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Export/Sync Lightoom to Harddrive

Community Beginner ,
Dec 04, 2023 Dec 04, 2023

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Hi Everybody so I want to be able to sync/export all my photos from Lightroom (not classic) to a folder on my computer but to include the Folder/Album structure which I have within lightroom so for example in lightroom I will have Folder 2023 --> Folder March --> Album Day out. I want Lightroom to export into that kind of structure. 

 

So far i have not had much luck other than doing each individual folder manually and exporting each album manually. Problem is I have a lot of folders and albums. 

 

I thought about synchronising to lightroom classic then seeing if that would work out of the box but I can't seem to find how to do that either as it only appears to  put them into Year then date folders instead of retaining the original Lightroom Folder-->Album heirarchy.

 

Does anybody know how I can achieve this without doing each one individually?

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Community Expert ,
Dec 04, 2023 Dec 04, 2023

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If you can get your desired organisation of virtual albums (collections / collection sets, in Lightroom Classic parlance) showing inside Lightroom Classic, then regardless of what real folders (dated or otherwise) these images' source files may live inside - there is a plugin available from Jeffrey Friedl which can help do what you ask. 

http://regex.info/blog/lightroom-goodies/collection-publisher

 

This makes use of LrC's "publish" feature but the practical result is the same as using Export. It automates the job. Also once you'd done it once, Publish can track further change and then on demand later update (re-export) only what is necessary externally, to maintain this mirroring of what is seen inside the Catalog. 

 

I have no experience of Lightroom non-classic - is there really no bulk export option that can include multiple albums? I have just seen report of so many subtle behaviour differences between that and Lr Classic (e.g. keyword handling), it may be preferable in those terms to export natively out of your primary library if possible.

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Community Beginner ,
Dec 04, 2023 Dec 04, 2023

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Hi Richard, Thanks for the reply. 

 

I will try that plugin and give it a go, I am synchronising my photos now to Lightroom classic whether that creates the collections as they exist in Lightroom CC is yet to be seen as only one collection seems to show even though other photos have been imported in the all photographs so i'll see how i get on after I synchronise a good chunk of them later today.

 

There is no bulk export option in non classic it is just multi select photos by doing  shift click then export sadly its a very poor export experience. Really easy to import but getting out of it they have made it a real pain. Maybe to try and get you to keep using their cloud based offering.

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Community Expert ,
Dec 04, 2023 Dec 04, 2023

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All Photographs view will always disregard any collection membership as well as disregarding which disk and folder images live inside. Any collections which reflect albums coming down from Lr, will show up in the Collections panel.

 

I am really not the person to advise on this transfer having not used Lr (cloud) at all, and Lr mobile scarcely. Perhaps others with the right experience will chip in.

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Community Expert ,
Dec 04, 2023 Dec 04, 2023

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quote

 

I thought about synchronising to lightroom classic then seeing if that would work out of the box but I can't seem to find how to do that either as it only appears to  put them into Year then date folders instead of retaining the original Lightroom Folder-->Album heirarchy.

 

Does anybody know how I can achieve this without doing each one individually?


By @ShaunH

 

What you want to do in Lightroom cannot be done. The best that you can achieve is to export each album individually, having first created the physical "Folder" structure on the target drive, then exporting the album into that physical folder structure.

 

Regarding the use of Lightroom Classic, comparing the "Year then date folders" to the "Lightroom Folder-->Album hierarchy" is comparing apples with oranges, i.e. the two things are completely different. The equivalent in LrC to the "Folder 2023>Folder March>Album" structure in Lightroom would be Collection Set>Sub Collection Set>Collection. When you sync LrC with the cloud, all the existing Albums in Lightroom would appear as Collections (with the same name) in LrC, but the Folder>Sub Folder structure does NOT sync as Collection Set>Sub Collection Set. So you would then have to recreate that manually in LrC, then possibly the plug-in that @richardplondon mentions "may" be able to do what you want, but I'm not certain it will include the Collection Set>Sub Collection Set part in the export process.

 

You could consider making a feature request (idea) for this functionality to be added to Lightroom, but in order to support that idea you would really need to explain the use case for such a feature. I use Lightroom to store all my images in the cloud, and haven't yet come across a need to do what you are suggesting, but that doesn't mean it's not a valid request as we can all have different workflows.

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Community Beginner ,
Dec 04, 2023 Dec 04, 2023

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Hi Jim, Thanks for the reply. 

Sadly a feature request probably would not be accepted as my use case is moving away from Lightroom Cloud Storage as I am trying to cut costs in various areas of my life right now. 

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Community Expert ,
Dec 04, 2023 Dec 04, 2023

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The official Adobe solution for those moving away from the Cloud is to use the Adobe Lightroom Downloader app, which downloads all cloud images to a date-based folder structure within a specified parent folder. So it does not replicate the album structure, but of course it does avoid unneccesary duplication of any images which are contained within more than one album.

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Community Expert ,
Dec 04, 2023 Dec 04, 2023

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I wonder if before using a transfer method that did not reflect albums, it may be useful to add a distinct organisational keyword first denoting each album, to all the members of that album. Then once within the LrC Catalog, these special keywords can be one at a time filtered by, and so used to quickly recreate Collections. These special keywords can be set to not export. Any image that had got marked as appearing in more than one album, would then acquire membership in more than one Collection naturally (which is not a problem, still only needing to be downloaded once). Any nesting relation of the albums within some parent hierarchy, in the cloud, would need to be re-created by making collection sets in the Catalog. But this is likely much less onerous to do - perhaps referring to screenshots - than is the job of populating Collections with images.

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