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Should Lightroom import settings from disk or overwrite disk settings from the catalog

Explorer ,
Mar 31, 2011 Mar 31, 2011

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When the 'up' arrow appears in a thumbnail and comes up with the message:

The metadata for one or more of these photos has been changed by another application. Should Lightroom import settings from disk or overwrite disk settings with those from the catalog?

What exactly does that mean?  This seems to happen every time I export an image to PS (CS5) and return to LR.  What exactly has changed?  What settings are being imported if I choose 'import settings from disk'.

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

People's Champ , Apr 01, 2011 Apr 01, 2011

I think it would be better not to think in terms of that LR "applies" edits. Since LR stores changes in the catalog, the changes are "applied" to the image only on Export. I think it wouldbe better to use the term "display" instead of "apply".

So then: When from LR you open a RAW image in PS the LR-edits done up to then are displayed in PS and then "applied" when you save from PS (remember PS CS5 opens the RAW image).

If you do more edits in PS and save these, LR will display these edits - you wil

...

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People's Champ ,
Mar 31, 2011 Mar 31, 2011

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When you "import settings from disk" then the edits that you did in PS will be imported into LR and previous edits that you did in Lr will be overwritten.

When you "overwrite disk settings" then the LR edits take precedence over edits in PS.

But this is only the principle. And this principle holds when you edit the same setting (for instance exposure or brightness) differently in PS than what you did before in LR . So for instance if you'd increase exposure in LR and the decrease it in PS then only one of the two can prevail - that's logical.

But usually we don't do the same edits in Lr and in PS differently - that would make no sense.

I regularly use PS if I have to make extensive use of the clone tool (and the patch tool) since the clone tool in Lr is OK for a few "splotches" but not for hundreds. After saving the clone tool edits in PS and returning to LR I receiove the message you are talking about. I always chose "overwrite disk setings". This has the follwing effect: Previous LR edits (for instance develop presets on import) will be retained but the clone tool edits done in PS will alo be retained (not overwritten , not un-done!). LR-overwrites do not change the pixel-based clone-edits of PS.

So basically, as long as you don't edit the same "issue" differently in PS than what you did in LR select "overwrite settings" and you'll "have the best of both worlds".

WW

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Explorer ,
Mar 31, 2011 Mar 31, 2011

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But... if we export the image (typically a RAW file) from LR to PS, aren't the LR adjustments applied before it goes into PS?  And when we save it back (into LR) shouldn't those edits be still there along with the PS edits?

I should maybe specify that I usually export a RAW file rather than "Edit In", however, if you use Edit In and 'apply LR adjustments', then the same should hold true, shouldn't it?

So if I adjust, lets say, brightness on an image in LR - export it to PS for further editing (clone/heal/retouch) and then maybe tweek the brightness a little with a curves adjustment - and save it - shouldn't that whole workflow from LR to PS back to LR be preserved in that newly saved file?

I can understand if you use Edit In with a tif or jpg file, you have to specify if you want to apply the LR adjustments or open the original, then the warning should appear.  But if you're starting with a RAW and ending up with a tif, for example, I would assume all the adjustments should follow the file.

Or am I way off base?

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People's Champ ,
Mar 31, 2011 Mar 31, 2011

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You wrote

So if I adjust, lets say, brightness on an image in LR - export it to PS for further editing (clone/heal/retouch) and then maybe tweek the brightness a little with a curves adjustment - and save it - shouldn't that whole workflow from LR to PS back to LR be preserved in that newly saved file?

No, LR saves all edits in the Catalog (and ONLY in the Catalog) whereas PS saves the edits in the image-file (in the pixels itself when you don't preserve the adjustment layers).

LR now "perceives" that there are edits in its catalog and there are edits in the image file. I don't know if LR actually compares those two sets of edits (I think not) but it wants to make sure that there is no conflict and sends you the message in question.

WW

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Explorer ,
Mar 31, 2011 Mar 31, 2011

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I understand that LR saves edits in the catalog, but when you export the file these edits are 'processed' during the export so when the image opens in PS, those edits are already applied. At least that's what I've been told in the past. So anything you do in PS is applied on top of the LR edits.  When you're finished in PS, and save the file, the image should be saved with everything you've done to - which it does.  It's obvious if you convert to B&W in PS and then save the file - it appears as B&W in LR.  So I really don't understand WHAT Metadata needs to be imported or overwritten.  It just doesn't make sense to me.

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People's Champ ,
Mar 31, 2011 Mar 31, 2011

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You wrote

When you're finished in PS, and save the file, the image should be saved with everything you've done to - which it does.


