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Files getting deleted from PC on upload to Smugmug website

Community Beginner ,
May 29, 2021 May 29, 2021

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I first observed this issue around 15 May. Smugmug support tells me that the problem cannot possibly be something on their end of the Smugmug Publishing Manager.

 

When I upload new images (HEIC files from my iPhone 11 Pro) from my Windows 10 PC hard drive to the Smugmug website using the Publishing Manager, the images succeed in uploading, but then the files disappear from my hard drive. On any subsequent operations I attempt to perform on these images, Lightroom complains that it can no longer find the files. The files are no longer visible on Windows File Explorer. I've searched my hard drive for the missing files with no success.

 

The problem does not seem to happen when I re-publish existing images (that were uploaded before the problem started or that were subsequently restored). I have not had the time to fully exercise this scenario to confirm more definitively.

 

The unexpected deletion case has happened to me 3-4 times so far... pretty repeatable. Fortunately, in most cases, I had other copies of the deleted images which enabled me to restore them. I have lost at least a couple of originals; I had to rely on the JPG renderings on Smugmug to restore my local library.

 

Has anyone else observed this problem?  What could possibly be causing the images to get deleted - these operations are supposed to be non-destructive. I've performed these operations hundreds of times in the past before the problem emerged ~two weeks ago.

 

I would be happy to discuss in greater detail with Adobe developers if needed.

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Bug, Import and export, Problem or error, Sync, Windows

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Community Beginner , Jun 01, 2021 Jun 01, 2021
An update: I convinced SmugMug Support to escalate the issue to Engineering. I sent them a video demonstrating the situation and I had a fix back about five minutes later. I have no idea what the actual root cause was, but it must have been semi-obvious once demonstrated. All good now. Thanks for listening and for providing suggestions.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 30, 2021 May 30, 2021

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Do you have the plugin setup to upload originals? I have never used it that way and always upload jpegs especially since uploading originals will not show any of the Lightroom edits in the smugmug galleries. If you have the plugin set to jpeg, I can't imagine how it could ever touch your originals as that should ask Lightroom to render new jpegs and upload those.

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Community Beginner ,
May 30, 2021 May 30, 2021

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I don't see the option to upload originals on the Smugmug plug-in. I do have the option to upload RAW+JPG - not sure if that applies for HEIC files. Either way, the images that appear on Sumgmug are JPGs with Lightroom adjustments. In any case, I would still expect any operations to be non-destructive unless I missed a setting somewhere (also, the application seems "surprised" that the image files are missing - so I don't think that the deletions are intended - i.e., it's a bug, not a feature).

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LEGEND ,
May 30, 2021 May 30, 2021

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"I don't see the option to upload originals on the Smugmug plug-in."

 

I didn't say there was one. I just expressed skepticism that any publishing plugin would delete the originals from disk (the plugins access the originals to make JPEGs to export to the publishing service).

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LEGEND ,
May 30, 2021 May 30, 2021

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"Smugmug support tells me that the problem cannot possibly be something on their end of the Smugmug Publishing Manager."

 

Yeah, right, couldn't possibly be a bug in our software. :-<

 

Smugmug is responsible for their publishing plugin, not Adobe. I haven't seen any reports of similar symptoms on the various forms, so it's likely an infrequent issue.  As a plugin developer myself, it would surprise me quite a bit if a publishing plugin deleted originals from the local disk, but you never know with bugs (and the cut-to-the-bone developer teams most online services have).

 

In general, Adobe and Smugmug aren't going to pay much attention to an infrequently occurring issue unless you can force feed them an exact sequence of steps that reproduces the problem (which can be a lot of work).  If you can reliably reproduce those steps, you could post them on the official feedback forum where Adobe wants all bug reports:

https://www.lightroomqueen.com/send-bug-report-feature-request-adobe/ 

 

Short of that, some suggestions:

 

1. Verify you have the absolutely latest version of the plugin by manually downloading it and installing:

https://help.smugmug.com/upload-from-lightroom-HkEIllw1Erz#plugin 

 

Follow the instructions "Install plug-in manually (LR6 and earlier, M1 Macs)".  Relying on the Creative Cloud app to install and update plugins is flakey and unreliable.

 

2. Use this alternative Smugmug plugin instead.  In general, the author does an excellent job of maintaining his plugins, much better than Adobe and online services.  (Adobe engaged him to design the publishing architecture for plugins.) 

 

 

 

 

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Community Beginner ,
May 30, 2021 May 30, 2021

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The issue is pretty repeatable by my observation. And I believe that I have the latest plug-in - I tend to install updates as soon as I am notified, but yeah, wouldn't be a bad idea to check that there isn't a later drop that I need to install manually.

 

I'm really surprised that no one else has encountered the bug, although there is one issue on this forum that could possibly stem from the same issue. The user reported that Lightroom could not find his files.

