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Thread: Lightroom re changing hard drives

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    BPN Member David Pugsley's Avatar
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    Default Lightroom re changing hard drives

    I need input from my BPN friends.

    I have one LR catalog, but the images are on two separate external HDs. I'd like to combine all the photos onto one larger drive, but I of course have the need to maintain the folder structure and applied LR adjustments to the images. From what I can tell there are a couple different ways to do this, but I wanted to get your advice. LR can be a bit confusing when it comes to cataloging etc....at least to me. 😊

    Cheers!
    David

    PS I'm on a MAC if that matters.
    david pugsley PHOTOGRAPHY
    http://www.davidpugsleyphoto.com

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    David,

    Indeed there are multiple ways to do this. Perhaps the least confusing (at least from LR's perspective) is to just do it all from within LR. In the Library Module all your drives and folders are displayed in the catalog structure on the leftmost panel. Just drag the folders to where you want them to be (all to one drive in your case) and LR will move them on your drives and keep the catalog information up to date..

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    BPN Member David Pugsley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Declan Troy View Post
    David,

    Indeed there are multiple ways to do this. Perhaps the least confusing (at least from LR's perspective) is to just do it all from within LR. In the Library Module all your drives and folders are displayed in the catalog structure on the leftmost panel. Just drag the folders to where you want them to be (all to one drive in your case) and LR will move them on your drives and keep the catalog information up to date..
    Thanks Declan. Does this particular process only move the files to the new drive or does it copy them? I think I'd like to leave the files on the current drives as another backup. I'm completely rethinking my original file and backup procedures so all options are open. This was brought on by a Lacie drive failing. I'm still trying to determine if I can get to the drive, it won't mount, and what I've lost.
    david pugsley PHOTOGRAPHY
    http://www.davidpugsleyphoto.com

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    Forum Participant Dave Woeller's Avatar
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    I'll offer an option that I recently used. I had to move my entire catalogue onto a portable hard drive in order to conduct a class on Lightroom using my laptop. I used the "export as catalogue" feature and although it took a fair amount of time, the entire catalogue was copied onto the portable and the main catalogue on my desktop was untouched. May not be the most efficient, but it worked for what I needed.

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    David,

    The short answer is, yes the method I suggested will delete the files on the original drive after it moves them. Another method you can use is to just copy the the mass of folders with your images to the new drive and relink them from within LR. If the original drive is not attached the images in LR will have a "?" showing indicating LR can't find the file, if you click this you can point LR to the original and if you are lucky all/most of the moved images will be relinked to the master catalog. But beware, if you keep that original drive attached and you haven't set the pointers to all the files you may end up with a mess with LR using the old and new drives depending on the image. Depending on how you use Dave's method you could end up with the same problem on steroids (export catalog is great for moving to a new computer, as I understand it you are keeping your original instance of LR and the master catalog so you don't need to import all the processing information). The key thing in moving the files is moving the pointers from the catalog to the master files and breaking the pointer to the original location so you don't have multiple copies in different places.

    A good backup plan is vital but I think you may be advised to think if that as distinct from the one time event of moving these files. The next file you download from you camera will make this out of date so you may as well plan a more comprehensive backup strategy that you can easily update (e.g. use that original drive with TimeMachine or SuperDuper). Being too clever now to save an hour may cost you in the end.

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