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Very high disk space consumption per image

New Here ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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Last night, I imported 282 RAW image of 24 MB each. This should consume about 6.8 GB (= 282 x 24).

I was monitoring the hard disk free space size before and after the import and quiting LrC. In my calculation, LrC consumed 50MB per image, more than twice the size of the original RAW file. Is this normal?

 

Also  if anyone can point me to a good article on tips saving the disk space using LrC, I'd appreciate it.

 

I'm using LrC 10.2 on macOS 11.6.8.

 

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LEGEND ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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LrC also creates Preview files and other things than just the photos.

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New Here ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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I understand that but I would think the generated data is larger than the RAW file. Is it?

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LEGEND ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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I assume you are actually talking about 24 Megapixel images, as in a 24 Megapixel sensor in camera, not 24MB.

 

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New Here ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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No, I am takling about actual file size.

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Community Expert ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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Are you converting to DNG? If so, have you checked the box to embed a (non functional, but later extractable) copy of the original proprietary camera Raw.

 

Otherwise: in the Import dialog is an option to save a second copy elsewhere, for each imported file.

 

Plus, LrC will make previews as has already been mentioned: if the drive volume concerned is the same as where the Catalog lives that could be it too. 

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New Here ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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No, I'm not using DNG. The raw files are saved as they are in the hard drive. No second copy is created. I use the standard size preview, not the 1:1 preview, and the catalog file is currently taking up 6.7 GB, but that's for the all the images I have, not the newly imported ones, I assume.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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Did you create smart previews?

 

Have you looked at the import folder and added up all the space taken? Are the photos in the import folder actually 50MB now? (Did you import them twice? There has recently been a bug reported about photos appearing twice).

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New Here ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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The import folder only has the RAW files, 24 MB each. 50 MB is a computed disk consumption per image. I am trying to figure out how, where, why the extra 26 MB (=50 - 24) is used. I don't really know what smart preview is but I tend to avoid anything "smart" if I am presented a choice.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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Of course, its always possible the extra 26 MB have nothing to do with LrC.

 

I remember I bought a new computer earlier this year. The internal HD was 1TB, which I thought was huge considering I don't keep my photos on it. And one day I checked and it had about 300 GB free. Not really terribly concerning, but I was surprised by this. And then the next time I checked, there was 500 GB free. Do I know what happened? No clue. Was it Lightroom Classic doing something? Almost certainly not.

 

So in my mind it is possible that what you are seeing has nothing to do with LrC.

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Community Expert ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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A smart preview is just 1 MB, so forget about that. The only logical explanation I can think of is that you have the option below checked in the import dialog, meaning Lightroom makes a backup copy (not added to the catalog, so you may not realise it) of each image. If the destination of this backup copy is the same disk, then the math adds up very well.

 

1 2022-10-05 21-11-02.jpg

 

-- Johan W. Elzenga

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LEGEND ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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Could you humor me, if at least to prove a hunch wrong. Outside of LrC, using finder, look  at the property's of one of those RAW files, having nothing to do with LrC, how large is that RAW file? A screenshot would be nice.

 

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Community Expert ,
Oct 05, 2022 Oct 05, 2022

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Just to eliminate - your import is either an Add (where the files are already on the relevant hard drive) or else a Copy (where they are coming in from another form of storage)?

 

Also, is there anything else than Lightroom Classic managed image files happening on this disk drive? Maybe if you have one to hand, try importing some fresh images to a separate external drive (that is not used for anything else) and see what that does to the free space on that drive. You can also make a new test Catalog within this same drive, import the same images into that (Add), and watch what happens with the free space on this separate drive as a result.

 

As others have noted, there may be something related or unrelated going on coincidentally - especially if this is your main system drive. I am not a MacOS person but - Time Machine?

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New Here ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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Rather than replying to each comment, let me clarify my situation:

  • I was importing these RAW files from the camera's SD card.
  • No second copy option was chosen at the time of import. I verified that no duplicate files are found in the internal hard drive.
  • I don't remember if Smart Preview was used during the import but I don't think so.
  • Each raw file in the hard drive is 25 MB in size.
  • But 50 MB per image was consumed.
  • No other application that could consume gigabytes of the the was running during the import.

 

My intention of this post was to ask other user's experience, as to how much space is consumed, in relation to the size of the raw file, rather than a group trouble shooting. Can someone share their experience?

 

I moved many RAW files to an external hard drive to create some free space on the internal hard drive in mean while.

 

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Community Expert ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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The only place LrC will write additional information, in addition to the storage used for copying your images from the SD card,  is the Lightroom sub-folder which by default should be in the Pictures folder of your computer.

That sub-folder contains your Catalog file,  Preview data file, and other support data files. See the screen capture below.

