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Lightroom Classic: Option to stop syncing photos in a Collection when that Collection is stopped from syncing

17 Votes
Engaged ,
Oct 17, 2016 Oct 17, 2016

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Bring back the possibility to stop a Collection from being synced AND stop photos in that Collection from being synced as well, in one-step.

Since LR CC 2015.7 this happens when you stop syncing a Collection (clicking the little sync icon or deselecting Sync with Lightroom Mobile via mouse contextual menu):



(Now you have to go and find those photos in that Collection from All Synced Photographs and remove them from there. Too many steps, too cumbersome and too easy to make a user error.)

There still is the requested option to remove photos at the same time when you delete a Synced Collection instead of just stopping it from syncing:



That same option should appear for just stopping the Collection being synced as well.

The first dialog for stopping a Collection from being synced is messy altogether as it asks if the user wants to "Stop syncing these photos?" but the button for doesn't actually stop syncing the photos and instead keeps those photos synced to LR Mobile and Web and just stops syncing the Collection name.

So at least more correct title could be "Stop syncing this Collection?" and that's not enough as there needs to be a way to stop syncing a Collection AND stop syncing photos in that Collection, in one step (unless they are part of another Synced Collection).
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67 Comments
New Here ,
Apr 01, 2017 Apr 01, 2017

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Hi Victoria, 
I am know they do not take up as much space as collections that are synced. I Just know I have had to clear all synced in order to download more. I can get the number over 10,000 in a few depending on how many teams I am shooting. Just seems like a house keeping issue from an IT/QA standpoint. 

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Engaged ,
Apr 01, 2017 Apr 01, 2017

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Clearing the cache took me from 8.56G to 8.31G. Still doesn't qualify as "very little." 2,488 photos synced, 148 (6% of the total) set for offline use.

The presence of a cache is an implementation detail. Users shouldn't have to screw with esoteric software twiddling. If the app sees that I'm running out of space on the device, it should be dumping older stuff out of the cache automatically. From a user standpoint, we should be managing our space by adding or removing photos from sync'd collections, but since unsyncing doesn't work the way people expect it to, it's a big hassle.

Also, oddities like LR Mobile shows 2,488 photos in the Lightroom Photos section at the top, but adding up the number of photos in the sync'd collections below shows 2,487, while the All Synced Photographs collection in LR Desktop shows 2,481 photos. Three different values doesn't inspire confidence.

And the really screwy one, if in LR Desktop you select a photo in the All Synced Photographs collection and delete it to unsync it, the photo also gets deleted from the original collection it was in when you first turned on syncing. Collections are supposed to be independent of each other. If a photo is in collections A and B, and I delete it from A, it still remains in B. Unless you're dealing with the All Synced Photographs collection. There's a behavioral mismatch between this one collection and every other collection. You spend all this time learning how collections work, and now out of the blue there's this new one that works differently.

The way syncing used to work made sense. Turn the checkbox on: it's synced. Turn it off: it's unsynced. The way it works now doesn't.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 10, 2017 Apr 10, 2017

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Sorry for the delay replying - just back from vacation.

No, I agree 8.31GB is not very little. That amount of space sounds much higher than I'd expect for 2488 photos synced. I'd expect 1-2MB per photo for metadata, preview and smart preview. In Preferences, is it set to download full resolution? 

The difference in synced numbers between desktop and mobile could be down to videos. The difference between the total in collections and the Lightroom Photos total just means there's a photo synced that isn't in a collection.
-------------------------------------
The Lightroom Queen - Author of Adobe Lightroom Classic - The Missing FAQ and Adobe Lightroom - Edit Like a Pro books.

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Engaged ,
Apr 13, 2017 Apr 13, 2017

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Arjun, there seems to be a bug in select command when moving to All Synced Photographs:

  • while on Library mode and viewing a Collection, select all photographs
  • change the view to All Synced Photographs via mouse clicking All Synced Photographs
All selected photos get deselected.

This only happens when changing the view to All Synced Photographs, not when changing to All Photographs, Quick Collection or another Collection where those photos are part of or the Folder where those photographs remain.

