I am on Debian testing. I have come across this problem before and haven't found any resolution so far using search-engines, perhaps not precise enough, dunno.

The thing is I have a folder/directory called 'Pictures'. Now while I can sort the files through date-wise, seeing them through an image viewer, the images come up randomly. There isn't and doesn't seem to be a way to tell the image viewers to show the images date-wise. I am looking at the accessed and modified dates to be used as the date rather than the creation date of the file. Is there anyway to do that ?

  • I suppose the image viewer fetch them in the order they appear in the directory. However, you may be able to pass them as command-line arguments in a predefined order (i.e. image-viewer first second third ...). Check if your viewer supports it and please tell us what it is. Are you open to installing other viewer if not?
    – Quasímodo
    Dec 9, 2020 at 17:16
  • I am open to install another viewer, I do have feh, eom, eog, queegie, you name it. If there is some other let me know. I have around 400 or so images in the directory so the method you have shared on the CLI does not scale, sorry.
    – shirish
    Dec 9, 2020 at 23:32
  • Look for "sorting files by modification date", then you can write a script that pass sorted files as arguments. I'm pretty sure Zsh has a simple one liner to do that.
    – Quasímodo
    Dec 10, 2020 at 12:32
  • I am using bash at the moment due to many reasons. If you do come across a script or two please share. I did try github to see but perhaps my fu is not strong. Wasn't able to find anything. Maybe didn't know the right key-word.
    – shirish
    Dec 11, 2020 at 20:48
  • 2
    ristretto is an extremely lightweight image viewer that has a setting: Edit->Sorting->by date. It sorts by date of modification of the file.
    – meuh
    Mar 7, 2021 at 16:17

3 Answers 3


Good news: I just wrote a plugin for GNOME Image Viewer (Eye of GNOME) that allows sorting by modification date. I tested on Ubuntu 21.10 but it should work on Debian and other distros that use GNOME. You can download the plug-in here. Cheers. https://github.com/cybereality/eog-modified-date-plugin

  • Tried it, didn't get anything or dunno how its supposed to work. Made the directory under ~/.local/share/eog/plugins and then moved it. $ mv eog-modified-date-plugin-1.0.2 ~/.local/share/eog/plugins/ Now I have no idea whether its working or not :( eog 41.0 for what it matters.
    – shirish
    Oct 31, 2021 at 21:58
  • Thanks for trying it out. You have to copy the plug-in folder called "modified-date" which will be inside the "eog-modified-date-plugin-xxx" folder. That should work. Nov 1, 2021 at 22:59
  • I did that. This is how it looks - ~/.local/share/eog/plugins/eog-modified-date-plugin-1.0.2/modified-date$ ls gschemas.compiled modified-date.glade modified-date.plugin modified-date.py
    – shirish
    Nov 2, 2021 at 7:51
  • Can you share screenshots as to where and how I know that the plugin is there and working. AFAI saw, EOG doesn't have anyway to let the user know if a new plugin has been installed.
    – shirish
    Nov 2, 2021 at 20:01
  • 1
    Okay that is good to hear. The plugin only changes the order of the images when you cycle through or inside a slideshow. It doesn't display any additional information. Sorry. Nov 17, 2021 at 7:08

The plio viewer can sort by modification date (and many other properties too): https://codeberg.org/klartext/plio

If someone is willing to package it for debian, there is a RFP: https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=1036637

P.S. (edited): I'm affiliated with plio

  • I had issues while trying to compile locally, Couldn't get freeimage.h as shared. Using gcc 12.3 ''$ gcc --version gcc (Debian 12.3.0-5) 12.3.0 Copyright (C) 2022 Free Software Foundation, Inc. This is free software; see the source for copying conditions. There is NO warranty; not even for MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.''
    – shirish
    Jul 10, 2023 at 13:11
  • Also here - bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=1036637#10
    – shirish
    Jul 10, 2023 at 13:13
  • Was able to fix it by downloading and installing the freeimage-dev package. The next issue seems to be the mono-spaced font. I did change it to /usr/share/fonts/truetype/oxygen/OxygenMono-Regular.ttf in config.h and the issue was no longer there. Perhaps you can add that font in config.h ??
    – shirish
    Jul 10, 2023 at 13:35

With zsh,

feh ./*.jpg(Om)

Would pass the list of jpg files in the current working directory Ordered by modification time (oldest to newest) to feh (replace feh with your favourite image viewer).

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