 

Thanks for the pointers and for the time you've spent thinking about my situation. I may not get around to chasing these leads down right away, but am eager to do so as soon as I can carve out some time.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 30, 2021 May 30, 2021

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Might be helpful to show us some screenshots of how you have set up the publishing service. I am very confused as I have never seen an option to use raw+jpeg in a publish service plugin. I can select either jpeg or originals in my SmugMug plugin which is updated to the latest version.

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Community Beginner ,
May 31, 2021 May 31, 2021

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raw+jpeg is an add-on feature. I have access to it as part of the Smugug Viewfinders program.

Could it be related to the bug I am experiencing?  Who knows.

Screenshot 2021-05-31 160253.png

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 31, 2021 May 31, 2021

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Interesting. Certainly possible that that is the cause as that doesn't use normal Lightroom channels like the normal jpeg or original does. Definitely a probability for bugs to be impactful

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 31, 2021 May 31, 2021

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And how do you get into that program? Have been a loyal SmugMug pro subscriber for many years 😉

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Community Beginner ,
May 31, 2021 May 31, 2021

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I can't recall how it happened, but I received an invitation at some point. I've been a member since ~2005.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 31, 2021 May 31, 2021

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@serafing35193576 wrote:

raw+jpeg is an add-on feature. I have access to it as part of the Smugug Viewfinders program.

Could it be related to the bug I am experiencing?  Who knows.


 

If you acquired this through Smugmug Viewfinders, it’s very possible that has everything to do with what you are experiencing. The Smugmug Viewfinders page (which by the way is how you can join, @Jao vdL) says:

 

Members of Viewfinders, have the opportunity to participate in future studies and activities. The Viewfinders will have a hand in helping SmugMug and Flickr shape new product features and have the chance to earn rewards money in the process.

 

I am not a member, but from that description it sounds like that means:

  • Viewfinders is a sort of beta test program for Smugmug, where members get to try out incomplete features not yet available to the general public, so that Smugmug can debug and improve them before public release.
  • If you got this version of the Publish Service from Viewfinders, that explains why the other Smugmug members here have not seen a Raw+JPEG option in our Smugmug Publish Service for Lightroom Classic: That version of the Smugmug Publish Service is not yet available as a public release.
  • That might also be why Smugmug tech support was not prepared to support it. If it is not yet publicly released, tech support probably has not been told about a new Raw+JPEG option yet and might have no knowledge of it.

 

As with any pre-release software from any software company, if that version of the Publish Service is not yet released to the public and made available only through to members of a pre-release program, then all tech support and feedback are expected to go through that program (Viewfinders). Nobody outside of that group will be prepared to support this, and the developers there will absolutely need to know about what they would call a “data loss bug” (erasing your originals). They will want to kill that bug before the public release of that Publish Service update.

 

If those assumptions turn out to be correct, note that many pre-release programs require strict adherance to a non-disclosure agreement (NDA), which typically prohibits discussing unreleased features outside of the program. I don’t know if that applies to Viewfinder members, but if they released this under an NDA then you’ll want to be mindful of that. Although probably nobody here is going to “turn you in” 🙂 .

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Community Beginner ,
May 31, 2021 May 31, 2021

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Interesting points. I've done nothing to install anything special. It's possible of course that the new features exist in the generally available plug-in, but are exposed/enabled only for folks in the Viewfinders program. The problem case I am exercising is not a "premium storage" feature - not to say that the alpha feature couldn't be affecting it. You're right that I should report it within the program, if possible.

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 01, 2021 Jun 01, 2021

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An update: I convinced SmugMug Support to escalate the issue to Engineering. I sent them a video demonstrating the situation and I had a fix back about five minutes later. I have no idea what the actual root cause was, but it must have been semi-obvious once demonstrated. All good now.

 

Thanks for listening and for providing suggestions.

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New Here ,
Jun 22, 2021 Jun 22, 2021

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I've experienced the same problem, three times over the course of May and June.  I've lost a couple dozen images, none of which were available on any backup (sadly).  So what was the fix?    You don't describe whether they sent you a custom installation, or a workaround, or some other approach.  I just upgraded from 3.2.2 to 3.2.3... will that avoid the bug?

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 22, 2021 Jun 22, 2021

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Apologies for omitting that information. The quick fix they sent me to manually install was version 3.2.2.1. The next day, an update was pushed directly through Lightroom that also resolved the problem. The current version (3.2.3.0) should have the fix.

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Explorer ,
Jun 23, 2021 Jun 23, 2021

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Thank you!  I updated to 3.2.3.0 and was able to sucessfully add the jpg files (downloaded from SmugMug) as replacements for the missing HEIC files.  

 

Hopefully the problem won't recur when I next import and publish HEIC.

 

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