This makes it even harder to get unnecessary synced photos unsynced.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 13, 2017 Apr 13, 2017

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What OS? I'm not seeing any problem on OSX (10.11), selected photos remain selected when changing to All Synced Photographs (though of course the selected images may not all be initially visible in the Grid if they aren't contiguous in the All Synced Photographs collection). The first image at least should be visible in the Grid, however, and scrolling up/down should reveal the rest.

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Engaged ,
May 15, 2017 May 15, 2017

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This is still a pain. As someone noticed before: "When a photo is not part of any Synced Collection it should not be synced". This folder "all synced photographs" leads me to confusion again an again. May be there are solutions, but in reality I end up with too much photos on my mobile device and it happened to me that I deleted photos accidentally from important collections by removing them from "all synced photographs".

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Engaged ,
May 28, 2017 May 28, 2017

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I wholeheartedly agree with the original poster here. The current behavior is frustrating and wrong. Photos that can be adding to sync as part of a collection should be removable from sync as part of a collection. As it is, the process for safely removing photos from sync is a 7 step process when it should be a single step process. I cannot figure out why anyone would want it to work the way it does now.

For the record, here is the simplest process I know that works right now:

1) Using the mostly hidden filter tool in the collections panel, select "Synced Collections" (click on the magnifying glass)
2) Individually select each of the synced collections. (Note: You don't want to select any collection sets here since that will end up selecting all the photos in that collection set, not just those from the visible collections)
3) Select all photos that are visible (all synced photos that are in a synced collection)
4) Select the "All Synced Photographs" collection which should maintain the selection.
5) In the Edit menu, select "Invert Selection"
6) Review selection to make extra sure nothing is selected incorrectly
7) Use the context menu to select "Remove from All Synced Photos"

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 28, 2017 May 28, 2017

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> I cannot figure out why anyone would want it to work the way it does now.

For people who are primarily cloud/mobile users, the current setup makes really good sense - why would they want their photos removed from the cloud just because they stopped syncing a collection (especially when the photo may be in many collections).

For people who originate on desktop and are just using the cloud for a specific purpose, the current behavior makes a lot less sense, especially for those who have limited bandwidth.

It's just a difference of perspective and starting point. Which is right is anyone's guess. Adobe had to pick one, based on their userbase stats. With enough votes on this request, their choice may change. I won't argue whether the current choice is right or wrong, but sometimes it helps to understand the reasoning. 
-------------------------------------
The Lightroom Queen - Author of Adobe Lightroom Classic - The Missing FAQ and Adobe Lightroom - Edit Like a Pro books.

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Engaged ,
May 30, 2017 May 30, 2017

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Jonathan, thanks for the hint "the mostly hidden filter tool" – I always was hoping for such a filter and was not aware, that it already exists. Should study LR again with a magnifying glass ... let's see, what can be found 😉

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Engaged ,
May 30, 2017 May 30, 2017

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As Victoria said, current way for managing Synced Collections in LIGHTROOM DESKTOP is designed for MOBILE USERS. That's insane. There got to be other way.

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Engaged ,
May 30, 2017 May 30, 2017

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Thanks Jonathan! Didn't know you can filter Collections to show only Synced Collections via clicking on magnifying glass. Helps a lot.

As for need to manually select each of the Synced Collection to be able to select all photos that are part of a Synced Collection, I have to say, again, that's insane.

I have 438 Synced Collections. What's Adobe's suggested workflow to remove photos from sync, you may ask. To manually remove photos not wanted to be synced from  All Synced Photographs collection. So, I go on and follow Jonathan's advice and first filter only Synced Collections to be shown, then mouse click 438 times to select each Synced Collection, select all visible photos, select All Synced Photographs collection, Invert Selection and choose Remove from All Synced Photographs.

That's no good.

(Yes, I needed to count the total of my Synced Collections by hand as LR doesn't have the function to select all Synced Collections and let the user know how many Collections are currently selected.)

