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Lightroom CC: Keywords don't sync from mobile to Classic

New Here ,
Oct 27, 2017

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I got thousands of photos with thousands of keywords tagged in Lightroom Classic CC - unfortunately these do not synch with Lightroom CC. Seems like a MAJOR bug to me. Can anyone help, please?

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Correct answer by Jim_Wilde | Adobe Community Professional

https://forums.adobe.com/people/Jao+vdL  wrote

This is by design. Lightroom CC cannot deal with the hierarchical keyword structure that classic can. Lightroom CC only has a flat keyword architecture so they decided to stop syncing the keywords between Classic and CC. It used to be able to but since the release of CC and Lightroom Classic it stopped doing that.

Not really, Jao....it's never been possible to sync keywords between Lightroom (5, CC2015, or Classic) and Lightroom mobile (now including LRCC). The ability to sync Titles and Captions was added sometime during the CC2015 cycle, but never keywords (or Location data).

However , it is currently possible (though this may be a bug or loophole) to effect a one-way, one-time transfer of any existing keywords and Location data in an image from Classic to the mobile ecosystem apps. If you write metadata to XMP in Classic (either automatically or via the Ctrl/Cmd+S keyboard shortcut), before you enable sync on the image in Classic, you should find that any of the cloud-based apps will show that data. But as I said, it's a one-time deal.....subsequent changes to keywords or location data made in Classic will not sync to the other apps, and changes made in the cloud-based apps will only sync to the other cloud-based apps but not to Classic. Because of that lack on ongoing syncing between Classic and the cloud, this "feature" may not be very useful.

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Lightroom CC: Keywords don't sync from mobile to Classic

New Here ,
Oct 27, 2017

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I got thousands of photos with thousands of keywords tagged in Lightroom Classic CC - unfortunately these do not synch with Lightroom CC. Seems like a MAJOR bug to me. Can anyone help, please?

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Jim_Wilde | Adobe Community Professional

https://forums.adobe.com/people/Jao+vdL  wrote

This is by design. Lightroom CC cannot deal with the hierarchical keyword structure that classic can. Lightroom CC only has a flat keyword architecture so they decided to stop syncing the keywords between Classic and CC. It used to be able to but since the release of CC and Lightroom Classic it stopped doing that.

Not really, Jao....it's never been possible to sync keywords between Lightroom (5, CC2015, or Classic) and Lightroom mobile (now including LRCC). The ability to sync Titles and Captions was added sometime during the CC2015 cycle, but never keywords (or Location data).

However , it is currently possible (though this may be a bug or loophole) to effect a one-way, one-time transfer of any existing keywords and Location data in an image from Classic to the mobile ecosystem apps. If you write metadata to XMP in Classic (either automatically or via the Ctrl/Cmd+S keyboard shortcut), before you enable sync on the image in Classic, you should find that any of the cloud-based apps will show that data. But as I said, it's a one-time deal.....subsequent changes to keywords or location data made in Classic will not sync to the other apps, and changes made in the cloud-based apps will only sync to the other cloud-based apps but not to Classic. Because of that lack on ongoing syncing between Classic and the cloud, this "feature" may not be very useful.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 27, 2017

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This is by design. Lightroom CC cannot deal with the hierarchical keyword structure that classic can. Lightroom CC only has a flat keyword architecture so they decided to stop syncing the keywords between Classic and CC. It used to be able to but since the release of CC and Lightroom Classic it stopped doing that.

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Explorer ,
Oct 27, 2017

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Is this documented anywhere?  Your explanation makes some sense but it would have been nice to have a note that says keywords do not sync.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 28, 2017

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Agreed. They haven't really done much to lay this out clearly for people. Most of my info comes from third party sites like https://www.lightroomqueen.com/lightroom-cc-vs-classic-features/ ​ and others.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 06, 2017

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https://forums.adobe.com/people/Jao+vdL  wrote

This is by design. Lightroom CC cannot deal with the hierarchical keyword structure that classic can. Lightroom CC only has a flat keyword architecture so they decided to stop syncing the keywords between Classic and CC. It used to be able to but since the release of CC and Lightroom Classic it stopped doing that.

