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Moving Lightroom / Photoshop and Photo Catalog to an External Hard Drive

New Here ,
Jun 23, 2020

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I am looking for some good information on how to migrate Lightroom/Photoshop and my photo catalog to an external hard drive to free up space in my laptops internal drive. This is for a PC. I am not a super techie guy.....so baby steps are appreciated.  TIA

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Moving Lightroom / Photoshop and Photo Catalog to an External Hard Drive

New Here ,
Jun 23, 2020

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I am looking for some good information on how to migrate Lightroom/Photoshop and my photo catalog to an external hard drive to free up space in my laptops internal drive. This is for a PC. I am not a super techie guy.....so baby steps are appreciated.  TIA

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Jun 23, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 23, 2020

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Even "baby steps" are helped by a full understanding, so I would rather you read from an expert (see the links), than for me to try and describe methods.

Photoshop- nothing to migrate!

But for Lr-Classic you do have options-

1. Move only the photo files to the external drive and leave the Catalog database on the internal drive.

https://www.lightroomqueen.com/move-photos-another-hard-drive-leaving-catalog/

2. After a succesful completion of step #1 also move the Catalog to the external drive.

https://www.lightroomqueen.com/find-move-rename-catalog/

 

 

Regards. My System: Lr-Classic 10.0, Photoshop 22.0, Lightroom 4.0, Windows-10. Nikon DSLR.

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Jun 23, 2020 0
LEGEND ,
Jun 24, 2020

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"I am looking for some good information on how to migrate Lightroom/Photoshop and my photo catalog to an external hard drive to free up space in my laptops internal drive. This is for a PC. I am not a super techie guy.....so baby steps are appreciated. TIA"

 

Do you mean you want to move the software or move the photos or move the catalog? All of the above?

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Jun 24, 2020 0
New Here ,
Jun 24, 2020

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Hi....thanks for your responses.  I would like to move both the LR and PS programs and catalog of photos to the external HD.  The HD is an SSD drive.

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Jun 24, 2020 0
LEGEND ,
Jun 24, 2020

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You will have to un-install LR and PS from your internal HD and then re-install them on the external drive. In the Creative Cloud application, you have to select the option that lets you install in a different location than the default.

 

May I ask why you want to move the software? Normally, there is no need to do this.

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Jun 24, 2020 0
New Here ,
Jun 24, 2020

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Hi

 

The thought on moving both the LR and PS program was to provide more room on my existing internal HD and that LR and PS would work faster with the image catalog on the same drive.  Please correct me if I am in error. 

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Jun 24, 2020 0
LEGEND ,
Jun 24, 2020

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So this is about speed?

 

Can you describe what exact actions in Lightroom Classic are slow? Because slowness in some actions is disk based, and slowness in other actions is CPU based and other places it might be memory.

 

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Jun 24, 2020 0
New Here ,
Jun 24, 2020

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No it is not about speed but freeing up HD space on my internal HD.  At this point my internal HD is full and I am looking to gain additional space with the external HD

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Jun 24, 2020 0
LEGEND ,
Jun 24, 2020

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But you said  above "that LR and PS would work faster with the image catalog on the same drive". That's speed.

 

Disk space is a different issue. Normally, it is your photos that take up most of the disk space, if you move them to an external drive, that ought to be sufficient. Moving the catalog and/or moving the programs ought to be a last resort, and I advise you to avoid this. The reply from WobertC explains how to move the photos.

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Jun 24, 2020 0
New Here ,
Jun 24, 2020

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OK....thanks for your input and advice.  I will try to just move the photos first.

 

 

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Jun 24, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 25, 2020

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The software should be left on the internal drive. This is where it works best.

 

Yes, move the image files to the external drive. Use Windows File Explorer to do this. Then just update the location of the top-most folder in LrC.

 

As for the catalog, the database itself (*.LrCat), its size does not get that big. The cache (*.LrData folders) could be noticeable depending on the number of photos in the catalog. Putting the group of files/folders on the external drive is up to you.

 

Catalog backups. Very important. Make sure they are being saved to a different drive than the master catalog is on. If they are on the same drive as the catalog, one drive failure takes everything with it.

 

You will need a second external drive for your image backups.

 

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Jun 25, 2020 0