Correct. But then there is a discrepancy between your saved file and what is in the catalog.

The catalog still reflects the state prior to your edits in PS while the image file reflects the state after your PS-edits.

LR wants to reconcile this discrepancy and asks whhich of the two should prevail.

WW

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Explorer ,
Mar 31, 2011 Mar 31, 2011

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Hmmm.. Ok, so the file that LR creates upon export doesn't have the PS edits applied, yet.  After I'm done editing in PS and save the file, the image appears in LR, I guess kinda 'over-top' with the PS edits applied, but it really hasn't applied them?  Is that it?  If so, then you would really want to import the settings from disk so that the file will take on the PS edits, right? 

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People's Champ ,
Apr 01, 2011 Apr 01, 2011

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I think it would be better not to think in terms of that LR "applies" edits. Since LR stores changes in the catalog, the changes are "applied" to the image only on Export. I think it wouldbe better to use the term "display" instead of "apply".

So then: When from LR you open a RAW image in PS the LR-edits done up to then are displayed in PS and then "applied" when you save from PS (remember PS CS5 opens the RAW image).

If you do more edits in PS and save these, LR will display these edits - you will notice then on return from PS, LR will re-load the image. On "Save" PS applies (and here the word "apply" is correct) the edits by writing them into the image file. LR reads the saved file and displays it with the PS-edits.

But the LR catalog settings are still in the state of the point in time before you opened the image in PS. This is so because PS writes the edits into the image file and not into the LR catalog. So now you have one set of edits in the LR Catalog and another set of edits in the image file.

To describe this as "kinda 'over-top' with the PS edits applied, but it really hasn't applied them" doesn't fit the bill because LR "applies" only on Export. What LR does at this point is reading the image file with the PS-edits and displaying the image accordingly.

But LR "senses" that what is displayed is not in line of what's in the catalog.

This is the conflict that Lr wants to resolve by popping the message.

You say " If so, then you would really want to import the settings from disk so that the file will take on the PS edits, right?  "

Yes, if you want your PS-edits to override your previous LR-edits.

I have now come to a workflow where I do not make edits in PS that I can do in LR - and I do not do edits in LR that PS is better at.

Practically speaking: In PS I do cloning and also noise reduction when the LR-NR is not enough (for instance in noisy scans).

I don't do any tonal or color adjustments in PS because it's easier in Lr and gives me better results.

When the message in question appears, I select "Overwrite disk settings" - this preserves any Lr edits and does not overwrite the cloning.

WW

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Explorer ,
Apr 01, 2011 Apr 01, 2011

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Wow.. no wonder it gets confusing.. but that explained it quite well.  Thanks WW!

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New Here ,
Sep 13, 2012 Sep 13, 2012

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This is way old now but I have a question as I'm at this point now.

Are you saying that the catalog will retain the LR adjustments and will also display the PS adjustments?

If not, then how do you print with the PS adjustments thru LR? Or what does LR print

Thanks,

Richard

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People's Champ ,
Sep 13, 2012 Sep 13, 2012

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batcher2,

The catalog will retain the Lr adjustments but the PS adjustments are NOT in the catalog; they are in the image file (=in the image pixels).

Lr reads the image pixels and displays the image according to the (PS edited) image pixels until you tell Lr to override the display with the Lr edits that are stored in the catalog.

Since the PS edits are displayed in Lr they will also be printed; once you tell Lr to override the PS edits with different Lr edits, the image will be displayed and printed with the Lr edits. BUT when you go back in the history palette to the state of the image as it came out of PS, you can print with the PS edits.

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New Here ,
Sep 13, 2012 Sep 13, 2012

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Thanks, I now understand the best of both worlds.

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Community Expert ,
Sep 13, 2012 Sep 13, 2012

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I’m glad to see that I’m not the only one that gets confused by the LR metadata warning.

There's another PS/LR/PS editing scenario that I use, which hasn't been mentioned here. All of my film scanning is first processed in PS using TIF, 16 bit/color, Pro Photo RGB image files. I do frame cropping, spot removal, and sometimes add one or more adjustment layers. Next I import the TIF image files into LR and process them similar to camera images, but they are obviously not raw files.

Most often I will then go back into PS to do more spot removal and other "destructive" processing. When I return to LR the ‘Metadata was changed externally' arrow is present, but If I select 'Import settings from disk' the arrow does not go away. I have always selected 'Overwrite settings, but it would seem for this PS/LR/PS editing process the warning is not necessary and LR should just retain the current metadata. If I remove the metadata warning or not, the image still looks correct and as expected in both LR and PS.