Not really, Jao....it's never been possible to sync keywords between Lightroom (5, CC2015, or Classic) and Lightroom mobile (now including LRCC). The ability to sync Titles and Captions was added sometime during the CC2015 cycle, but never keywords (or Location data).

However , it is currently possible (though this may be a bug or loophole) to effect a one-way, one-time transfer of any existing keywords and Location data in an image from Classic to the mobile ecosystem apps. If you write metadata to XMP in Classic (either automatically or via the Ctrl/Cmd+S keyboard shortcut), before you enable sync on the image in Classic, you should find that any of the cloud-based apps will show that data. But as I said, it's a one-time deal.....subsequent changes to keywords or location data made in Classic will not sync to the other apps, and changes made in the cloud-based apps will only sync to the other cloud-based apps but not to Classic. Because of that lack on ongoing syncing between Classic and the cloud, this "feature" may not be very useful.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 06, 2017

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Thanks Jim, never realized that keywords never synced. Apparently I never needed it or used it as the interface to keyboarding in the mobile apps was and is so unwieldy anyway.

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Community Beginner ,
Nov 07, 2017

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More and more i get the feeling LR CLASSIC will not support me in the future like LR did so many years 😞

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Community Beginner ,
Nov 11, 2017

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this does not seem to work anymore as of 2017_11_12. I have some pictures in my Lightroom CC (new) library with the identical keywords as in LR classic, so this must have worked about 2 weeks ago....

this is really a shame, i would love to switch to the NEW LR CC (online), but i do like to add the faces and names to the pictures.... this is really a must have for me!

can anyone figure out how to get the keywords over into the online version??? or a statement from Adobe if this is a feature/bug/something they are working on??

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 12, 2017

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As I said in my earlier post, keywords have never "synced" between LR Classic (and the earlier mobile-enabled LR5 and LRCC2015 versions) and the cloud ecosystem (LRWeb, LRmobile on iOS/Android, and the recently introduced LRCC desktop app). "Syncing" means data flows both ways, i.e. make a keyword change in LRm and it should appear in LRCC or LRWeb....because those apps do "sync" with each other. But the keyword change will NOT appear in Classic, because keywords do not sync from/to Classic.

Also as I said, if your keywords have been written into XMP in Classic, and then the image is added to a sync collection, those keywords will appear in LRCC and the other cloud apps....but that's a one time, one way transfer. So if you are seeing the same keywords in Classic and LRCC, then it's likely you've previously written the metadata into XMP. But there are also a couple of other possibilities to explain what you are seeing....any DNG file created in Classic using Photo Merge (i.e. Panorama or HDR) automatically has the metadata embedded in the XMP section of the file when it's created. IIRC, this also applies to any PSD/Tiff file created by the "Edit in Photoshop" process using Classic. Similarly if you export a file from Classic with full metadata, then add the exported file back to the Classic catalog and then sync it, any keywords would then appear in LRCC.

So there's likely an explanation for those cases of keywords appearing in Classic and LRCC, but you could pick one file and check it out. There may be other edge cases that I've not discovered yet.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 12, 2017

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klemensMS  wrote

can anyone figure out how to get the keywords over into the online version??? or a statement from Adobe if this is a feature/bug/something they are working on??

The only statement we have from Adobe is that there will be no further development of syncing features in Classic. If there is enough demand though they might reconsider that. The site feedback.photoshop.com is where you can ask for features such as this. There are lots of threads there asking for either selective or smart preview sync from LR CC or for better keyword sync from Classic as well as full raw sync from Classic.

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Community Beginner ,
Nov 12, 2017

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thank you all for the replies 🙂

I do support the new approach to move to an all cloud (-first) environment and I am generally very impressed with search results when looking for a tree, or house or any other object. However, this is not yet true for tagging faces and recognising people, so I will stick to LR Classic as my main area of work to make sure I can find appropriate pictures later (and after years and years still remember who some of these people in the picture were!!)

