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Trouble copying photos and LR files over to new laptop?

Discussion in 'Managing your Photos & Video' started by digital mikeon, May 6, 2012.

  1. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    Hello everyone;
    This is my first post as a forum member, and I come with a problem in hand as I am sure many of you first arrived here. Here's my problem, I have all my image files and LR files running on LR 3 on my PC, operating from a connected external hd. My PC is using Windows XP and is 32 bit version of Lightroom 3 from my disk. I have 230 gig of RAW images collected over the last few years in this drive and they have been edited extensively in Lightroom with next to no problems at all. I now have a new super laptop computer, Windows 7 Pro 64 bit OS, and have Lightroom 64 bit version loaded off of my disk. It opens just fine on my laptop, now to get my images and associated files moved onto this machine. My Lightroom manual " The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3" book by Martin Evening is my only resource guide other than the online help. Here is the process that I tried twice over from scratch and was unsuccessful in both attempts. First I opened LR on my pc, went to the "Catalog panel" and selected "all photographs". I then clicked "file", followed by "export as catalog". I want everything copied over so I checked all three boxes that were presented. I directed the files to be sent to a connected portable hd, and clicked the "export catalog" button. Now it took over four hours for this transfer onto the portable hd to be complete, but upon completion as far as I can tell all is well. I then moved the portable hd and connected it to my laptop. With LR open on my laptop, I then selected "file", then "open catalog", directed it to the file on the portable hd, and clicked "open". I got the relaunch Lightroom window and hit "relaunch" My images opened on LR, or at least the previews I would guess, because when I go to open an image I get "file is offline or missing" on my screen. I repeated this proccess twice over with the same negative effect. What am I doing wrong, and how do I correct this problem? Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks in advance.
     
  2. Jim Wilde

    Jim Wilde Lightroom Guru Staff Member Moderator Lightroom Guru

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    Hi, welcome to the forum.

    Although I maybe might have done the transfer a little differently, what you describe should have worked fine (the first obvious thought would have been differing drive letters on the two systems, but "Export as Catalog" should sort that out). Could you post a couple of screenshots, one of the Folders Panel in the Library module, with at least the top level folder(s) showing, and the other of an Explorer window showing the opened folder containing the catalog file? If you need help with the screenshots, have a look at this post.
     
  3. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    went to the page you directed about screen shots. My PC is not an online computer so that I cannot directly access the internet from it. It is XP so I needed one of those screen shot programs. I think whatever I have succeeded in doing now has only made my problem far worse. Now I seem to have two external drives both with all my image files on them, plus they both have lrcat files on them (both same) and two computers, one pc and one laptop, both loaded with LR and neither willing to display my catalog on either machine. Now how am I going to reload these lrcat files into a new catalog on both machines and recognize where the image files are so that they will work together? I may have really fudged things up now I'm worried>
     
  4. Jim Wilde

    Jim Wilde Lightroom Guru Staff Member Moderator Lightroom Guru

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    Can I suggest that if you're not sure how to fix the problem then it's probably best to stop trying until we get a handle on the problem.

    Obviously ONE of your computers has access to the internet, right? If that's the Win7 system, simply connect the portable HD that you think holds the catalog and your image files and take those screenshots using the Snipping Tool....once we have those we can start working out what's happened and how to deal with it.
     
  5. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    Hope I have done this correctly, lets see... I guess I am going to recquire a little more guidance here. I took the screen shots as directed and placed them on my desktop, where they are now. I click on the insert image icom and the "from computer" tab selected, but I don't get the little window with the browse button next to it showing in the tab?
     
  6. Jim Wilde

    Jim Wilde Lightroom Guru Staff Member Moderator Lightroom Guru

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    Oh, that's a bit unusual. Can you maybe try with a different browser?

    Alternatively you could try simply copying the image to the clipboard (open the image in something like Paint, select it, Copy it, then right-click in the thread reply box and select Paste). That seems to work also.
     
