for images, that show DOC icons and, I think, PDF icons, but can’t actually see what they contain. I tried checking again just now, but it didn’t happen. Not sure what was different before.

But I am tempted to just delete all those IPA files. I was saving them just in case Apple removed something I wanted from the app store. Maybe not worth it. Or maybe I should delete and save them over again (using iMazing). I have about 230 that were not removed when I deleted those odd “jpg” files.

If the name says .jpeg but it has an IPA icon (and tries to open as IPA), did you try to control click on the file and “open with …” -> Preview to see if it really does have a picture in it, even if the operating system thinks it’s an IPA? Another similar test is to change the extension from “.jpeg” to “.jpg” and see whether that changes how your computer treats the file.

If either of these work, there is a permanent fix. From memory I think you go into to get-info box for one of those files and tell it how to open that file (with Preview) and then there might be a checkbox to tell it all other files with the same extension should be treated the same way. (this is from ancient memory, and newer versions of MacOS might have changed that)

I don’t recall every selecting “open” with “preview”. However, I did often select the file and press the space bar. With an actual image (or many other files, like Txt, etc) I would see the file as if it was opened by an app. But with these IPA icons, I don’t see anything like that.

In any case, it seems to make little sense that that deleting actually deletes an actual IPA file. I can’t figure out why the names are, apparently, getting changed when doing a search. These particular ones all seem to be located in the same folder - a folder that only contained IPA files. There were no files in that folder that were something else.

Anyway, I did end up just deleting all the actual IPA files. I’m not sure if that got rid of all the weird search result names, but I know it got rid of a lot of them.

The files that say they are DOC-X or PDF or something that don’t show anything expected when hitting the space bar are still things I have to check into more.