I can now confirm JimWilde approach, the way it works for me is as follows:

Import pictures directly into LR Classic:

1) edit the picture, add keywords, etc.

2) hit cmd+s /ctrl+s to force LR to save the metadata

3) then add the image to a collection that is synced with LR mobile

==> all tags show up online and I can find people

This is ok for me, as "people in pictures" don't tend to move around (unless of cause you are a student at Hogwarts), so adding keywords first works for me!

If you are importing your pictures through the new LR CC, then

1) wait for the pictures and the new collection to show up in LR Classic (the picture shows up in the "Lightroom Mobile Images" folder, the collection in the Collection-set called "From Lr mobile).

2) remove the image from the collection, making sure it is also removed from all online devices

3) follow steps 1-3 from above!

Thanks all for your awesome and quick replies!

I would have hoped for some better communication from Adobe. I guess this just confirms that they were fully aware that this "implementation" would not impress anyone!

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Explorer ,
Nov 26, 2017

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I fully agree to klemensMS position.

I strongly believe that clould architecture is the future and that Adobe is totally right to move in that direction.

However I am very disappointed to understantd that key words are not (and will not be) synced between LR Classic and LR CC. As I have about 90,000 photographies in my catalog, it's definitaly not an option to use LR CC. I hope this will change in the future, as LR CC seems to be a big step forward.

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Community Beginner ,
Dec 11, 2017

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I agree. Without keyword syncing, it would be a to big step for me to leave Classic and start over again. I have spend the last 2 year to categorize my 40.000 photo's, including keywords. Don't want to do that part over again.

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Explorer ,
Nov 05, 2017

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Seems like a huge wasted opportunity for Adobe. Their Sensei automatic keyword tool needs training, like any AI function. Allowing it access to the vast keyword database from users, with the appropriate permissions, would speed up the training immensely. I, for one , would be happy to support this, except the private keywords that don’t get published either. The most important mobile function for me is keywording, but it’s useless if not linked to Classic. Baffling failure.

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Explorer ,
Dec 22, 2017

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So I used Lightroom Mobile on my iPad to edit a few snaps before posting online, whilst doing this I added a few keywords which have not synchronised back to Lightroom Classic.

I am now wondering why I'd bother adding keywords to images using my iPad, what is the use case?

Thank you for your help.

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Community Beginner ,
Dec 22, 2017

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absolutely none (IMO)! I have switched to using the caption/title field to sync the important bits of information between CC / Classic /Windows&Mac files as these two fields are metadata fields that I hope are future proof (fingers crossed!).

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Explorer ,
Jan 05, 2018

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This is not a matter of iPad ! I'm a photographer, not the guy who takes pictures with a smartphone ! I do not intend to use LR CC on a smartphone or a tablet (except for lookin to the photos), but I intend to use LR CC on my laptop when I am not at home.

Keywords are definitely necessary to handle efficientaly a 100 000 photos library. Using caption/title field is indeed a palliative, but compared to the LR Classic keyword organization, this is really very poor, slow and inefficient. LR Classic offers a lot of help to manage keywords : LR CC none ; there is even no keyword list to help !

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 06, 2018

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I agree ☝️

Keywords sync should be a very basic feature to implement. It’s not a technical limitation but a deliberate choice NOT to sync them...

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Dec 22, 2017

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It rather depends on what you're trying to achieve. If the goal was to use your iPad to enter keywords that would then sync with Classic, then clearly that would indeed be pointless as keywords do not sync between Classic and the cloud ecosystem (although any keywords entered on one of the LRCC apps would help the search system on the rest of the cloud apps).

Many users, however, are not trying to integrate the cloud into their Classic workflow, and instead have opted to use only the cloud-based apps. For those users, entering keywords on their iPad (or LRCC on a desktop) makes a lot more sense.