  7. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    While I am trying to resolve the screen shot issue I want to explain what I have found out to date about what I have done here. Here is the full scenario.... purchased D200 and CS 3 same time after both had just been released, lots of camera/photography experience (film), not so much computer experience. Amassed 20k+ images managed through ACR and Bridge. January 2010 upgraded to CS 5 plus the addition of LR 3. Everything installed, upgraded onto my only PC running Windows XP with all images and lrcat files on both the "D" drive in it plus redundant copies of both onto a Lacie external hd of 1tb. From day one of switching to LR I have adopted it's file hierarchy of having files by dates. Over the last 16 months I have added 6k+ images to my collection, have extensively edited all of those images in LR, many digital copies and such, plus much LR editing of images that were initially done in ACR before swithing over to LR. All images both old and new were in tha same catalog, with all the images in the same folder on two drives. With sorting set to Z to A when viewed In LR all of my newer dated image files were topmost presented in the library module list. I acquire my first ever laptop recently and it is blazing fast compared to my PC, Windows 7 pro 64 bit, 16 gig RAM. Installed CS 5 and LR onto it no problem. Now my HD on my PC is smaller 225 gig or so and was full to the brim, couldn't fit even one more card of RAW images. Wanting to synchronize all of my files and images over my now two computers here is what I did. From LR I exported the whole catalog complete with lrcat files onto a small Lacie portable hd I purchased recently with the intent of importing that data into my new laptop and LR there. The file export seemed just fine as I saw the same files on this portable hd as are on my external hd from my PC, both images and the lrcat files. I then ( and here is where I believe that I really screwed up) I deleted everything on my "D" drive on my PC safe in the belief that I had everything safely backed up onto two seperate hd's. My intention was to have all images and lrcat data on both external drives plus copies of everything on my laptop and the only files that I was going to keep on my "D" drive in my PC were to be copies of the lrcat files. Now when I have opened LR on either my PC or my laptop from the files that are identical on both external hd's this is what I have noticed. All of the image files that were on my PC before switching to LR complete with all of the associated lrcat files and edits, and keywording done to them since beginning to use LR are still in the catalog and are accessible from LR. All of the images added since installing LR (5k or so) plus all of the extensive editing, keywording, digital copies etc. done to them with LR and filed under the dated file hierarchy that LR wants to use are greyed out with the little ? on the image previews. All RAW image files are in the same folder as always just not any lrcat files associated with any of the images taken over the last 16 months. I now fear that they have been lost for good. Does this sound about right to you? I have no idea where the missing lrcat files have gone to, always thought they were being stored in the lrcat file along with all of the other lrcat files built up on my previous image files imported into LR from the beginning. Any advice on how I might proceed would be greatly appreciated.
     
  8. Jim Wilde

    Jim Wilde Lightroom Guru Staff Member Moderator Lightroom Guru

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    To be honest, I'm really not going to be able to help without those screenshots. From what I can understand from your narrative the catalog and image files should be safe on that portable HD, but I need to see those screenshots first.

    I also don't understand what you mean in the part of your post that I have quoted, could you elaborate?

    Finally......a large block of text as you have posted is very difficult to properly assimilate (for me at least), could I ask that you try to break up your posts into paragraphs? It would make my old tired brain a lot happier. Thanks. :)
     
  9. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    Sorry for my writing syle, or lack of it I would guess. I will get those screen shots up as soon as I can get that accomplished here. About the part you highlighted there... As far as I can see there are only three distinct files in my folder named Mike Hannam Photography. One file are the image files (230gig), one lrcat catalog file, and one lrcat preview file. I believed that all new LR catalog files since January 2011 (not 2010 as previously stated by me) were being added to that lrcat file that is showing in my HDD's, but apparently they are not there? I will add another post showing the screen shots as soon as I figure out how to do that correctly. I want to thank you for your patience in trying to aid me here with my problems, sorry if I come off as a dummie when it comes to working with computers when I step outside of the actual Photoshop or Lightroom programs
     

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  10. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    The other screen shot you asked for Capture.PNG
     
  11. Jim Wilde

    Jim Wilde Lightroom Guru Staff Member Moderator Lightroom Guru

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    Thanks for the screenshots, but can I ask you to retake the one of your Folders Panel with "my photographs" expanded so that I can see the levels below that (I'm looking to see if there are any '?' marks on the sub-folders').

    What I am seeing so far looks perfectly normal, but obviously you are not seeing what you expect to see, so I need to better understand that and some more screenshots would help.

    "I believed that all new LR catalog files since January 2011 (not 2010 as previously stated by me) were being added to that lrcat file that is showing in my HDD's"......again I don't really understand what you mean by "all new catalogs". Do you mean the backup catalogs which are optionally created when you exit Lightroom? If so, they should be in that Backups sub-folder. If not that, again can you explain a bit more.
     
