Is there any reason why I can't work on a Lightroom catalog from a network (NAS) drive? My partner and I have a desktop PC and a laptop, both of which share the same Creative Cloud licence, but any Lightroom storage is restricted to either one local drive or the other. We also have a network file server on which we jointly manage all of our photo files. Our inability to work independently (although not simultaneously) within Lightroom is extremely frustrating. Does anyone know of a simply workaround to overcome this problem?
It's a technical restriction.
Several users asked the same question. You can try to create a feature request. Maybe Adobe realised this feature in one of the next realeases. Feature Request/Bug Report Form
Here you'll find infos about the using of a catalog file on multiople computers:
It's 2019 now. Has Lightroom been updated yet to allow access to catalogs that live on network shares? We have several people (with their own Lr licenses) who work with several shared catalogs and there are version control problems when we keep having to remember to upload your catalog (and .lrdata folders) to the server when done and to download the presumably latest .lrcat and .lrdata folders from the network before going in.
LR Classic still doesn't allow catalogs to reside on network drives, and at this point, I doubt that it ever well. See this article for alternatives (none of which are as good as simply allowing them to reside on network drives): https://www.lightroomqueen.com/how-to-lightroom-catalog-multiple-computers/
Prior to my retirement, I was a database manager at a university. At one point we were looking at a solution to share a database throughout the department, and one of our considerations was to use SQL Lite, which is the database engine used by Lightroom. The single user version was economically feasible for our department. However, when we considered using the multiuser version, the cost quickly became prohibitive. I think that is possibly the issue in consideration here. It would make Lightroom so expensive that most of us wouldn't be able to afford it. I could be wrong, usually am, but that is my suspicion and my take on it.
Jim, I think you might be remembering another database product. SQLite is open source and doesn't have licensing fees. It's also solely for embedding in applications, and it doesn't have a multi-user server version (a la Oracle or MySQL).
The issue with catalogs stored on network drives is that SQLite relies on the filesystem to provide correctly working file locking, and when the LR team was testing this 12 years ago, many implementations of network file systems didn't implement file locking correctly. The SQLite documentation warned about it:
"One should note that POSIX advisory locking is known to be buggy or even unimplemented on many NFS implementations (including recent versions of Mac OS X) and that there are reports of locking problems for network filesystems under Windows. Your best defense is to not use SQLite for files on a network filesystem."
Senior Adobe engineer Dan Tull did some quickie experiments in 2007 and found that by simply disconnecting a network cable, he could corrupt a LR catalog stored on a file server. Given that there were many potential network-attached storage (NAS) products with this problem, Adobe felt, not unreasonably, that the risk and cost of users corrupting their catalogs was too high. There used to be a hidden config.lua switch to override LR's prohibition, but that stopped working a long time ago.
See this long discussion topic starting here, including Dan Tull's contributions: Lightroom Classic and CC: Allow Catalog to be stored on a networked drive. | Photoshop Family Custom...
Twelve years later, and the landscape has changed considerably -- Windows SMB implementations are much more mature and Samba has become the standard non-Microsoft implementation of the SMB protocol. LR has switched to using the write-ahead-logging mode (WAL) of SQLite, which has different issues with network files. I'm not aware of anyone who has done recent tests with network-stored LR catalogs or written authoritatively about SQLite and newer file-server implementations.
Adobe has shown no inclination to re-examine the issue. Last year they changed LR to use the higher-performance write-ahead logging mode of SQLite and broke the longstanding ability to import from catalogs stored on network servers. Even though the fix for that is trivial, Adobe hasn't implemented it. I'm not sure the LR team has the requisite engineering skills to re-examine competently network storage of catalogs.
Finally, note that there are two somewhat distinct issues: Allowing users one-user-at-time access to catalogs stored on network servers, and allowing multiple users to access server-stored catalogs concurrently. The former is perhaps solvable with a small amount of re-engineering of how LR uses SQLite or perhaps doing a relatively low-level port to another database engine. The latter would require significant re-engineering of LR, introducing an application-level server architecture (and probably a database more amenable to that architecture, e.g. MySQL), and introducing new concepts and features into the user interface.
First you are breaking the terms of the license by having 2 separate individuals, 2 different people, use the same license. The 2 installs is so one person can use the software on 2 separate computers but NOT at the same time.
To answer your actual question, that was done above.
Adobe allows CC to be installed on 2 computers. No license violations here.
