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Unchecking "Store a copy of all originals..." attempts to move files to computer hard drive

New Here ,
Jan 17, 2022 Jan 17, 2022

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I use Lightrom CC. I have about 500GB of photos. My laptop (Macbook Air) hard drive does not have that much space on it (256GB). For years, I have had the "Store a copy of all originals to the specified location" and had an external hard drive selected. Up until now, everything has been fine.

 

I bought a new iMac and also a new external (1TB SSD) to use exclusevly for Lightroom backups. I installed Lightroom on the iMac and selected the "Store a copy..." option and now there's a copy of all my photos on the SSD. That all worked fine.

 

Here's the problem. I *deselected* the "Store a copy..." option on my laptop because I plan on using the space on the other hard drive for something else. After doing this, every time I re-open lightroom on my laptop, it attempts to move all of the photos from the external hard drive back to my laptop. It fills up my laptop hard drive and then says there's no longer enough room. I don't need a copy of all of my photos on my laptop or even on the old external hard drive anymore, and I certainly don't want my laptop hard drive full. I plan to do most of my editing from now on on my iMac, but I still want the option of using Lightroom on my laptop. Sooo, what's the best way around this? Should I delete the folder that has all the backups on my old external hard drive? Delete and re-install lightroom on my laptop? Would doing any of this have an adverse reaction on my photos that are in the cloud? Again, all of my photos are backed up on my new external hard drive. But, now, they are also partially backed up on my laptop and partially on the old external hard drive. 

 

Thanks for any advice! 

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Community Expert ,
Jan 18, 2022 Jan 18, 2022

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Lightroom sometimes needs a local copy of your original image, for the simple reason that editting an original from the cloud would be very slow (depending on the speed of your internet connection). That is probably why deselecting that option does copy some images back to your internal drive. You can specify in Preferences - Local Storage how much disk space Lightroom is allowed to use. If you really want to limit that, then set the local cache size to zero percent.

 

-- Johan W. Elzenga

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New Here ,
Jan 18, 2022 Jan 18, 2022

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It's actually trying to copy them *all* back, and that's regardless of what photo cache size I select (currently 5%). It just keeps doing it until it fills up my hard drive (there was about 120 GB of free space before the process started). 

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Community Expert ,
Jan 18, 2022 Jan 18, 2022

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Right-click on the 'Lightroom library.lrlibrary' package. Choose 'Show package contents'. That will open the package as a folder, so you can manually delete the originals. Lightroom housekeeping is indeed sometimes rather slow in deleting originals it no longer needs.

 

-- Johan W. Elzenga

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