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How to manage that two PC's share the same catalog?

Explorer ,
Jan 04, 2018

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Photoshop elements Organiser 15

Windows 10

I have Photoshop elements installed on two different PC's

When I start the organiser on PC2 it is obviously not the same as on PC1 (For instance I have to re-tag the same persons names)

How can I manage that my two PC's share the same catalog

I tried to instal my catalogs on the cloud (OneDrive) but apparently they are different

How to arrange that?

Thank you for the help.

daniel

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How to manage that two PC's share the same catalog?

Explorer ,
Jan 04, 2018

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Photoshop elements Organiser 15

Windows 10

I have Photoshop elements installed on two different PC's

When I start the organiser on PC2 it is obviously not the same as on PC1 (For instance I have to re-tag the same persons names)

How can I manage that my two PC's share the same catalog

I tried to instal my catalogs on the cloud (OneDrive) but apparently they are different

How to arrange that?

Thank you for the help.

daniel

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Jan 04, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 04, 2018

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danielschellmus  wrote

Photoshop elements Organiser 15

Windows 10

I have Photoshop elements installed on two different PC's

When I start the organiser on PC2 it is obviously not the same as on PC1 (For instance I have to re-tag the same persons names)

How can I manage that my two PC's share the same catalog

I tried to instal my catalogs on the cloud (OneDrive) but apparently they are different

How to arrange that?

Thank you for the help.

daniel

The only way to share between two computers is to store both your catalog folder and your image files folder tree on an external drive that you plug in alternatively to each computer.

The best way is to create a full backup of your catalog (from the catalog manager), preferably on an external drive. Then you plug in another external drive as the destination drive, and restore on that drive on a new master folder under the root folder. Be sure to set the external drive with the same drive letter in Windows. That could work with a single drive for the backup and the restore, but it's not ideal.

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Jan 04, 2018 1
Explorer ,
Jan 07, 2018

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Hello

I did a full back up of the catalog on External Hard Disk 1 : HD1

However I don't understand why you propose to use two HD-s so why do you prpose to restore on HD 2

I could use HD1 on the other PC...

Thanks for the help

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Jan 07, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 08, 2018

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danielschellmus  wrote

Hello

I did a full back up of the catalog on External Hard Disk 1 : HD1

However I don't understand why you propose to use two HD-s so why do you prpose to restore on HD 2

I could use HD1 on the other PC...

Thanks for the help

Beware that a backup folder from the organizer is not a simple copy of your photo files and your catalog, it is a folder that can only be used by the 'Restore' function of the organizer.

So, typically, you have an external drive to share your library and catalog, plus another one as a backup.

You could create your backup folder in an external drive and restore to a new master folder in the same drive, but that would be much slower. There are also risks of confusion between the backup folder, the newly created catalog folder and the photo library master folder.

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Jan 08, 2018 1
Explorer ,
Jan 08, 2018

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Hello

Things are getting much clearer now.

In short:

HD1: contains all my photos, I performed the Backup Catalog on a folder in HD1.

HD2: is empty and waits for the Restore Catalog, as you advised

However I have again two questions

1- You mentioned that both HD's should have the same letter . Why is that important? My HD1 on which I created the catalog BU and on which I have my photos, has the letter I:   namely My Passport_20170(I:) .  I don't know why... because there is only C and I

My HD 2 on which I shall perform the Restore , has the letter D:, which is what one should expect. Namely My Passport(D:)

2- After the Restore Catalog operation, Which HD shall I use on te other computer HD1 or HD2. If I understand well HD1 and then HD2 will be a simple safety BU.

Thanks for the precious help

Daniel

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Jan 08, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 08, 2018

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Sorry, I have not been clear.

When you use two external drives at the same time, obviously they must have two different drive letters. That is the situation when you restore from the backup drive to the autonomous destination one.

Your catalog holds the identification of the drive for each file. When you plug in the drive alternatively on both computers, you read the same location information from the catalog database. For instance, if it works with the letter 😧 in one computer and you plug in the external drive into the second computer, the information will be false is the drive is recognized as I: and the files may be shown as 'missing' or 'disconnected'.

In other words, to plug in alternatively the external drive in two different computers, the drive letter should be the same with both computers.

