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Where are my photos being stored in LR CC?

New Here ,
Aug 08, 2019

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Hi, everyone. I need help from all my Lr. gurus!

After a recent update, a few months ago I noticed that Lr. changed how images are stored. I'll try to explain without confusing everyone.

Normally, when I upload images into Lr., it creates a Lr. access link and that link i usually stored on my external hard drive. The actual photos are then placed by Lr into a folder with a date (ex. 2019-08-01), and I keep those organized by dates on an external hard drive as well. All edits, including PSCC edits done via Lr automatically go into that folder. So usually my desktop computer is not clogged up with edited images as I use it only to edit images and not store anything on them.

During import into Lr, in the Library section, it shows FROM and TO. And recently I noticed that Lr. stopped creating image folders like 2019-08-01, but rather started placing all edits into the folder where images were originally imported from, which is on an external hard drive. And I didn't mind at all as long as I knew where my edits were being stored at.

So I kept editing, thinking all Lr. work is on an external hard drive. However, my desktop memory was getting smaller and smaller with every edit. I decided to test and see if I accidentally re-directed the link during import. Nope, in Lr. it still shows that my images and edits are stored on external hard drive, but my computer memory is still getting smaller without me doing anything else except editing. It looks like all edits are also stored somewhere on LOCAL DISK (C) but I opened every file in there and can't seem to find it.

Please help. Any advice is greatly appreciated!

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Where are my photos being stored in LR CC?

New Here ,
Aug 08, 2019

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Hi, everyone. I need help from all my Lr. gurus!

After a recent update, a few months ago I noticed that Lr. changed how images are stored. I'll try to explain without confusing everyone.

Normally, when I upload images into Lr., it creates a Lr. access link and that link i usually stored on my external hard drive. The actual photos are then placed by Lr into a folder with a date (ex. 2019-08-01), and I keep those organized by dates on an external hard drive as well. All edits, including PSCC edits done via Lr automatically go into that folder. So usually my desktop computer is not clogged up with edited images as I use it only to edit images and not store anything on them.

During import into Lr, in the Library section, it shows FROM and TO. And recently I noticed that Lr. stopped creating image folders like 2019-08-01, but rather started placing all edits into the folder where images were originally imported from, which is on an external hard drive. And I didn't mind at all as long as I knew where my edits were being stored at.

So I kept editing, thinking all Lr. work is on an external hard drive. However, my desktop memory was getting smaller and smaller with every edit. I decided to test and see if I accidentally re-directed the link during import. Nope, in Lr. it still shows that my images and edits are stored on external hard drive, but my computer memory is still getting smaller without me doing anything else except editing. It looks like all edits are also stored somewhere on LOCAL DISK (C) but I opened every file in there and can't seem to find it.

Please help. Any advice is greatly appreciated!

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 08, 2019

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You need to clarify a few things so that your questions can be answered. First of all, if you are up to date there is no Lightroom CC anymore. There is Lightroom Classic, which is the desktop version which stores all images locally. And there is the Lightroom, which is the cloud version which stores images in the cloud and in a folder on your computer. Which version are you referring to?

Lightroom edits are not applied to the images. Lightroom edits are stored in the catalog. So if the main hard drive space is getting smaller that would indicate that your catalog is increasing in size or that the images are in reality being imported to the main hard drive. Do you actually know where the images are being stored?

And what version (exact version) of Lightroom are you using?

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New Here ,
Aug 08, 2019

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When I open Lr., on top left it shows Adobe Lightroom CC 2015 (?!) Not sure why as I have Adobe monthly plan for Lr and PS. I know for sure I'm not using Lr. Classic. The images/catalogs are being stored on an external hard drive which wy I'm wondering why my computer's memory is getting smaller. Is it possible Lr is creating a backup/copies of images and where do I find them on LOCAL DISK? Thank you for all your help.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 09, 2019

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You are using the predecessor of Lightroom Classic, not what is now simply called ‘Lightroom’. Why didn’t you update to Lightroom Classic? You are paying for it...

