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Thread: Merge Laptop Catalog into Desktop Main Catalog

  1. #1
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    Merge Laptop Catalog into Desktop Main Catalog

    I created a catalog for photos I shot over the weekend on a mac LR4. I flagged, rated and created a collection in that catalog. I want to transfer that info into my main catalog LR4 Win7. I imported my memory stick into my main catalog desktop and created a generic keyword, location info which is the same for all the photos. 1) How do I get the info into the main catalog from the laptop? 2) Do I have to delete the duplicate photos on the desktop or can I just get the info from the LR catalog on the laptop? Thanks for the help I'm concerned about messing up my desktop catalog.

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    If you can not transfer the images and catalog as a complete unit, then you need to create a complete unit as a package under on folder using the "Export as Catalog" function on the Laptop. The copy/transfer this folder package onto the Desktop. Open the master catalog and import this exported catalog using the "Import Catalog" function on the Desktop catalog.

    The package needs to consist of the LR catalog on the laptop and the master images from the laptop. Using the "Export as Catalog" function creates a tidy little package inside one folder which can be copied to a different computer (i.e. the main computer.).

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    If you can manage to have your main computer and the laptop on a network or to connect them both, you can also import the laptop catalog to the main one as Cletus said. that's what I do and it works!

    pAk

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    I exported the catalog to an external drive and imported it into lightroom. Prior to export I renamed the files and directories so they would be the same on both computers. When I import the catalog the directory structure is different. My desktop has 2012-02-18 Portrait in lightroom under the drive name. It's actually in a subdirectory 2012/2012-02-18 Portrait on the physical drive. When I import the files from the laptop is shows up as a subdirectory of 2012 under the main drive. Any way to keep the same directory structure as in the original desktop? Hope you can understand what I'm taking about. Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wbcamera View Post
    I exported the catalog to an external drive and imported it into lightroom. Prior to export I renamed the files and directories so they would be the same on both computers. When I import the catalog the directory structure is different. My desktop has 2012-02-18 Portrait in lightroom under the drive name. It's actually in a subdirectory 2012/2012-02-18 Portrait on the physical drive. When I import the files from the laptop is shows up as a subdirectory of 2012 under the main drive. Any way to keep the same directory structure as in the original desktop? Hope you can understand what I'm taking about. Thanks.
    Yes, I think I understand. Right Click on "2012-02-18 Portrait" in the folder panel on the Desktop. Choose {Show Parent Folder} from the context menu.

    Does this solve your problem? If you need more help, Screen shots of your expanded folder panel and the appropriate folder view on Explorer/Finder will help diagnose the next step. Also if you would be kind enough to fill in your computer particulars on your profile, I would not have to guess what operating system you are using.

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    Quote Originally Posted by clee01l View Post
    Yes, I think I understand. Right Click on "2012-02-18 Portrait" in the folder panel on the Desktop. Choose {Show Parent Folder} from the context menu.

    Does this solve your problem? If you need more help, Screen shots of your expanded folder panel and the appropriate folder view on Explorer/Finder will help diagnose the next step. Also if you would be kind enough to fill in your computer particulars on your profile, I would not have to guess what operating system you are using.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    This is what I get after the import of the catalog from the laptop. It seems that it used the same format for all the others directories, year/directory name/. Before the import of the catalog all the directory names were listed continuous with out a parent year directory. Don't know that I'm unhappy with the new format but I would like to know what happened and how to go back to the original file structure if I want to. Thanks for your help. The Explorer folder view is the same as LR pic above.
    Last edited by wbcamera; 15 Mar 2012 at 8:44 pm.

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    I found it Hide parent returns the directory structure to the original. Thanks.

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    I have tried to export my photos and catalog from my laptop to my desktop but I have gotten an error message that says it has failed for "unknown" reasons. Both the laptop and desktop are running Windows 7 and LR 3.6 64 bit. My images are in a subfolder of "my pictures" and my catalog is in a Lightroom folder, also in "my pictures." Suggestions?