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Explorer ,
Dec 23, 2017

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JimWilde​ Thank you for your reply, it rather confirms what I expected.

I'm not sure I can ever see a situation where I'd abandon the Classic desktop version as I have 80,000 images and I cannot see how I'd manage these just in a cloud based solution; perhaps time will tell!

Regards, Ian.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Dec 24, 2017

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In a few years internet connections are going to be faster and storage cheaper and that amount of images won’t be a problem anymore. Of course image sizes will expand at a similar rate so perhaps we’ll never get there. This is inevitably the future but the tech is not quite there yet.

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 05, 2018

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This is an unfortunate limitation. And especially since it's neither expected behavior, nor intuitive to discover.

I just made the mistake of tagging a few hundred photos in Lightroom CC with the expectations that they would show up in Lightroom Classic. After an hour of troubleshooting why this wasn't working, I came here to report this as a bug—only to discover it's not supported.

Perhaps that's fine (adding keywords on a mobile device isn't ideal) but if the mobile app displays keywords then it's a reasonable expectation that they will be synchronized correctly. If keywords are going to be supported in Lightroom CC but not synchronized with Lightroom Classic then it'd be useful to set that expectation in the interface—e.g., as a popup warning when a user first tries to edit keywords in a synchronized collection. Without that, this is a recipe for confusion and, ultimately, frustration.

I do understand the issue if they use different keyword systems, as suggested above. But that doesn't seem to make much sense here given that 1) to my knowledge, Lightroom Classic doesn't even support hierarchical keywords by default anymore, and 2) even if you enable them, it's easy for them to be treated as interchangeable since Lightroom Classic can be configured to treat keywords with periods or slashes as hierarchical.

Jeremy

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Explorer ,
Apr 11, 2019

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Okay, since there is a conflict between hierarchical keywords and flat keywords, can't Adobe just implement an option to turn off the hierarchical keywords in LR Classic and allow synchronization?

In my case I don't use hierarchical keywords anyway and even though it is a benefit that Title and Caption can be added through mobile device or via the web based LR CC, syncing keywords will make a things even better and will save me even more time, which is crucial.

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Community Beginner ,
Apr 11, 2019

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They could but they won’t.

Despite what’s being said, the limitation is not technical but political: Adobe won’t update sync features on Classic because they push towards LR CC.

To be honest, I don‘t know how long Classic will be maintained when LR CC will (if ever) have sufficient pro features.

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Explorer ,
Apr 12, 2019

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Well, they should put more functionality into LR CC then, because now it looks like a simple web interface for basic interactions with images. I understand that the vast majority of users have more basic set of needs, but a small group of professionals need much more. I have metadata presets on multiple championship riders and drivers and using them saves tons of time. This is not at all present in LR CC. As far as syncing goes, it would mean a world to me if keywords could be applied via the web interface, because that would mean I get to shoot a session, make a selection, and while I go and shoot the next session, someone else could do the metadata input for me. Now we are only halfway there. Of course there are workarounds. Since the Title and Caption fields sync, I can call group of images by searching for a word that is in there and put the keywords on that selection of images. The other way would be for the other person to fill in all the metadata (title, caption, keywords) and I'll just export the JPG files through LRCC. But does it really need to be that complicated?

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New Here ,
Nov 08, 2019

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I would like to make a personal comment on this thread. I have been a LR Classic and CC subscriber since April 2017 and I am surprised to read that keyword synchronization has never been possible. Personally, it has worked very well since April 2017 (I had more than 20'000 photos at that time with keywords) and has done so for about a year. Then there was an update that stopped this function. I can't say exactly when or the number of the program generation. Best regards

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New Here ,
Nov 08, 2019

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Another feedback I can give as an amateur user: I chose Lightroom by subscription precisely because I can synchronize my photos (and keywords) with my iPad and thus have my photo library with me when I'm travelling or simply outside my home. I don't see how this feature would put LR in competition with LR CC. This seems to me to be a bit of a lack of vision of the possible uses of the various categories of Adobe Creative Cloud clients.

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