All edits, including PSCC edits done via Lr automatically go into that folder. So usually my desktop computer is not clogged up with edited images as I use it only to edit images and not store anything on them.”

No, the edits are stored in the catalog, not in the folder of the images. Maybe you set Lightroom to write edits to XMP, but that is extra and does not replace what is stored in the catalog. The default location of the catalog is your Pictures folder on your internal hard disk, so if you did not change this location, then that could explain what you are seeing.

-- Johan W. Elzenga, http://www.johanfoto.com

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LEGEND ,
Aug 09, 2019

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lazzato34127809  wrote

When I open Lr., on top left it shows Adobe Lightroom CC 2015 (?!) Not sure why as I have Adobe monthly plan for Lr and PS. I know for sure I'm not using Lr. Classic.

If your operating system does not support Lightroom Classic, then you can't upgrade to Lightroom Classic. So what is the exact version NUMBER of your operating system?

The images/catalogs are being stored on an external hard drive which wy I'm  wondering why my computer's memory is getting smaller. Is it possible Lr is creating a backup/copies of images and where do I find them on LOCAL DISK? Thank you for all your help.

If your computer's internal disk space is decreasing (is that what you mean by computer memory??), this is most likely because every time you import your photos, some space on the disk (usually not a lot, compared to the size of the photos themselves) is used to contain the previews used by Lightroom. You may also have accidentally been importing the photos to your computer's internal disk (even though you claim the photos are being stored elsewhere) and you need to check this. Lightroom only makes backups at import, and then you have complete control over where these go; they would go on your computers internal disk only if you specifically  told LR to do this, and again you need to specifically check this. Lightroom makes catalog backups which should not go to your computers internal disk, but I think that is the default location, so again you need to specifically check to see where these backups are going.

In other words, Lightroom only does what YOU tell it to do (although you may have done something accidentally and are not aware of it). Lightroom does not do anything to your photos without your instruction to do so.

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New Here ,
Aug 09, 2019

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If your operating system does not support Lightroom Classic, then you can't upgrade to Lightroom Classic. So what is the exact version NUMBER of your operating system?

OS of my desktop is Windows 10, version 1903.

If your computer's internal disk space is decreasing (is that what you mean by computer memory??), this is most likely because every time you import your photos, some space on the disk (usually not a lot, compared to the size of the photos themselves) is used to contain the previews used by Lightroom. You may also have accidentally been importing the photos to your computer's internal disk (even though you claim the photos are being stored elsewhere) and you need to check this. Lightroom only makes backups at import, and then you have complete control over where these go; they would go on your computers internal disk only if you specifically  told LR to do this, and again you need to specifically check this. Lightroom makes catalog backups which should not go to your computers internal disk, but I think that is the default location, so again you need to specifically check to see where these backups are going.

In other words, Lightroom only does what YOU tell it to do (although you may have done something accidentally and are not aware of it). Lightroom does not do anything to your photos without your instruction to do so.

I'm suspecting that too. But, moving forward, how do I find and remove that folder/catalog that's clogging up my internal disk space? Yesterday I spent two hours opening every file on disk C and couldn't find anything. I need to resolve this real soon, for now, I've been moving other files to the external drive to get a bit more space.

P.S. When importing files to Lr. from [any folder] it shows it's going to [My Catalog] but not showing where this My Catalog is located. When searching the whole computer for My Catalog, nothing is coming up What am I doing wrong and how do I fix it? Thank you for all your help in advance!

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New Here ,
Aug 09, 2019

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"You are using the predecessor of Lightroom Classic, not what is now simply called ‘Lightroom’. Why didn’t you update to Lightroom Classic? You are paying for it..."

To answer your question when the Classic version came out, I didn't switch to it because many photographers were saying it was still glitchy (?), so I kept working in a standard Lightroom or so I thought I did until yesterday when I realized that I'm using an outdated version.

