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CATALOG confusion help please

Discussion in 'Website Suggestions, Comments & Troubleshooting' started by selsong, Aug 19, 2016.

  1. selsong

    selsong New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2015
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    Intermediate
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    Mac 10.5.x Leopard
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    HI there
    I have a question which is puzzling regarding making backups of my existing catalog

    Heres the scenario: I always back up all my photos regularly but It occured to me recently that although I back up my catalog when I exit lightroom, I should also have a safety back up of this catalog on another hard drive in case anything should happen to my computer. Does anyone know of a video that deals with this specifically and can you direct me to that video?

    The next question is this: among all the files that are in the catalog folder, there are at least 13 Temporary Import Data-5.db-journal files but NO preview file that has the same date as my latest lrcat file. This is bothering as Im sure there should also be a preview.lrcat file ??

    There are also in the same folder that contains these files, there are also 2 further sub folders: one called Backups ( in which there are many sub folders. Are all these sub folders necessary and must I keep them? will the catalog not function if I delete them? ) and another called (my name) Previews.lrdata, in which there are even more numbered sub folders.......but no file called preview.

    Does this all sound correct? I hope my issue is clear and not difficult for you to follow.
    Any help directing me to tutorilas on these matters would be much appreciated.

    many thanks indeed
     
  2. JohanElzenga

    JohanElzenga Lightroom Guru Staff Member Lightroom Guru

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    When you quit Lightroom, it asks you if you want to make a backup of the catalog. In that dialog, you can also change the destination of the backup (press the 'Choose...' button), so you can select the external disk.

    The previews are not backed up because they can be rebuilt if needed.
     
  3. clee01l

    clee01l Lightroom Guru Staff Member Lightroom Guru

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    Those file were created during import and would have been cleaned up IF LR completed the import properly. They were probably left behind if LR crashed during an import. You can safely delete these.
    The date of the Previews Folder is the date the folder was created or last updated. The same is true for the catalog file. You won't likely create or update the Previews folder itself even though LR is constantly adding new files and sub folders deep in its interior. Your catalog file should reflect a date of the most recent time it was updated. The previews folder contains a database file that has pointer to preview images buried deep into the labyrinth of numbered sub folders You can leave this Previews folder alone but as Johan has indicated. LR will rebuild it if you delete it. The Backup folder contains your backup copies of the LR catalog stored in the date named sub-folders. You can remove any backups that you will not need if you need to recover your catalog file from a backup. (I have gone back to a 6 month old catalog to correct a stupid user mistake).
     
  4. Ian.B

    Ian.B Active Member

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    may have this wrong for the answer however my LR backs up to My Pictures once a month and then I copy that backup folder to an external h/drive. All old backup folders can then be deleted although many do keep a couple of backups for insurance. In pre-lr6 / CC those folders are rather large however I believe LR6/CC zips them now
     
  5. bob chadwick

    bob chadwick New Member

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    I use to backup my catalogue file to an external disk but over time it just got bigger and bigger and took longer and longer to do. I read an article that suggested that if you are regularly backing up your drive that this is not necessary. You can make backup copies of the catalogue on the hard drive and then make backups of that with your pictures. If you lose the drive, you will have to restore from the backup any way and this will restore both your images and the catalogue, including all backups you made.
     
  6. clee01l

    clee01l Lightroom Guru Staff Member Lightroom Guru

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    On Exiting LR you can redirect the backup location to a drive other than the one your LR catalog is on. This way when the drive hosting your master catalog file, it does not take out the catalog file backup with it. If you direct LR to back up the catalog file to a different drive, you don't need to remember to do this task yourself.

    I have a 1TB HDD that is at least 6 years old. Long past the time when it should be trusted for critical user data. I use this old disk to catch my LR catalog file backups. I could clear out old LR catalog file backups but there is nothing else that I need this space for. So, I tend to let the LR catalog file backup files accumulate there.
     
    Ian.B likes this.

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