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User backs up their photos AND their catalog with Google Drive
Google Drive does not allow to specify file's extensions to exclude anymore. User can just choose folder to be backed up.
Because of that user is forced to back up the whole "Lightroom catalog" folder and therefore Google Drive will backup lrdata files, which does not make sense.
If we could have the catalog (*.lrcat file) being alone in a folder, that would make it easy, straightforward and simple.
Right now, each time I just open LRC, Google Drive will automatically save tens of useless Gibabites instead of just the catalog when it gets updated.
Something missing in context.
Please post your backup workflow/process, step by step.
Let me clarify the context and give some elements:
So, current problematic workflow:
Nb: when I open LRC and I do not make any modifications, the catalog.lrcat file do not change and do not get sync (normal and expected) but the previews.lrdata file changes and therefore gets synced (also normal and expected but that is exactly what I do NOT want).
Expected better workflow:
Nb: to be fair, I think that Google Drive should allow users to single out files they want to sync. Currently not the case. it's been years. Don't think it will happen anytime soon.
I hope my workflow, context and pain are clearer.
Thank you very much for your time, your light and your patience. Have a great day.
Answering your specific issue, it is only possible to separate the catalog from the previews by using a symbolic link, i.e. move the previews to a different folder and replace them in the catalog folder with a symbolic link. That should work if done correctly, though you need to be wary that the backup software (Google Drive in your case) doesn't get cute and resolve the symbolic link itself, thus still ending up backing up the previews, even though they are in a different folder. I believe Dropbox can do something like that. It's worth at try at least.
Personally, however, I would consider doing things a little differently. For a start I would never have the catalog Backups folder in the same folder as the catalog itself, in fact I'd never even have it on the same drive. So in your situation I would only target the Backups folder for the automated Google Drive backup. Having an automated backup copying the catalog when it's open is likely to lead to the backup copy being in an unstable state, and thus unusable when needed....it's for that reason that I exclude the catalog files from my Time Machine backups. Instead I make frequent catalog backups on exit, and target the Backups folder in my regular system-wide backup process. I also backup the actual catalog files as well, but only when the catalog is not open (I use Chronosync for my system-wide backups, which DOES allow me to exclude the specific file-types and folders).
Thank you very much Jim Wilde.
I do confirm that using symbolic link does not work with Google Drive. the syncyng process flags it as an error.
In the same spirit, I spent a ton of time with Apple Automator to have a copy of the catalog in another folder but I couldn't find a perfect workflow either.
> For a start I would never have the catalog Backups folder in the same folder as the catalog itself
You are totally right. To be fair, it was a bit of a test. I actually never use the backup system, as I also back up manually my catalog.lrcat quite regularly on multiple mediums.
> Instead I make frequent catalog backups on exit, and target the Backups folder in my regular system-wide backup process.
I think that is my best option at the moment. I just wish I had the option to "replace existing file" to avoid tons of backup files that I need to remember to delete from time to time.
Thank you very much for your advice.