There is nothing in my PICTURES folder

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 09, 2019

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The default location of your catalog is your Pictures folder. If you choose Lightroom Catalog Settings - General, it will show you the location and a button to go there in Windows Explorer.

You would need to move the entire catalog folder to the external disk, not just the catalog file (which has the .lrcat extension). Then double click the catalog file in its new location to let Lightroom know where it is. You only need to do that once.

-- Johan W. Elzenga, http://www.johanfoto.com

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New Here ,
Aug 09, 2019

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"The default location of your catalog is your Pictures folder. If you choose Lightroom Catalog Settings - General, it will show you the location and a button to go there in Windows Explorer."

Upon checking Catalog Settings, it shows that the catalogs are on an external drive. Is it possible maybe a backup catalog somehow is being stored somewhere in the computer? How do I check for that and to see where exactly it is?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 09, 2019

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Unlikely. Lightroom can make a backup of its catalog on quit, but the default location of that backup is a folder called ‘backups’ inside the catalog folder. You can change that in the dialog that asks you if you want to make the backup. And the catalog file is not that big anyway.

When you import images, you can check a box to make a secondary copy of the imported images. It’s all the way to the top of the right panel. Maybe that box is checked and the location for that secondary copy is set to your internal drive?

-- Johan W. Elzenga, http://www.johanfoto.com

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New Here ,
Aug 09, 2019

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The box for secondary copy is unchecked, and I have not been using this feature for a long time. I'm so dumbfounded of what's going on here. Just edited a few more images and lost 2 more gigabytes. Any other ideas? How do I stop it?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 09, 2019

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How large is your Camera Raw cache? It's in the Lightroom preferences - Performance. Purge it and perhaps set it a little lower.

-- Johan W. Elzenga, http://www.johanfoto.com

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LEGEND ,
Aug 09, 2019

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lazzato34127809  wrote

The box for secondary copy is unchecked, and I have not been using this feature for a long time. I'm so dumbfounded of what's going on here. Just edited a few more images and lost 2 more gigabytes. Any other ideas? How do I stop it?

Even if LR was somehow mysteriously making copies of your photos and placing them on your internal hard disk (despite the fact that Lightroom does not do this), its impossible for a few (how many exactly is a "few" in this case?) edited photos to take up 2 gigabytes.

Have you actually done a search, using your operating system's search feature, for very large files? Have you done a search for files with creation data of today (I assume that's when you did the editing and found 2 gigabytes disappeared)?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Aug 09, 2019

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lazzato34127809  wrote

"The default location of your catalog is your Pictures folder. If you choose Lightroom Catalog Settings - General, it will show you the location and a button to go there in Windows Explorer."

Upon checking Catalog Settings, it shows that the catalogs are on an external drive. Is it possible maybe a backup catalog somehow is being stored somewhere in the computer? How do I check for that and to see where exactly it is?

When Lightroom prompts you to backup your catalog, it indicates where that backup will be placed and will give you the option to choose where the backup will be stored. If it isn't going to be put what you want it then you have the option to change it.

Capture.JPG

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New Here ,
May 08, 2020

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I have removed my post as I found the answer thanks to Jim's previous post

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 08, 2020

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Where is that count coming from, Lightroom Classic or Lightroom (CC, i.e. the cloud)? Which program are you using? Do you know?

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New Here ,
May 09, 2020

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Hello Jim , Thanks to previous comments you made plus me reviewing my CC Plan I found I didn't have to worry about losing the 1,400 + pictures. And, since my last writing I've backed them all up on my external drive. Thank you for your response. Tom

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New Here ,
May 08, 2020

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I removed this post also as I found the answer in post made before by Jim. 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
May 08, 2020

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The answer depends on the Lightroom application you are using. If it is Lightroom Classic, then your photos are on local hard drives. They could be on mulitple different drives. If you are using Lightroom (the newer cloud version) then your photos are in the cloud.

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