You will see that on my system the only file that uses any significant storage is the Previews Data file.

Your Catalog Preferences can control the size of the Previews Data file. As you can see from the screen capture I have chosen to use a specific size and not standard previews. If I had used Standard Previews the file would have been over 250 GB. My Catalog contains 51,000 images.

This was done to speed up the import process of my iMac Mid 2015, 27" 5K monitor. see details of my system in my signature line.

Screenshot 2022-10-06 at 7.13.53 AM.pngScreenshot 2022-10-06 at 7.34.48 AM.png   

 

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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LEGEND ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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But 50 MB per image was consumed.

Consumed where? A screensbhot please.

 

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Community Expert ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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At GoldingD, 

It's possible the Computer resources are getting low and there is a lot of temp files being created to complete the import completed. The author has not provided much info with respect to the Computer he is using.

 

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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New Here ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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> Consumed where?

Good question. That is exactly what I'd like to know.

 

> A screensbhot please.

 

I don't have one. I wrote down what the available space was before and after importing the images. These are the numbers that you get if you select a hard drive in Finder and press Command-I. 

Before: 69.32 GB (7.83 GB purgeable)
After: 56.29 GB (9.3 GB purgeable)

 

I assumed "purgeable" means macOS could squeeze out this extra space in addition to the space shown before the parens. From this I calculated that (69.32+7.83) - (56.29+9.30) = 13.03 GB = 13,030 MB has been consumed by importing 282 photos. From this, I concluded that each photo consumed 13,030/282 = 46.21 MB.

I'm attaching some screeshots to help you understand my claim. Please note that the screen shots were taken after I moved many photos to an external hard drive. Now I have 70+ GB free space.

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LEGEND ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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Ok, your first screenshot shows that my hunch was wrong. Not a syntax issue sensor megapixel vs MB.

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Community Expert ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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Do you use Apple Time Machine and if so, is its backup disk available? MacOS uses a new disk format called APFS, that allows for snapshots. Time Machine may have created a snapshot of the images you added. Next time it runs, it should release that space again. Other backup utilities, like Carbon Copy Cloner can also create fairly large snapshots. These snapshot are purgeable, but the Finder does not always show that.

 

-- Johan W. Elzenga

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Community Expert ,
Oct 07, 2022 Oct 07, 2022

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LATEST
quote

I wrote down what the available space was before and after importing the images. These are the numbers that you get if you select a hard drive in Finder and press Command-I. 

By @Teo B

 

Just noting that method is increasingly unreliable in more recent versions of macOS using APFS, due to the varied number of large temporary and often invisible files that are constantly being created and purged dynamically (like the APFS snapshots Johan mentioned), but also because of advanced file system features of APFS such as quotas, reserves, clones, compression… Howard Oakley cautions against those kinds of calculations on his excellent Mac blog (Explainer: Disk free space) .

 

quote

First, free space available now doesn’t necessarily represent the amount of space committed to the items already stored on that disk. Two special types of file in APFS make this even more complex: sparse and clone files…There’s one more twist which can sometimes catch out the unwary: never try estimating free space by totalling the file sizes of a volume’s contents.…Those oddities probably reflect storage saved by compression, and the effects of sparse and clone files…

 

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New Here ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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I tried to reply to this taking a good amount of time. Then the forum system rejected my response 😞 I lost steam at this point. I will make another effort later...

 

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New Here ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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Oh, actually, now my resply showed up but as a reply to a wrong comment. I have no idea why this is happening...

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LEGEND ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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Also, and I should have included with previous,

What camera?

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LEGEND ,
Oct 06, 2022 Oct 06, 2022

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Thank you for the screenshots. First I will repost the applicable screenshot so that it is directly visible:

 

Authors Screenshot 1Authors Screenshot 1

 

A few points come up

 

1. In the first screenshot, in the upper shot, the Finder info on the photo locations is where your math, sort of, should work,

"about 6.8 GB (= 282 x 24)"

That folder contains the photos. Not that not all photos have the same MB even though same camera, and probably same compression or lack of.

 

2. The total space occupied by the photos does not relate exactly to the space used by the catalog or it's associated preview folders. Looking again at that first screenshot, but the lower portion of it, the folder the catalog is in. Previews for one can eat a lot of space up. More than the photos. See other members replies above on that.

 

3. An observation to make, in the screenshot below, the files/folders withing the red box are the pertainate ones to your posting, the Previews, and the catalog. The ones in Blue boxes also have a direct relation to the current catalogue, but are not pertaining to the issue at hand.

 

Image 003.png

 

4. And these are older catalog(s) or older associated file/folders to those old catalogs:

Image 002.png

 

 

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