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Transferring Lightroom Photos and Catalogue from Old to New External Hard Drive

Community Beginner ,
Aug 17, 2020

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I'm sorry if someone has already asked these questions. I also apologize for not being very computer savvy which makes my questions long-winded.  Double sorry!

 

I store about 70,000 photos and the Lightroom Catalogue to them on an external hard drive connected to my desktop PC computer.  My 2 TB hard drive was getting old and running out of space to store my growing portfolio. So, I purchased a new Seagate 6 TB hard drive several weeks ago and thought I'd transferred the catalogue and all the photos to the new hard drive, but I've discovered three problems:

 

PROBLEM #1: Most, but not all the .jpg or .tiff files did not transfer to the new hard drive.  I thought I'd transferred them all. However, I just discovered that groups of files on certain subjects are missing. For example, I just discovered that about 300 photos from my mom's 100th birthday were missing. I found they still existed on the old hard drive (which still functions). So, I copied and pasted them into the new drive and  the photos are back in business. I'm concerned there are other photos missing from my new hard drive. DOES ANYONE KNOW HOW TO GLOBALLY COMPARE THE 2 DRIVES TO SEE RELATIVELY QUICKLY WHICH FILES ARE MISSING FROM THE NEW DRIVE?

 

PROBLEM #2: Many, or  most, of the photos have an ! in the upper right corner of the image and when I click on the image in Develop mode, I get an error message which reads essentially: "PA123.jpg could not be used because the original file could not be located. Would you like to locate it?"  If the file did transfer to the new hard drive, I can re-locate the file fairly quickly and correct the location on groups of photos-- i.e., the 5,10, or 20 photos which I took of particular event and were then originally stored in the same location on the drive.  However, doing that with about 2/3 of my 70,000 photos would be a time consuming process. DOES ANYONE KNOW HOW TO "RE-LOCATE" THESE PHOTOS GLOBALLY, IN ONE FELL SWOOP? (OR, IF NOT, HOW I CAN AVOID THIS PROBLEM THE NEXT TIME I REPLACE A HARD DRIVE AND TRANSFER PHOTOS TO IT?

 

PROBLEM #3:  Before I transferred the files to the new hard drive, I indexed about 80% of the photos using LR's keyword indexing. Now, however, most of the indexing is lost. DOES ANYONE KNOW HOW TO RE-INSTALL THE INDEXING WHICH EXISTED BEFORE I TRANSFERRED THE IMAGES?

 

These photos create a visual record of my family dating back over 100 years. THANKS FOR WHATEVER  HELP YOU CAN  PROVIDE TO RESURRECT THIS ARCHIVE!! 

John G. 

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Transferring Lightroom Photos and Catalogue from Old to New External Hard Drive

Community Beginner ,
Aug 17, 2020

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I'm sorry if someone has already asked these questions. I also apologize for not being very computer savvy which makes my questions long-winded.  Double sorry!

 

I store about 70,000 photos and the Lightroom Catalogue to them on an external hard drive connected to my desktop PC computer.  My 2 TB hard drive was getting old and running out of space to store my growing portfolio. So, I purchased a new Seagate 6 TB hard drive several weeks ago and thought I'd transferred the catalogue and all the photos to the new hard drive, but I've discovered three problems:

 

PROBLEM #1: Most, but not all the .jpg or .tiff files did not transfer to the new hard drive.  I thought I'd transferred them all. However, I just discovered that groups of files on certain subjects are missing. For example, I just discovered that about 300 photos from my mom's 100th birthday were missing. I found they still existed on the old hard drive (which still functions). So, I copied and pasted them into the new drive and  the photos are back in business. I'm concerned there are other photos missing from my new hard drive. DOES ANYONE KNOW HOW TO GLOBALLY COMPARE THE 2 DRIVES TO SEE RELATIVELY QUICKLY WHICH FILES ARE MISSING FROM THE NEW DRIVE?

 

PROBLEM #2: Many, or  most, of the photos have an ! in the upper right corner of the image and when I click on the image in Develop mode, I get an error message which reads essentially: "PA123.jpg could not be used because the original file could not be located. Would you like to locate it?"  If the file did transfer to the new hard drive, I can re-locate the file fairly quickly and correct the location on groups of photos-- i.e., the 5,10, or 20 photos which I took of particular event and were then originally stored in the same location on the drive.  However, doing that with about 2/3 of my 70,000 photos would be a time consuming process. DOES ANYONE KNOW HOW TO "RE-LOCATE" THESE PHOTOS GLOBALLY, IN ONE FELL SWOOP? (OR, IF NOT, HOW I CAN AVOID THIS PROBLEM THE NEXT TIME I REPLACE A HARD DRIVE AND TRANSFER PHOTOS TO IT?

 

PROBLEM #3:  Before I transferred the files to the new hard drive, I indexed about 80% of the photos using LR's keyword indexing. Now, however, most of the indexing is lost. DOES ANYONE KNOW HOW TO RE-INSTALL THE INDEXING WHICH EXISTED BEFORE I TRANSFERRED THE IMAGES?

 

These photos create a visual record of my family dating back over 100 years. THANKS FOR WHATEVER  HELP YOU CAN  PROVIDE TO RESURRECT THIS ARCHIVE!! 

John G. 

Topics

How to, Problem or error, Sync, Windows

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 18, 2020

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You did say HOW you did the transfer.

One method is to do the transfer inside of LR. Unfortunately, this can be problematic sometimes. When moving large numbers of files, LR sometimes drops the ball.

 

The method with fewer errors:

- Using Windows File Explorer or Mac Finder, "copy" the LR catalog (*.LrCat) file and all its associated subfolders to the new drive. This is easily done by copying the whole folder that the LrCat file is in.

- Using Windows File Explorer or Mac Finder, "copy" the root folder(s) containing your pictures to the new drive.

- Note: These are all "copy" commands, not "move" commands.

- Open the catalog on the new drive by double-clicking it or start LrC manually and use the /file/open catalog/ command to open the catalog on the new drive.

- In the LR Folders panel, right-click on the top-most folder that you copied, select "relocate", navigate to the folder on the new drive. Repeat for each top-level folder.

 

After you have verified that the files were copied correctly, you can go back with FileExplorer/Finder and delete the files off the old drive.

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 18, 2020

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This is maybe a solution for your storage issue:
But it does leave the Catalog in-situ I believe.
If your disk is nearly full, you would be wise to move the photos to a different disk (instructions: https://www.lightroomqueen.com/move-photos-another-hard-drive-leaving-catalog/), while keeping them cataloged in the Lightroom catalog, and in the future importing photos onto this different disk instead of the internal disk.

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LEGEND ,
Aug 18, 2020

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JohnMSP: if you can start over from scratch, use the instructions at https://www.lightroomqueen.com/move-photos-another-hard-drive-leaving-catalog/ as suggested by Tony_see. Otherwise, you can reconnect entire folders and entire hierarchies of folders in one action, via these instructions: http://www.computer-darkroom.com/lr2_find_folder/find-folder.htm

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