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 03, 2017 Jul 03, 2017

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This hidden "features" are main reason why im considering to stop paying for this software :(. For who is this function good ?

Why removing photo from all synced photographs removes it also from desktop collection ?!

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Adobe Employee ,
Jul 03, 2017 Jul 03, 2017

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Hi Milan,

By desktop collection do you mean that this was removed from the actual folder in your desktop ?
Or a user created collection in Lightroom ?
If you remove an image from All synced Photographs, then it means that the photo can be unsynced (as all synced photos acts as a master collection for synced photographs). By removing an image from All synced photos, then it only removes the image from a synced collection.

Thanks,
Arjun

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 04, 2017 Jul 04, 2017

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Hi Arjun,

thank for your response,

photos were removed from the user-created collection in Lightroom OSX
Problem is missing prompt during unsyncing collection about removing that photos also from "all synced photos"

Because now I have about 15,000 photos in All synced photographs, but only 4 collections I want to keep synced. (3 for portfolio showcase and 1 ongoing project)

When I select all photos in All synced photographs and choose to remove them from All synced photographs it also disappear from ordinary collection inside Lightroom (that 4 collection I want to keep synced and with photos inside it !


There is no easy way how to select only synced photos that do not belong to any synced collection and remove them ( 7 points workaround from Jonathan Goforth works but there is a risk of user's error. )

"By removing an image from All synced photos, then it only removes the image from a synced collection." - I understand that at this moment it is not possible to sync or unsync individual photo inside collection therfore its not possible to remove it just from All synced collection while it is in one or more synced collection.

However, there are probably more solutions for unsyncing individual photos from All synced photos (better than completely removing the photo from the collection.)
For example, a prompt that photo cant be removed because it is part of one or more collections that are still synchronized or prompt that this action will synchronize the entire collections in which the affected photos are placed.

You can also forget about All synced photos in Lightroom on the desktop and use them only to upload from a mobile app (photos created using a mobile device). In this case, it makes sense that all synced photos acts as a master collection buf only for mobile content. 
For content imported directly to Lightroom master collection will be All Photographs.

There are probably even better way to meet different users needs. So please try to rethink it little bit.

with Regards,
Milan

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Engaged ,
Jul 04, 2017 Jul 04, 2017

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My recommendation would be to eliminate this "all synced photographs" completely from LR. I use both LR desktop and mobile a lot. Daily. Thousands of pics. But I never figure out, what is synced how and where. I try to add new pictures within LR mobile only into already existing collections, I've added a special "Sync Collection". I only use it to transfer pictures from LR mobile to my desktop. But sometimes when I shoot pictures in a hurry I forget to take the pictures on my mobile device only within a collection, and then the trouble begins. It's too complicated.

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Adobe Employee ,
Jul 04, 2017 Jul 04, 2017

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Hi Detlef,

The 'All Synced Photographs' is basically a master collection to filter all your synced photographs  from different Lr mobile clients.  So if you remove this master collection,  then the synced images will be a part of your catalog ('All photos') and synced collections if any. Filtering it out based on sync status is what is important here.

Milan and Detlef, thanks for your feedbacks anyway.  We will try to figure out what best can be done in this area.

Thanks,
Arjun

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Engaged ,
Jul 14, 2017 Jul 14, 2017

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Arjun, is there a solution for this daily problem: Let's say I have

- 100 pictures in "all synced photographs"
- 5 of them are part of a synced collection, let's name it "favourites"

Now I want to remove the other 95 from "all synced photographs". If select all 100 and say "remove from all synced photographs", the 5 nice pics are removed from "the collection called "favourites" too.

How can I get rid of all the syncing without destroying my other collections? Do I have to look at every one of the 100 pictures to check, whether it is in a collection or not?

Regards, Detlef

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Adobe Employee ,
Jul 14, 2017 Jul 14, 2017

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Hi Detlef,

The logic goes like this :

1) If an image is part of a synced collection, then invariably it is part of "All synced photographs" (ASP). Because  All synced photographs is a master collection which houses all the synced photos.

2) An image can be synced with/without being in a synced collection.