What exactly is changed in the metadata by PS and then by the LR ‘Overwrite settings?’

Yours Truly Confused.

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People's Champ ,
Sep 13, 2012 Sep 13, 2012

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trshaner,

I also do a lot of scanning and import the TIFFs into Lr. The scenario you describe is familiar to me.

The interplay between Lr and PS is governed by the fact that PS saves the edits in the image file (=in the image pixels) wheras Lr saves the edits in its catalog - or you can have Lr save in the metadata but never in the image pixels. You know this, I'm sure. And PS never saves in the metadata; it saves only in the image pixels.

When you do some edits in Lr, then open your image in PS to do some spotting (clone tool or patch tool), save in PS and then return to Lr you will have noticed that Lr displays your spotting correctly. In fact, if you return to Lr before PS has finished the saving process, you will see that Lr reloads the image as soon as PS has finished saving it. So, Lr displays the edits done in PS correctly: it "senses' that the image file has been changed (by PS) and reloads it.

But when you opened the image from Lr in PS you probably selected <Edit Original>, because you don't want an unnecessary copy. By selecting this option the image is opened in PS without your previous Lr edits. This does not matter since you only want to do some spotting.

After the saving in PS, Lr "senses" that the image file is different than what is in the catalog. Lr "senses" that there have some edits been done, now on reloading this image  "edits" are not in the image file. Well, they can't be in the image file because Lr saves the edits in the catalog. But there is a discrepancy between what Lr displays on reloading the image file and the data in the catalog. Lr then sends the metadata warning. In fact, I do not think of this message as a warning, because if you do not react to it, nothing will happen. I think of it a message alerting me that I have the option of overwriting the edits in the Lr catalog (by <reading metadata from file>) or by applying the edits in the Lr catalog to the file (By <Overwrite settings>). The latter option does nothing to the image pixels; Lr never writes in the image pixels. And irrespective of which option you select, your spotting doen in PS will be displayed in Lr.

You can at this point safely select <Overwrite Settings> because the spotting is in the image pixels whereas the data you overwrite with are not image pixels (Lr doesn't save image pixels in its catalog, as you know) but develop data from the catalog. And this is what you want: You want your image with the develop settings from Lr and the spotting from PS.

Message was edited by: web-weaver

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Community Expert ,
Sep 13, 2012 Sep 13, 2012

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Thanks, that's what I thought.

So LR is just comparing the TIF file's 'Date Modified' field, and then updating the catalog with status 'Up to date' and the new metadata date. If this were a TIF (or other type) file edited in ACR with XMP sidecar (or DNG), then you would have the alternate choice to update the image with the externally changed develop settings, correct. So if editing externally only in PS this will never be the case, which is why it seems redundant.

I can see where a preference setting to allow LR to auotmatically update the catalog for this editing scenario would be helpful. No XMP or DNG, then no change to the Develop settings, and LR automatically updates the catalog metadata. Obviously it would be safer NOT to allow this, but then Adobe can place a warning message next to the preferences setting.

Am I missing something?

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People's Champ ,
Sep 13, 2012 Sep 13, 2012

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Maybe it is edundant incase of a TIFF file edited in PS.

But keep in mind that probably not many Lr users work with TIFF files - only those of us who used film in the "good ol' days".

Although I read this morning in the specs for the new D600 that it can save as TIFF.

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Community Expert ,
Sep 13, 2012 Sep 13, 2012

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I think I will keep my workflow simple, I have used Lightroom since inception as my RAW file processor and have recently purchased PS CS6 (previousely used Elements and other pixel editing software).

I will now use PS CS for things LR cannot do but I will stay away from xmp, DNG. As far as I am concerned ACR in PS CS serves no purpose that I can't do in LR.

If I need to edit in PS, sending a tiff is fine.

Regards, Denis: iMac mid-2015, 5K 27”, GPU 2GB, Ram 24GB, HDD 3TB, macOS 11.7.1 BigSur,; LrC 12.0.1, Lr 6.0, Ps 24.0, ACR 15.0,; Camera OM-D E-M1

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People's Champ ,
Sep 13, 2012 Sep 13, 2012

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DdeGannes,

Yes, that's what I've come to in my workflow, too: Use PS only for things that Lr cannot do so well or so fast: Clone tool, patch tool, content aware fill.

And for my scanned TIFFs: Noise reduction through an edge mask, localized sharpening through a mask.