Fortunately, you can assign a new drive letter in Windows. Since Windows tends to assign different letters based on the devices already plugged in, it is recommended to assign letters farther in the alphabet, for instance the letter I: rather than the letter 😧

If you don't know how to change the drive letter, please state your Windows version.

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Jan 08, 2018 1
Explorer ,
Jan 08, 2018

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Hello,

Things are getting more and more clear!

However I have still one question:

At the present moment I did a "Backup Catalog" on HD1 which contains also all my pictures

When I shall do the "Restore Catalog" on HD2 , I guess the catalog AND the pictures will come from source HD1 and will be copied on HD2.

At the end what will be the procedure on PC2?

- I guess, both PC1 AND PC2 should use one HD only

- Shall I work from HD1 or HD2?

Thank you for the reply

Daniel

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Jan 08, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 08, 2018

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danielschellmus  wrote

Hello,

Things are getting more and more clear!

However I have still one question:

At the present moment I did a "Backup Catalog" on HD1 which contains also all my pictures

When I shall do the "Restore Catalog" on HD2 , I guess the catalog AND the pictures will come from source HD1 and will be copied on HD2.

Exactly.

At the end what will be the procedure on PC2?

When the restored has beed performed, the drive with the backup folder is no longer needed for the process (still useful as a backup anyway). By the way, the restore command can be issued from one computer or the other.

Now, you have to tell each of your computers where the catalog is situated.

You plug in the first one and you have two ways:

- you use the menu File >> Manage catalogs, 'Open' button, and you have to click on the 'custom' radio button and to browse to the catalog on the external drive. The catalog is recognized and should be shown next time in the 'custom' location without browsing.

- it may be simpler, with the organizer closed, to double click on the 'catalog.pse16db' file in the catalog folder; that opens the organizer directly with the restored catalog. That custom location is saved as in the above process.

Same process to have the second computer recognize the catalog on the hard drive.

The big advantage is that any task you have performed with one computer is immediately available when you plug the external drive to the other computer.

The possible slight disadvantage may be that external drives may be a little slower.

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Jan 08, 2018 1
Explorer ,
Jan 08, 2018

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Hello

I am now almost ready to proceed (I have 25k pics)

You mentioned that files , media and catalog should best be on a master folder under the root folder.

On HD1 my files are in a sub-sub-folder

How can I move them to a master folder directly under the root folder.

I guess I cannot move the whole just like that by copying files from the sub-sub folder of HD1 to the root folder of HD1

Can I use the BU Catalog for that inside HD1

or Should I first restore catalog from HD1 to HD2 and then restore catalog from HD2 to the root folder of HD1

Thanks again

Daniel

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Jan 08, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 09, 2018

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danielschellmus  wrote

Hello

I am now almost ready to proceed (I have 25k pics)

You mentioned that files , media and catalog should best be on a master folder under the root folder.

On HD1 my files are in a sub-sub-folder

Daniel

On your HD1 with the backup folder, the only important thing is that the backup is NOT in the root folder; it can be on any other folder or subfolder location. It's just easier and more obvious if that folder is just under the root. So, you have nothing special to do.

When you start the restore process from HD1 to HD2, you are prompted to specify the location of the backup folder and the destination folder in the HD2.

The destination folder in HD2 should not be the root folder, so it's recommended to create a new empty folder just under the root (such as 'Myphotos') so that you can choose it when you start the restore process.

In other words, no need to move anything, just create the empty destination folder before starting the restore process. If you don't create it before, you have to specify and create the empty folder during the process, but many users do skip that creation. That results in a restore in the root folder wich is a source of many problems.

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Jan 09, 2018 1
Explorer ,
Jan 09, 2018

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Hello Michel,

As you mention that it is better to have the catalog in a direct subfolder of the root, shall I start by moving the catalog of HD1 to a daughter subfolder of the root HD1. it is presently in a grand-grand-daughter folder and might possibly cause problems later (?)

And if I want to proceed to this operation on HD1, can I do it diectly IN HD1 without passing by a transition HD. I guess I have then to create a new Backup Catalog in a direct daughter Subfolder of the root. In other words I cannot move the catalog by copy and paste I guess.

Another correlated question: when you move your catalog do you have also to move the media? And vice-versa, when you move the media, do you have to re-create the catalog by backup-restore afterwards.

Does the  catalog need to be in the same folder as the media?

