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How to connect new external drive with LR catalog

Contributor ,
Jul 22, 2018 Jul 22, 2018

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On the advice of a friend I retired my old ext drive containing my catalog and all photos.  Before doing so I copied and pasted all of that to a new ext drive.  Problem now is that when I click on my current LR icon it directs me to the old ext drive.

How do I open the catalog and photos on the new drive??

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Community Expert , Jul 22, 2018 Jul 22, 2018

Just give the new drive the exact same name of the old one, and disconnect (or rename) the old one. Then start Lightroom by double clicking the Lightroom catalog on the new drive to let Lightroom know this is the catalog to use from now on. You only have to do that once.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 22, 2018 Jul 22, 2018

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What OS? What exact version of Lightroom?

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Contributor ,
Jul 22, 2018 Jul 22, 2018

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High Sierra,  LR Classic CC

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Community Expert ,
Jul 22, 2018 Jul 22, 2018

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Just give the new drive the exact same name of the old one, and disconnect (or rename) the old one. Then start Lightroom by double clicking the Lightroom catalog on the new drive to let Lightroom know this is the catalog to use from now on. You only have to do that once.

-- Johan W. Elzenga

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Contributor ,
Jul 22, 2018 Jul 22, 2018

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sounds good.  will give it a try.  thanks Johan.

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Contributor ,
Jul 23, 2018 Jul 23, 2018

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it worked.  so simple.  again, thank you.

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Contributor ,
Jul 24, 2018 Jul 24, 2018

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everything working ok but the new drive now has a small ? in a box after the designated name.  hesitant to erase it.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 24, 2018 Jul 24, 2018

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Can you show a screenshot?

-- Johan W. Elzenga

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Contributor ,
Jul 24, 2018 Jul 24, 2018

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Screen Shot 2018-07-23 at 9.36.36 PM.png

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Contributor ,
Jul 24, 2018 Jul 24, 2018

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the good news - the catalog on the new drive did back up to the new drive and when i opened it this AM (by clicking the LR icon) it went  to the right catalog.

the bad news - when i tried to import i got the following error message:Screen Shot 2018-07-24 at 9.45.22 AM.png

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Community Expert ,
Jul 24, 2018 Jul 24, 2018

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That question mark is a real character in the drive name. No idea how you did that, but you need to remove it. Lightroom is looking for the 'PHOTOS' disk, not for a disk with a question mark behind that name.

-- Johan W. Elzenga

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Contributor ,
Jul 24, 2018 Jul 24, 2018

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PHOTOS was the name of the original drive.  i changed that drive name to PHOTOS1 and made the new drive PHOTOS.  tried importing again and everything works ok now.  am really afraid that if i mess with the name LR is not going to be able to find it.  sending a screenshot to show you that the ? appears both in Finder & LR.Screen Shot 2018-07-24 at 12.38.07 PM.png

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Community Expert ,
Jul 24, 2018 Jul 24, 2018

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When you renamed the new drive, it somehow became 'PHOTOS?'. I have no idea how, but Lightroom now knows this drive as such, so you can just leave it that way. The error message you saw was Lightroom saying that it was still looking for the 'PHOTOS' drive, and because it could not find it the import destination was changed to the default (your 'Pictures' folder). You should be able to simply change this again in the destination panel, so it now becomes the appropriate folder on the 'PHOTOS?' drive.

The question mark is a bit odd (especially because Lightroom did recognize the disk after all), but I don't think it will do any harm.

-- Johan W. Elzenga

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New Here ,
Oct 28, 2022 Oct 28, 2022

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I have a similar situation but I don't understand the answer. How do I 'start Lightroom by double clicking the Lightroom catalog on the new drive'?

I used Finder to copy 16 years worth of folders and photos from a variety of older hard drives to a new Toshiba external hard drive but, of course, LrC can't recognize any of my files. The Toshiba does come up on the left hand side and I can see the annual folders that I set up (2006, 2007, etc) but I can't see the folders within each year folder or, of course, the photos.

My understanding is that by using Finder I have transferred the actual photo files to the Toshiba but not the catalogue and that is my problem: LrC can't find the photos because they're not in a catalogue.

That's why I don't understand this answer you gave kayak107: How can I double click on a catalogue in my new drive if there is no catalogue on my new drive?

Thanks,

Jeff

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