Image storing algorithm at photo album sites

Hi there;
I am coding a image storeing website... Photo albums etc.But storing them in a folder system is getting complex for me... Whats the best way of storing image to folders?
What i did up to now is: every member has its own main folder named with hex numbers... and i rename the uploaded images with hexnumbers again...
The result is like:(first one is user-hex /second one is image-hex.jpeg)
4324AFC3BC2390DE / 45F83AECB43B2A.jpeg
its an unprofessional but simple working way...hard to predict the image hex if the image is published as private picture...
If the user has 2000 photos it maybe hard for a single folder to index the photos...
When i look at professional photo album sites or flickr...
Image folders are like 67/434/4543/345/4534/5443F432ACD342.jpeg
so there are too many subfolders...But whats the logic and algorithm behind..How do they name these subfolders?how do they group images in folders?
What can i do with JAVA with best performance on heavy traffic?The archiving mechanism must be fast on indexing and good for maintanance
Please give me ideas or refer me some web links
thank you

If you are using a database to store information about the image then you can use the primary key (or an obsfucated version of it) as the name of the file.
That way when you move images between folders/groups you don't have to move the physical file as its primary key stays the same. All that is needed is a DB update to change the folder/group relationship in the table.
A side note: Many file systems have severe performance problems if you store too many files in a single directory. Subdirectories can really help. Use part of the primary key as a directory name and the rest as the file name.

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