I am sorry to ask you so manty questions but the Help page about folders 'managing catalogs...'

in https://helpx.adobe.com/elements-organizer/user-guide.html

Elements Organizer Help | Elements Organizer User Guide

doesn't say  really much!

Many thanks again

Daniel

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Jan 09, 2018 0
Explorer ,
Jan 11, 2018

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Hello,

I have now done all the procedure which you described

Made a backup catalog on HD1

restore catalog on HD2

When I plug in HD2 in PC1 / Manage Catalog : Browse /  OK

When I plug HD2 in PC2 / Manage Catalog / Browse

I have a message : Could not open the catalog. Internal programming error.

I tried several times but it's always the same error.

Thank you for the help

Best
Daniel

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Jan 11, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 11, 2018

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danielschellmus  wrote

Hello,

I have now done all the procedure which you described

Made a backup catalog on HD1

restore catalog on HD2

When I plug in HD2 in PC1 / Manage Catalog : Browse /  OK

That means that the backup and the restore have been successful.

- your backup is ok

- the restore photo library AND the catalog are OK on the external drive. You can check that the catalog you are using is the one you are using (not the original) from the menu Help >> system Info, you can see the location of the catalog. Also, in the information panel on the right, the location of each photo file is on the external drive.

When I plug HD2 in PC2 / Manage Catalog / Browse

I have a message : Could not open the catalog. Internal programming error.

If you can open the organizer with the second computer, the message is obviously linked to the identification of the restored catalog folder. Since it' the same procedure  you successfully made with the other computer, it's not an error on your part.

The possible source of error might be the drive identification of the external drive seen by the two computers.

Say the external drive is recognized as E: in computer one, and as I: in computer two. The drive identification would be false in the second computer (see previous discussion). That's what you have to check first.

If the drive letter is different, you only have to use the Windows options to change the drive letter.

Several tutorials on how to change drive letter on your Windows 10:

Windows 10 change letter drive - Yahoo Search Results

If the letters are the same, you might try to start the organizer on the second drive by double clicking on the 'catalog.pse15db' file in the restored catalog folder.

General troubleshooting procedure:

Elements Organizer 2018 crashes on launch or while importing a catalog

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Jan 11, 2018 0
Explorer ,
Jan 12, 2018

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Hello,

I checked as you said, : On both PCs the HD is identified as J: so same letter

PC1

I noticed that in fact the organiser opens My Catalog in C/: and not on the external drive

Help / System Info

The catalog is on C (that was my previous catalog)

So I try to open it in J:

Custom / Browse / looking on J:

message" the catalog could not be opened. Intenal program error'

So the organiser cannot open the catalog on J

The  same thing happens when I plug in the HD on PC2

Organiser opens a catalog on C: and when I ask to open the catalog on J: Error message

I localised 'catalog.pse15db' on J: . When I double-click on 'catalog.pse15db'  I revceive again the error message ' The catalog could not be opened. An internal programming error occured'

I guess I shall probably to go again to the whole process, but how...

Thank you

Daniel

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Jan 12, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 12, 2018

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That means that the process: backup plus restore gives a corrupt catalog.

My guess is that the backup part has worked, otherwise (from my experience) you could not have performed the restore.

On the other hand, the message is typical of a corrupt catalog.

Try to start the organizer from the second computer while keeping the shift key pressed until you get a dialog offering the option to 'repair' the catalog. If the organizer tries to repair the default new empty catalog that won't work, but if it tries to repair the new corrupt one, there is a chance.

If nothing works, I would not start the whole process again, only the restore part. However, tell me what happens with the above trial. Before trying to restore again, I can provide a faster troubleshooting test.

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Jan 12, 2018 0
Explorer ,
Jan 13, 2018

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hello

I tried what you proposed on PC2

"

"Try to start the organizer from the second computer while keeping the shift key pressed until you get a dialog offering the option to 'repair' the catalog. If the organizer tries to repair the default new empty catalog that won't work, but if it tries to repair the new corrupt one, there is a chance."

I kept the shift key pressed during the whole process

But the program didn't propose a repair procedure.

It opened again the old catalog on C:, then I browed on J: where I had the error message.