The file 'license.html", buried in the application folder, says:
2.4 Portable or Home Computer Use. The primary user of the Computer on which the Software is installed may install a second copy of the Software for his or her exclusive use on either a portable Computer or a Computer located at his or her home, provided the Software on the portable or home Computer is not used at the same time as the Software on the primary Computer.
(Emphasis added.) Here's the entire license:
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14.12 Certified Documents. If the Software allows you to author and validate Certified Documents, then this Section applies.
14.12.1 Certified Documents and CD Services. A "Certified Document" or "CD" is a PDF file that has been digitally signed using (a) the Software CD feature set; (b) a certificate; and (c) a "private" encryption key that corresponds to the "public" key in the certificate. Authoring of a CD requires that you obtain a certificate from an authorized CD Service Provider. "CD Service Provider" is an independent third party service vendor listed at http://www.adobe.com/security/partners_cds.html . Validation of a CD requires CD Services from the CD Service Provider that issued the certificate. "CD Services" are services provided by CD Service Providers, including but not limited to (a) certificates issued by such CD Service Provider for use with the Software’s CD feature set; (b) services related to issuance of certificates; and (c) other services related to certificates, including but not limited to verification services.
14.12.2 CD Service Providers. Although the Software provides CD authoring and validation features, Adobe does not supply the necessary CD Services required to use these features. Purchasing, availability and responsibility for the CD Services are between you and the CD Service Provider. Before you rely upon any CD, any digital signature applied thereto, and/or any related CD Services, you must first review and agree to the applicable Issuer Statement and this agreement. "Issuer Statement" means the terms and conditions under which each CD Service Provider offers CD Services (see the links onhttp://www.adobe.com/security/partners_cds.html ), including for example any subscriber agreements, relying party agreements, certificate policies and practice statements, and Section 14.12 of this agreement. By validating a CD using CD Services, you acknowledge and agree that (a) the certificate used to digitally sign a CD may be revoked at the time of verification, making the digital signature on the CD appear valid when in fact it is not; (b) the security or integrity of a CD may be compromised due to an act or omission by the signer of the CD, the applicable CD Service Provider, or any other third party; and (c) you must read, understand, and be bound by the applicable Issuer Statement.
14.12.3 Warranty Disclaimer and Limitation of Liability. CD Service Providers offer CD Services solely in accordance with the applicable Issuer Statement. EXCEPT AS MAY BE PROVIDED IN AN ISSUER STATEMENT, YOUR USE OF CD SERVICES IS AT YOUR OWN RISK. SEE SECTIONS 7 AND 8 FOR WARRANTY DISCLAIMERS AND LIABILITY LIMITATIONS WHICH GOVERN CD SERVICES.
14.12.4 Indemnity. You agree to hold Adobe and any applicable CD Service Provider (except as expressly provided in its Issuer Statement) harmless from any and all liabilities, losses, actions, damages, or claims (including all reasonable expenses, costs, and attorneys fees) arising out of or relating to any use of, or reliance on, any CD Service, including, without limitation (a) reliance on an expired or revoked certificate; (b) improper verification of a certificate; (c) use of a certificate other than as permitted by any applicable Issuer Statement, this agreement or applicable law; (d) failure to exercise reasonable judgment under the circumstances in relying on the CD Services; or (e) failure to perform any of the obligations as required in an applicable Issuer Statement.
14.12.5 Third Party Beneficiaries. You agree that any CD Service Provider you utilize will be a third party beneficiary with respect to this Section of this agreement and that such CD Service Provider will have the right to enforce such provisions in its own name as if the CD Service Provider were Adobe.
14.13 Acrobat Professional Feature. If the Software includes Acrobat Professional, the Software includes enabling technology that allows you to enable PDF documents with certain features through the use of a digital credential located within the Software (“Key”). You agree not to access, attempt to access, control, disable, remove, use or distribute the Key for any purpose.
If you have any questions regarding this agreement or if you wish to request any information from Adobe please use the address and contact information included with this product to contact the Adobe office serving your jurisdiction.
Adobe, After Effects and Version Cue are either the registered trademarks or trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated in the United States and/or other countries.
It has been awhle since I have done this, but you could use an iscsi drive. Have to manage the unmounting and mounting which is a pain, but it worksed when I last tested it two or three years ago.
I think we've established that Lightroom sucks for workgroup environments where we want to share a common catalog. Dealing with digital assets is increasingly a problem for any size group with multiple contributors and multiple designers/editors.
That said, does anyone out there know of a reasonable, quasi-efficient system for sharing a digital library on a network drive? A million years ago, this was the issue with fonts. Now we're dealing with images/videos, etc.