3) If you remove an image from  ASP, then it will be removed from all synced collections. But it cannot be the other way round. That means, if you remove an image from a synced collection, it need not necessarily delete from ASP (as there are chances that it might be referenced in other synced collections). 
So you have an option to choose whether you want the photo to be in ASP or not, when you remove an image from a synced collection.

Now coming back to your question,
a) Easier workaround is unsync "Favorites" collection.
b) Delete all photos from "All sync photos" (assuming you dont need the rest 95 to be synced)
c) Resync the Favorites collection (only your 5 photos are added back to ASP)

Hope this helps.

Thanks,
Arjun

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Engaged ,
Jul 14, 2017 Jul 14, 2017

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Arjun, thanks for the workaround!

The only problem is, that after unsyncing and resyncing all the public links are changed (I share a lot of them). So it is not a real solution, but at least a workaround that can help from time to time. Thanks for looking at the problem  – and hoping for a feature, that helps to unsync all pictures, that are not intended to be synced by collections. The actual status is so confusing. Imagine a photo would be removed from collection A just because I deleted it in collection B.

I still think this ASP should be sent to the moon and new pictures should be added to one of the existing collections instead. If a picture is removed from all the different synced collections, syncing stops.

Regards, Detlef

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 14, 2017 Jul 14, 2017

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A simpler workaround still:

1. Select the 5 images in "Favourites", then click on All Synced Photographs
2. Edit menu: Invert Selection
3. This will de-select the 5 images in "Favourites" and select the remaining 95.
4. Right-click on any one of those 95 and select "Remove from All Synced Photographs"

Doing it this way retains the existing shared links.

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Engaged ,
Jul 31, 2017 Jul 31, 2017

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My synced collections are now completely messed up! When I go to my iPad I suddenly have 2000+ Lightroom Photos. Where did that come from? Well it took me an hour to figure it out. It turns out that even though I had stopped syncing several Collections, Lightroom has decided for me - that I should keep syncing them to my iPad. Why? I don't want those Collections to appear on my iPad in one big amorphous lump. When I try to remove them from Catalog>All Synced Photographs, they are removed from the Collection on my desktop Lightroom also! Huh??? But I still want to keep those Collections on my desktop. They are valuable to me. I only want to stop syncing them, maybe permanently maybe only temporarily. And I had finally decided to get familiar with LR mobile and it started behaving great - easy to whip out the iPad and show a specific bunch of images to the relevant person. I got used to this great and wonderful resource. Now it's a mess. 

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Engaged ,
Jul 31, 2017 Jul 31, 2017

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By the way, we had been asking for a feature for LR mobile for over a year: watermarks on our images. Instead, we get a horrible feature nobody asked for. 

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Engaged ,
Jul 31, 2017 Jul 31, 2017

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Jonathan Goforth - thank you for saving me hours of frustration. It worked!

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Engaged ,
Jul 31, 2017 Jul 31, 2017

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And another thing: I was wondering why my Lightroom was acting so funny yesterday - so slow, taking ages to carry out each Develop module action. So I paused "Sync with LR mobile" and my workflow speeded back up to normal. I think what was happening is all that syncing was going on in the background - Lightroom carrying out its own new "All Synced Photographs" command. If so, it's another reason to abandon this terrible innovation as it really slows down the processing.

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Adobe Employee ,
Jul 31, 2017 Jul 31, 2017

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Hi Esther,

1) If an image is part of a synced collection, then invariably it is part of "All synced photographs" (ASP). Because  All synced photographs is a master collection which houses all the synced photos.

2) An image can be synced with/without being in a synced collection. 

3) If you remove an image from  ASP, then it will be removed from all synced collections. But it cannot be the other way round. That means, if you remove an image from a synced collection, it need not necessarily delete from ASP (as there are chances that it might be referenced in other synced collections). 
So you have an option to choose whether you want the photo to be in ASP or not, when you remove an image from a synced collection.

However, if you unsync a collection and then delete the photos from All synced photographs, then the images that is part of the unsynced collection are not deleted.

Thanks,
Arjun

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