Unless you propose simpler alternative, I think I should proceed from scratch. Restart from Zero. However I don't know how to do that. Shall I manually delete all catalogs??? (If I can)

best

Daniel

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Jan 13, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 13, 2018

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Unless you propose simpler alternative, I think I should proceed from scratch. Restart from Zero. However I don't know how to do that. Shall I manually delete all catalogs??? (If I can)

You can delete the catalog folder on the J: drive from your Windows explorer.

(Note: to delete it from the organizer, you would have to be in another catalog, for instance a new empty one. Then the catalog manager shows a 'remove' button to do that).

You might try the restore process only.

A relatively fast troubleshooting step before starting from scratch would be to create a new folder on J: 'MyCatalogLight' or similar. You only copy the 'catalog.pse15db' file from the corrupt catalog folder on J: into that folder.

Double click on this file; this should open the organizer with a 'minimal' catalog keeping your tags, captions, ratings, notes, version sets, stacks and albums. You would lose face recognition among others. The missing components will be re-created, like thumbnails.

If that works, the catalog corruption is not related to that main catalog database.

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Jan 13, 2018 0
Explorer ,
Jan 13, 2018

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Hello

No it did not work

When I double click on the copied catalog.pse15db

I receive the same error message. 'Could not open. Internal program error'

Thanks for the help

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Jan 13, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 13, 2018

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danielschellmus  wrote

No it did not work

When I double click on the copied catalog.pse15db

I receive the same error message. 'Could not open. Internal program error'

Then the problem seems to lie in the restored 'catalog.pse15db' database.

When in your original catalog, did you try a 'repair' option, and 'repair anyway' even if no error have been found?

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Jan 13, 2018 0
Explorer ,
Jan 15, 2018

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Hello Michel

I think that the best is to restart the whole process

But I do not understand well a point: When Organiser starts from scratch, does he creates his first catalog on C: That means local?

How can I start from scratch? Can I create immediately the new catalog on HD1?

Otherwise

Shall I first delete all catalogs on C: of PC1

and all catalogs on I: HD1 and HD2

Then what? how and where do I create the first new catalog

Then do a BU on HD1

A restore on HD2

And then The catalog on HD2 should be the one I shall use between both computers

Thank you for the help

Daniel

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Jan 15, 2018 0
Explorer ,
Jan 22, 2018

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hello Miche

I restart from scratch

Did a full back up on HD2

I am doing a restore to HD1

A further question:

When I restore , is it useful to restore with the option 'restore Original Folder structure'

Is it interesting to do it?I tried a bit both possibilities and I don't see realy any advantages to either solution.

- with the option 'restore Original Folder structure'

The organiser restores all tthe original folders?

- just restore normal

The organiser restores with its own way, reorganising the folders in a strrange way that I don't really grab.

In both cases, do you lose some photos or forders in doubjle? Do you lose some infos??

Thank you

Daniel

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Jan 22, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 22, 2018

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Back up or restore catalogs in Elements Organizer 2018

You may prefer not to keep the original folder structure when the result is a folder tree with many subfolders without any image. For instance, the 'My Pictures' folders appears under 'User', 'your user name' steps which are useless. The restored structure is simplified. If you don't like it, simply ignore and tick the option to restore the original structure with its unneeded empty subfolders.

Anyway, all your files are there and no folder merging takes place.

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Jan 22, 2018 0
Explorer ,
Jan 23, 2018

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Hello Michel,

I did the Restore  without the 'keep the original folder ' as you said

The Restore was succesful (took 5 hours) on HD1. I: in a folder under the root Clic_Photoshop

apparently all my folders are there.

Now I am ready.

I shall open PC1 , Manage catalog ' choose the 'My catalog" on I: Clic_Photoshop

Then Open PC2, see that the HD has also the letter i:

then on PC2 manage catalog and choose the same

I hope it will work this time...

Thank you for confirming the procedure

Daniel

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Jan 23, 2018 0
Explorer ,
Jan 30, 2018

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Hello Michel,

After many many hours of trying, and following your precious advice,  I have to admit that it will not work on two PCs

I suspected that it was because I was backuping and restoring with HD's SO I tried with two SSD's

My Folder is abour 400G

I have 80k photos and 1500 folders

Everything went ok on PC1

Then I plugged my SSD on PC2, changed the letter to J: as in PC1

Everything worked fine on PC2

I made a few modifs.

