How to Fix a Photo Turned Sideways

A flawed or missing tag causes the problem, but it's easy to resolve

This article describes how to fix the orientation of a photo that has turned sideways.

Causes of Sideways Photos

Most digital cameras include a rotation sensor that writes an orientation EXIF tag into the file that tells the software how to turn the photo for display. That tag, if it's corrupt or inaccurate, yields improperly rotated images on your computer.

How to Fix Sideways Photos

To re-orient your photos, try any of these solutions:

  1. Open the image in an image-editing program that displays EXIF information, such as Adobe Photoshop or the free IrfanView. In IrfanView, the Image > Information command shows basic data, and a button at the bottom of the window opens a separate EXIF data display. If the image does not show EXIF data, then the software cannot orient it properly.

  2. Use Windows Explorer to modify or remove EXIF data. Right-click the image and select Details to reveal a screen with metadata, including EXIF data, that you can adjust if the image supports it.

  3. Force a preferred orientation. Rotate the image, then save it. That process reconstructs the image along the requested dimensions.

  • Why do my pictures upload sideways on Facebook?

    You might have saved them that way originally. Another reason has to do with the photo's EXIF tag. An incorrect or corrupted tag will tell Facebook to post the photo sideways. Rotate the photo using Facebook's editing feature before you finalize your post.

  • Why do pictures on my Samsung upload sideways?

    Digital cameras save metadata with each photo in an EXIF tag. If the tag is corrupted or incorrect, your photo might upload in the wrong orientation.

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