  12. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    This better? Capture.PNG
     
  13. Jim Wilde

    Jim Wilde Lightroom Guru Staff Member Moderator Lightroom Guru

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    OK, thanks....now can you do the same for the same folder in Explorer?
     
  14. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    Capture.PNG See where all of my older files are all highlighted and LR data is active on those files
     
  15. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    Capture.PNG capture 2.PNG Do you see where all of my older image files still are active windows with all the LR data intact.
     
  16. Jim Wilde

    Jim Wilde Lightroom Guru Staff Member Moderator Lightroom Guru

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    Think you may have missed my earlier post.....what I need you to do now is use Windows Explorer to see if you can locate one of the 'missing' folders on that F: drive, if you can see it can I have a screenshot of the Explorer window which shows that folder and the structure above it?
     
  17. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    Capture 3.PNG

    Okay I believe I see where the problem lay. I have moved all of the 2011 and 2012 images into the two folders marked 2011, 2012. I believe I made these moves in Bridge and not Lightroom, hence LR's inability to find the files. How do I now either bring all of those individual files back out of those two folders, or instruct LR to now see the images in either of those two folders?
     
  18. Jim Wilde

    Jim Wilde Lightroom Guru Staff Member Moderator Lightroom Guru

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    OK, I was expecting/hoping that you had done something like that.

    There are two ways you can resolve this:

    1. With Lightroom shut down you can move all the 2011 and 2012 dated sub-folders back to the place in the hierarchy that they were in. Then restart Lightroom and they should all be 'seen' again.

    2. Or if you want to keep the 2011 and 2012 'year' folders (I would, that's the way I have it), then you'll need to work down the Folders Panel list in Lightroom and 'relink' all those 'missing folders' to their new location. I count around 30 sub-folders to deal with, so should only take a few minutes. To do it this way, right-click on a missing folder and select 'Find Missing Folder' from the context menu. A file browser window opens, use this to navigate to and select the correct sub-folder on the F: drive (i.e. either in 2011 or 2012 folders), then click on OK and the ? mark will disappear. Repeat for all the others. Note that the first one you do, when you click OK the sub-folder will seem to be removed from the Folders Panel.....not actually so, if you look more closely you'll find the appropriate year folder has appeared, expand that and the sub-folder will be seen in its new position in the hierarchy.

    Take it slow and steady, and it'll be fine. Let us know how you get on......and in future try to avoid moving image files around outside Lightroom, much better to have LR do it as it can then update its linkages.
     
  19. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    Seems as though I'm not into the blue yet here. I have started making LR recognize where the files are in the 2011 folder. Now that 2011 folder is highlighted and when clicked on I see all of the previews of the images moved onto it, but the little question marks on each image are still there and the offline or missing title appears still?
     
  20. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    second problem I see, when I have highlighted a 2011 file, ckick find missing folder, direct it to the 2011 folder where it is now, click ok a window appears and says Lightroom already contains that file do I want to merge these files yes or no. If I click on merge the file is recgnized in the 2011 folder but all of the separate files by date are now gone and I am building one large file called 2011 with all the images inside of it. Wish I had noticed this before moving in the first 600 images from like a dozen or so dated 2011 files. Have stopped doing anything more until I hear from you again.
     
  21. Jim Wilde

    Jim Wilde Lightroom Guru Staff Member Moderator Lightroom Guru

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    When you clicked on, say, 2011 Apr 04, did you point Lightroom at the 2011 folder, or did you point it to the 2100 Apr 04 sub-folder inside 2011?
     
  22. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    The 2011 folder not the exact sub-folder inside, my bad!
     
  23. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    Okay by doing that on the next folder to find it solved both of my problems at one time. Now can I reverse what I did with the first 12 or so files that I lumped together?
     
  24. Jim Wilde

    Jim Wilde Lightroom Guru Staff Member Moderator Lightroom Guru

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    Not easily, but not impossible either. Suggest you carry on with sorting out the rest, then give me a screenshot of the folders panel again (with the 2011 folder expanded). Before taking the screenshot, click on Library in the menu bar and ensure that "Show Photos in Subfolders" is unchecked.
     
  25. digital mikeon

    digital mikeon New Member

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    Capture.PNG

    Got that all done, here is the screen shot requested I think?
     

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