Went back to PC1

Plugged my SSD, and there ... 'The catalog could not be opened. An Internal error occured'

So for me the case is there: It is not possible to use a same catalog on two PC's

Have you referred to Adobe about this?

Best
Daniel

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Jan 30, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 30, 2018

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Went back to PC1

Plugged my SSD, and there ... 'The catalog could not be opened. An Internal error occured'

No idea of what happened there. By the way, I don't have any SSD, so I can't test on my side.

Have you referred to Adobe about this?

What should I say them? My guess is that members of the Elements team are monitoring the forum, but I very much doubt that any action will be taken until the problem is clearly identified and reproducible.

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Jan 30, 2018 0
Explorer ,
Jan 30, 2018

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Hello

My files are big I guess (80k pics, 1500 folders) As the backup and the restore each take about 5 hours on HDs, I thought SSDs would be faster, but they didn't really.

And also I don't think that SSD or HD's are the matter.

For me it didn't work using a HD, and it didn't either with a SSD.

Actually, when I create the catalog by BackUp-Restore on the HD on the PC1, it works on PC1. SO PC1 can work with the catalog on an external HD.

When I plug in this same HD on PC2, it works also,  (provided that you change the letter and keep the same as on PC1). I find all my medias and tags created on PC1.

I can modify, add new pics on PC2, it all works.

But when I plug then the HD on PC2 : Error! and he can't open the catalog anymore...

My question now is:

Are you able to use one HD only for two PCs, going from one to another?

Are there any members of this forum who could reproduce that?

I have followed exactly your instructions and I could'nt succeed...

I really don't know what to do now to be honnest???

Thank you for the help.

Daniel

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Jan 30, 2018 0
Explorer ,
Feb 06, 2018

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Hi Michel

It's working

I could implement the process: I work now with one catalog -  on a 500Gb SSD - and I use it on two PC's

The error I made was the following: I was unplugging my SSD (or HD) too fast, before the warning of Windows 'Safe to unplug this media'

As my catalog is big (400G) it's making the update process a bit slow, so I have to wait sometime a few minutes before Windows allow me to unplug. It is very important to wait, otherwise you will receive an error message from Photoshop.

Thanks for the help

Daniel

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Feb 06, 2018 1
New Here ,
Sep 08, 2020

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I am trying to do the same thing. I have done backup from desktop to hard drive, restored to laptop from hard drive. Everything works fine. Now I am back on the desktop and I browse the hard drive for catalog and I find it. I use Manage Catalog and use Custom and click on catalog on hard drive. The only options now available to me are New or Convert and I am not sure what they do.

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Sep 08, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 09, 2020

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This is a Test reply that is not nested.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
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To Sandy0001:

"I am trying to do the same thing. I have done backup from desktop to hard drive, restored to laptop from hard drive. Everything works fine. Now I am back on the desktop and I browse the hard drive for catalog and I find it. I use Manage Catalog and use Custom and click on catalog on hard drive. The only options now available to me are New or Convert and I am not sure what they do."

The other way to assign the new catalog as the current one for the organizer is:

- With the organizer closed, use the Windows explorer to find the restored catalog folder

- double click on the 'catalog.pseXXdb' which will open the organizer with the restored catalog

- next time you open the organizer, it will remember that choice and show the catalog in the 'custom' section of the catalog manager.

 

Note:

There is a bug in this forum which prevents going to the last post of the discussion and which made my two previous attemps to answer to be ignored. To continue the discussion, only click on the blue 'Answer' button under the first post of the discussion.

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Sep 09, 2020 0
New Here ,
Sep 29, 2020

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Thanks for the great questions and answers.  I have similar goal with more questions.  I want to use PS on two computers and I want each computer to have the catalog and photo files in case something happens to one of the computers.  With the description of backup and restore and using external drive B for the catalog is the catalog and photo files stored on both computers AND the external drive?  If I delete files from Computer A and want them deleted from Computer B will the external drive delete them from both the catalog and from the computer itself?  Thanks, mb

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Sep 29, 2020 0
New Here ,
Sep 29, 2020

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My question above also makes me wonder if I should have different names for three catalogs to make it easy to know which is which?  

Mark

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Sep 29, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 02, 2020

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A catalog name should always make clear for which computer it has been created.

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Oct 02, 2020 0