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Community Beginner ,
Nov 25, 2022 Nov 25, 2022

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Hi,

I am not fully at this point but the conversation is the closest I found to my issue.

as I clicked on the exclamation mark of one photo from a catalog (imported from a hard drive) I received this message "There was an unknown error while writing metadata to this photo. Retry?" and I mistakenly clicked on "import settings from disk" and I have now lost ALL my edits. Please tell me there is a way to retrieve the edits....

Thank you

 

AB

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LEGEND ,
Nov 25, 2022 Nov 25, 2022

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Please start a new thread with your problem, rather than forcing it into an 11 year old thread on a different topic. Explain the problem in detail. Please include all relevant information, including the following:

 

Adobe Forum.png

 

 

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Community Expert ,
Nov 25, 2022 Nov 25, 2022

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LATEST

The History panel contains the prior states of your image through successive prior edits. So just click to the step immediately "before" this latest iimport settings action, and you will again see it as it was.

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LEGEND ,
Sep 13, 2012 Sep 13, 2012

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I use the comparison feature of ChangeManager: 'Compare Catalog to Disk' to get a complete list of all develop setting and/or metadata differences between xmp on disk and equivalent in Lr catalog, whenever there is a discrepancy that I don't understand / expect. Warning: Mac users will have to jump through a few hoops to get to the coveted list, but Windows users: not so much.

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Community Expert ,
Sep 14, 2012 Sep 14, 2012

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Thank you, I agree with all of your responses and I rarely use ACR. The primary reason you would need to select 'Overwrite settings' when you get a metadata changed warning in LR is if you did use both ACR AND LR on a TIF file. I'm not suggesting that as a workflow method. You also might want to 'Overwrite settings' if you've changed the file's metadata and/or keywords externally using Adobe Bridge or another metadata editor.

When working with Adobe Creative Suite in a graphic arts or publishing environment Bridge is a much better tool for keeping track of all your material, including camera images, scan images, Illustrator, InDesign, PDF, and many other file types that LR can’t import. So that is part of the dilemma in trying to use both LR and PS or LR and Bridge. That's where Rob Cole's ChangeManager would be helpful and the very point I was trying to convey.

I’d rather work a little smarter and prevent the need upfront. What I am doing now is to do all non-destructive editing in LR (not ACR), including keyword and metadata changes. File types that LR can’t import are all edited externally, including metadata. So I have to use both Bridge and LR when searching for project collateral materials.

This is where it gets confusing. I can sync TIF and JPEG metadata changes made in Bridge inside LR using 'Overwrite settings.  Is there a way to have LR write metadata (not develop settings) to both exported and imported TIF and JPEG files, so that the metadata will also appear in Adobe Bridge?

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People's Champ ,
Sep 14, 2012 Sep 14, 2012

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trshaner,

You write: " Is there a way to have LR write metadata (not develop settings) to both exported and imported TIF and JPEG files, so that the metadata will also appear in Adobe Bridge?"

Yes, there is. You have to <Save metadata to file>, either automatically in >Catalog Settings >Metadata tab or by >Metadata >Save metadata to file (in the Library Module) or by >Photo >Save metadata to file (in the Develop Module).

In case of a JPG this will write the metadata into the header of the file (but not into the image pixels!) and in case of a TIFF it will create (or write into an already existing) XMP-file.

In both cases, Bridge will be able to read and display all the edits done in Lr, not only dvelop edits but all library metadata (keywords, stars, captions, titles, and color lables). For color labels to work, the description of the color labels has to be identical in Bridge and in Lr, down to upper / lowercase, hyphens, commas, etc.

There are a few things that Bridge will not be able to display: Collections, stacking, virtual copies.

In case you meant: Can Lr write only non-develop metadata to file? No, when you do <Save metadata to file> this includes all data for the selected picture(s), develop data and library data.

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Community Expert ,
Sep 14, 2012 Sep 14, 2012

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Thanks web-weaver. It looks like this requires that 'Automatically write changes into XMP' be selected, but I don't need or want XMP files. It seems like there should be a preference option for 'Automatically save metadata changes inside JPEG, TIFF, and PSD files. Having this option in addition to the current 'Include Develop settings inside JPEG, TIFF, and PSD files' unchecked should work. LR exported TIFF and JPEG files currently have the metadata (not develop settings) automatically written into the file.

CTRL + S keys will do the same thing manually, but I was hoping for a way to have it done automatically. Maybe I'll add it to the Bug Report & Feature Request site. This would be very useful for anyone who needs to use both LR  and Adobe Bridge for digital asset management.

Catalog.jpg

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