How do I move the catalog?

New Here ,
Jan 29, 2021 Jan 29, 2021

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I am trying out the trial of Elements 2021 because I have not used it since Elements 14.  I had the catalog saved and converted it but I want to move it to a different location.  It is currently on a 😧 drive which is a large HDD where all the photos or stored but I want to move it to the the C: drive which is an SSD that only has Windows and program files on it.  I want to see it if makes things faster by putting the catalog on that drive.  Anyways, when I go to manage catalog and select the one I am using (which is under custom location on the 😧 drive), I click move and it doesnt give me an option of a place to move it to.  

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 29, 2021 Jan 29, 2021

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I don't think you can move a catalog via the catalog manager while the catalog is in use/open.  However, you can simply move the catalog folder via File Explorer.  To find out the correct folder location for the open catalog, go to Help>System Info . . .

Elements 2021 also has a new feature which does a backup of just the catalog files without the media files.  You could use that and restore the catalog backup to your desired new location.

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 30, 2021 Jan 30, 2021

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To add to Greg's good answer:

It's a bit faster to copy and  paste the catalog folder from the explorer since the thumbnail cache does not need to be rebuilt.

I would not expect that storing the catalog on the SSD would make a noticeable difference in speed. What's critical is to have enough RAM and to set your scratch disk to the SSD.

Could you report back with your findings?

@Greg_S. 

Did you compare both locations yourself?  I don't have (yet) a SSD but there is no difference if my catalog folder is on a conventional internal HDD or on a USB2 external drive.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 30, 2021 Jan 30, 2021

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Michel, I just did some testing and my results support your opinion.  I tested with a very fast NVMe SSD, a slower SSD and a very old platter drive.  There was no measurable difference in the time it took to launch the program and open the catalog.  I used the same copied catalog for the test of the NVMe and platter drives.  The third catalog on the slower SSD was a very recent copy.  So, it was essentially the same.

I did not measure the time it took to copy my 12GB catalog folder to the standard drive, but I suspect that it would be considerably longer than to copy to an SSD.  When I have some time, I will try to measure the difference.  Transferring a large catalog can be very time consuming.  I will usually zip the catalog folder because it is infinitely faster to copy a single zip file between drives than to copy the hundreds of thousands of small text files that are included in the catalog folder.  It also seems that unzipping the folder at the other end is faster than a Win Explorer copy/paste procedure. 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 31, 2021 Jan 31, 2021

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@Greg_S. 

 

"Transferring a large catalog can be very time consuming. I will usually zip the catalog folder because it is infinitely faster to copy a single zip file between drives than to copy the hundreds of thousands of small text files that are included in the catalog folder. It also seems that unzipping the folder at the other end is faster than a Win Explorer copy/paste procedure."

Indeed.

I am not too concerned with the speed of copying the catalog folder because I don't use face recognition or auto creations. My catalog folder holds less than one hundred files and I don't necessarily need to copy the thumbnail cache.

If I had like you thousands of small text files, I would try either to 'sync' the catalog folder with an external drive via Microsoft 'Synctoy'* or via a backup/cloning solution like Acronis. My guess is that it would be faster than zipping.

 

*Synctoy is no longer provided in the latest Windows 10 versions, but I have been able to install it on another computer.

 

Edit:

- 81 files in the catalog folder

- 35 seconds with synctoy to sync -autobackup_ to Onedrive

- 16 seconds to save via Acronis.

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New Here ,
Jan 31, 2021 Jan 31, 2021

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Hi again and thanks for testing stuff out.  Let me specify what I am curious about.  I too am not concered how long it takes to transfer the files over, I just remember that when I last used the program, it seemed very slow when scrolling through photos, selecting tags, etc.  I have since upgraded my computer to a very speedy i5-10600 and have the OS and programs on a NvME SSD and all the 20,000 or so photos on a 4 TB 5400 drive.  I am wondering if the library would benefit from having it stored on SSD where I have my programs and OS.  Is that what you are saying won't matter much as far as access speeds?  I do want to try this out again for the facial recognition because that became quite tedious to manually tag all of the photos.  

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 01, 2021 Feb 01, 2021

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Dan,

It's up to you to compare on your own setup.

Copy and paste your catalog folder from your conventional HDD to somewhere on your SSD and test that catalog copy.

Don't forget to set you first scratch disk as the SSD.

I'll leave Greg comment on face recognition (which I don't use).

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 01, 2021 Feb 01, 2021

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As far as face recognition is concerned, I am guessing that you will actually see some improvement in speed if you have the catalog folder on the SSD.  For example, if you have a large number of faces in a stack and add a name, multiple small .json files will added/edited and saved with the person's name.  Now, with your new computer, it may not take very long, but I would say it will be faster simply because of the number of small files that may be saved.  Similarly, if you select a number of stacks of faces each containing a number of media files, and perform a command like Don't Show Again, there will be a number of read/write operations that can take some time.  I would expect having the catalog on the SSD to perform this command faster.  When I was creating a new catalog, I might select more than a hundred stacks, each having several photos, and use the Don't Show Again command.  Even with a fast processor, this can take a minute or two.  So, given the difference in read/write speed between an SSD and a regular hard drive, I suspect that the SSD could be noticeably faster.  There are other catalog file/management operations that should benefit from an SSD.  But I don't have any hard evidence for that. 

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