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Lightroom cannot save metadata to files although I could 15 minutes ago

Explorer ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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I start my import and initial edits on my laptop then save metadata to files. After that, I copy the RAW files and the accompanying XMP files to my desktop and synchronize that folder. This morning, I did the same thing, but no matter what I did, I could not create the XMP sidecar files. Hoping to remedy the situation, I did the following with no change in this behavior:

  1. I restarted Lightroom
  2. Tried using Ctrl-S and the dropdown menu to save metadata to files
  3. Optimized the catalog which restarted the program
  4. Restarted the computer
  5. Now, I am writing this on the support forum to report the issue.

The strange thing is that I was able to create the XMP files earlier this morning, and this problem started out of the blue as I wanted to save metadata to files and copy them all to the desktop.

 

As a temporary solution, I exported the selected images as a catalog and copied them to the desktop. There have been no changes to the computer, Windows 11, or Lightroom. All the updates are applied.

 

This may be a bug or an abnormal behavior.

 

Cemal

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Explorer , Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

Hello.

 

Regarding the photos you're having trouble with: if you make any changes to the photos, can you then save the metadata? I ask because you mentioned deleting some .xmps with Windows Explorer. I was trying to replicate your scenarios and saw that if I manually delete an .xmp using Finder (I'm on a Mac), then saving metadata does not create a new .xmp unless I make a change to the photo. 

 

I also saw another behavior that may be relevant, with three photos I experimented with:

 

In the Library

...

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LEGEND ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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Lightroom or Lightroom Classic? What version NUMBER?

 

When you do Ctrl-S, do you get an error message? If so, what is the error message, exactly, word-for-word, verbatim?

 

Are you syncing these photos with the Adobe cloud? Please check and double-check the settings, do not simply say "I never do that". I want you to check.

 

Are other programs accessing these photos or the XMP files?

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Explorer ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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Lightroom Classic, 13.0.1 release. I do not get any error messages, the progress bar moves from left to right, but very rapidly. I do not use Adobe Cloud storage. No other program accesses or uses XMP files. As I said, I was saving metadata to files, and fifteen minutes later while still in Lightroom, I cannot save it anymore.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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What is the evidence that lets you conclude "I could not create the XMP sidecar files."

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Explorer ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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I press Ctrl-S or select Save Metadata to Files from the menu and look at the folder contents. There are no XMP files. I consider that evidence that the function is not working.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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Is it possible that the folder in your operating system is sorted by file type or file size, and so the XMP files would not be adjacent to the actual photo files?

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Explorer ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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No, because I also searched for any XMP files in that folder, and none showed up.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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Show us screen captures of the folder as it appears in LrC (screen capture should include both the folder panel and part of the grid, so we can see the parent folders). Show us a screen capture of the folder as it appears in your operating system.

 

Use the Insert Photos icon to include your screen captures in your reply. Do NOT attach files.

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Explorer ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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Is this supposed to help me or cross-examine my mental abilities? Asking these random questions is not helping me at all.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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I'm trying to hone in on where the error may be. If one direction doesn't prove fruitful, another direction might.

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Explorer ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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I have sorted the folder where my images are by name and by type. Scrolled up and down, there are no XMP files, I assure you. I also used the search feature of Windows File Explorer and looked for XMP files, but there were none. I have done this many times, and assure you there are no XMP files in that folder as I selected them all and deleted them as part of the steps to correct the problem when I realized the new ones did not generate. That did not help matters.

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Explorer ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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One more piece of information, I turned on the option to automatically write changes to XMP files and made a minor change in a file. I could see the associated XMP file in the folder below the file. But still cannot save metadata to an XMP file by using the shortcut Ctrl-S or the menu Save Metadata to Files options.

 

For a good measure, I also logged out of the Adobe CC application and logged in again then started Lightroom Classic. That did not help either.

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Explorer ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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Another attempt: I created a new empty catalog and imported all the contents of the old catalog into it. I was testing for a glitch in the catalog preventing me from saving metadata to files. The same problem happened in the new catalog as I could not save metadata to files. The problem persists.

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Explorer ,
Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

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Update: I have not done anything beyond what I outlined above and yesterday I could not save metadata to files. Today, I can save them. I tried the Ctrl-S and the Save Metadata to Files option from the pop-up menu and either option works. I have no idea what made it work, but I am pleased that it is back to normal.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

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Apparently their is a nasty bug. That mentioned (not the bug posting) in:

https://community.adobe.com/t5/lightroom-classic-discussions/lr-classic-13-0-1-writes-xmp-over-and-o...

 

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Explorer ,
Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

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Thanks for writing a reply, which made me realize that the file I used to test with was taken today. I can save the metadata for those files I photographed today but not the older ones. The problem, in essence, persists

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Explorer ,
Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

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Hello.

 

Regarding the photos you're having trouble with: if you make any changes to the photos, can you then save the metadata? I ask because you mentioned deleting some .xmps with Windows Explorer. I was trying to replicate your scenarios and saw that if I manually delete an .xmp using Finder (I'm on a Mac), then saving metadata does not create a new .xmp unless I make a change to the photo. 

 

I also saw another behavior that may be relevant, with three photos I experimented with:

 

In the Library module, if I select these three newly imported photos and use CMD-S to save the metadata, Lightroom creates three .xmps. This is fine. 

 

However, if I reimport the three photos then go to the Develop module, select them and use CMD-S to save metadata, Lightroom creates an .xmp for only one of the three -- the first one in my test, which was the "active" photo. To get all three created, I have to right-click on the filmstrip and choose Metadata/Save Metadata to Files. So  in the Develop module, CMD-S doesn't work the same as it does in the Library module, nor does it work the same as Save Metadata to Files from the right-click menu. 

 

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Explorer ,
Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

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@daleducatte, thank you for the pointers. I tried the following:

  1. Make a tiny bit of change like using the healing brush as a very small spot, then save metadata. It works.
  2. Using the right-click menu option to Save Metadata to Files saves it for all the selected files if they are "qualified" for XMP files.

 

I have never run into this problem until this version of Lightroom. I am in the habit of creating XMP files to transport my edits to my desktop and have deleted and recreated XMP files more than a few times.

 

Thank you for pointing in the direction of a workaround. I will mark your post as the Correct Answer although it does not entirely solve the problem which may be deep in the code of Lightroom.

 

Thank you!

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Explorer ,
Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

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Glad I could help. And, yes, I think you are onto something. 

 

The tests I conducted to write my response were done with Lightroom 13.0.1. However, I still had version 12.5 on an older Mac that I don't use very much, so I just tried to repeat the same tests there.  

 

With version 12.5, if I select Save Metadata to Files, the XMPs are created as expected.

 

If I then delete the XMPs in Finder and return to Lightroom and select Save Metadata to Files -- Surprise!! Lightroom recreates them. So it looks like the behavior changed between 12.5 and 13.0.1; whether that was an intentional change or a bug, I do not know. Adobe would have to enlighten us on that.  

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Explorer ,
Nov 10, 2023 Nov 10, 2023

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Does Adobe tech support look at these forum threads? It would be nice to read and reply to these questions as late as it may be.

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Explorer ,
Dec 15, 2023 Dec 15, 2023

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LATEST

After the last update, 13.1, I can save XMP files even after deleting them, multiple times. It has been fixed. Thank you.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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Where are the photos located?

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Explorer ,
Oct 25, 2023 Oct 25, 2023

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Photos are located on the local C drive, not synchronized to the cloud. And this feature stopped working within minutes. I saved some, no problems. I was ready to save a few more, and it stopped saving them.

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