Importing pictures into Lightroom Classic has suddenly become horribly slow! Several minutes per photo! Actually, in the case of my current import of less than ten photos, it is officially frozen. Task manager shows Lightroom is using 35% of my CPU and 1.4 gigabytes of memory. I download photos from my camera before using LightRoom onto an external hard drive. When importing, I select "Copy" to copy the files into a separate folder named "Lightroom Masters" on the same external hard drive. I am on Windows 10 machine with 16 GB of RAM. What can I do?
Try a different drive first, even the internal one. This sounds like the drive is failing or the connecting cable is bad. Assuming your external drive is connected to a USB port, is it USB 3 (blue connectors)? The USB port could be going bad. Try another port. If you happen to be going through a USB hub, connect the drive directly to a USB port on the computer.