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    Quote Originally Posted by rmstnbrgmd View Post
    I have tried to export my photos and catalog from my laptop to my desktop but I have gotten an error message that says it has failed for "unknown" reasons. Both the laptop and desktop are running Windows 7 and LR 3.6 64 bit. My images are in a subfolder of "my pictures" and my catalog is in a Lightroom folder, also in "my pictures." Suggestions?
    How are you communicating between the two computers? Are you using the "Export As Catalog" function with a destination as a mapped drive on the Target computer or are you doing something else? Do you have the necessary write permissions on the target computer?

    Have you tried to copy both the Lightroom subfolder and the subfolder containing all of your images to the Pictures folder on the other computer not using lightroom?
    Last edited by clee01l; 18 Mar 2012 at 10:28 pm.

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    I tried to "export as catalog" to a compact flash card. It took several minutes (15?) to presumably copy the images to the CF card. At the very end of the process, I got the error message. My intent was then to import the catalog from the CF card into the desktop.

    I haven't tried copying the subfolders to the desktop. I'm always nervous about moving things outside of Lightroom.

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    If you are 'Exporting as Catalog" with image Negatives, you may be exceeding the capacity of the CF card.
    Are your two computers on the same home network? Are they both running Win7? If this is true, you can share one computer's HD with the other and then Export directly into the other computer. I've done this before between my Windows laptop and my Windows Desktop. If this is your situation, I can probably walk you through it.

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    Yes they both use the same home network but they currently are not set up to share. I would appreciate your instructions. I'll have to wait until tomorrow evening before I can attempt them. Thanks again.

    Robert
    Robert

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    Quote Originally Posted by rmstnbrgmd View Post
    Yes they both use the same home network but they currently are not set up to share. I would appreciate your instructions. I'll have to wait until tomorrow evening before I can attempt them. Thanks again.

    Robert
    If both computers are running Win7 or Vista, you can turn on HomeGroup Sharing on both machines. Try that first following the Microsoft instructions. If that works then we are done. If not I can show you how to share a drive on a network and Map that drive to a Drive letter on your other PC.
    .

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    OK. They are now sharing the same HomeGroup.
    Robert

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    Quote Originally Posted by rmstnbrgmd View Post
    OK. They are now sharing the same HomeGroup.
    Then you should be able to Export fron the HD of one into the other. If LR will not let you navigate to a folder on the target computer, then you will need to map a drive on the source computer to the drive on the target computer.

    (FWIW, i am running blind ATM. I no longer operate in a Windows Environment and my Homegroup is disabled. So if you are unable to work this out yourself, I'll probably need some specific screen shots to take you further)

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    So from LR on my laptop, I should "export as a catalog" the images into a folder on my desktop computer's desktop and then import as a catalog into LR on my desktop computer? Or, do I just import as a catalog from Lr on my desktop from the hard drive on the laptop? Do I have to create similar folders in the desktop computer's hard drive? Since I've only processed a few of the image files on my laptop, would it be easier to import all of the images from the CF cards as usual into LR on the Desktop computer and just replicate the changes from the history in the develop module?
    Robert

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    Because the catalog on the laptop has its own 'C:\' path in the catalog table which will be different from the 'C:\' path that the desktop catalog uses, I think it would be best to "Export as Catalog" on the laptop creating a complete export package with negative files. Then on the desktop use the "Import from catalog" function to grab the contents of the 'package' now located locally on the desktop.

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    Cletus,


    Sorry It took me so long to get back to you. Probably explains while I'll be a beginner at LR forever!

    First, your supposition that my memory card was too small was correct. Can't get 7.5 Gb on a formatted 8 Gb card.

    As you suggested, I set up the laptop and desktop to share on the home network, exported the catalog onto the laptop desktop and then imported it into LR on the desktop computer. Worked seamlessly; even went into the 2012 folder as a subfolder.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! Can't wait to upgrade to LR 4 this weekend and start figuring it out all over again!
    Robert

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    Glad to help. And very glad that you followed up with a reply.

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