I am about to acquire a new computer that has both SDD and HDD storage. I currently have PSE 15 on a machine with only a HDD, and that's where I created my Organizer catalog. I understand that most folks recommend storing the photos on the HDD even if the SDD has room. I plan to use Laplink PC Mover to transfer a lot of the stuff to the new computer (both W10/64), but don't know whether to force it to move the program to the HDD as well as the photos, to download a new version of the program and then transfer not only the photos but the catalog files somewhere, or something else. Anyone know what to do to minimize problems (e.g., the Organizer catalog thinking the photos are somewhere other than where I moved them).
You may run into issues with Photoshop Elements if you don't backup the catalog, do a proper installation of Photoshop Elements, and then restore the catalog from the backup. Transfering Adobe programs rather than doing a proper install rarely works well.
I've moved this from the Photoshop to the Photoshop Elements forum so that proper help can be offered.
Thank. I didn't realize there were different forums (fora?).
Are you moving the old HDD to the new machine? I assume that it was your only drive on the old machine. If not, give us the details of the old and new drives.
If you are in fact going from a C: sytem drive (HDD) containing all of your photos, to a new computer with an SSD sytem drive C: and a second new HDD, then I would recommend doing as Bob suggests, which is to backup your catalog, using Elements, on your old machine. Then, using your program discs or download file, to install Elements on your new SSD. Then restore the backup to your new computer and use a custom location to restore your files to your new HDD.
The catalog folder will also be restored to your HDD, but you can move the folder (using Windows Explorer) to the SSD. It doesn't take up much room and may result in better performance for the catalog.
You may also want to take a look at this recent thread for other ideas.
FYI, I have a Win10/64 PC with both an SSD (C:) & an HDD (D:). I have PSE 2020 installed in the default location (C:\Program Files\Adobe\) and my Organizer catalogs are located in the default location (C:\ProgramData\Adobe\Elements Organizer\Catalogs\). All of my photo files are located in D:\Pictures\. Everything runs very smoothly and QUICKLY!
Follow Peru Bob's advice about installing, backup, and restore. And, Greg_S is correct, the catalog files don't take much space.
Thanks to everyone for the quick and useful replies. The one thing I still don't understand is whether the catalog I created when the program and pics were on the same drive will still work OKwhen I transfer it over to an environment in which the pics are on a different drive. If not, is there an easy fix? Will "reconnect" work for all the files if I send Organizer to the right location for the first file? I have about 43,000 photos, most of them cataloged.
If you use the Backup/Restore feature, it doesn't matter where you put them. The Organizer will know where they are. You can also move just the catalog folder once it has been restored and it will still find the photos in your catalog.
The reconnect tool is sometimes problematic and can take a long time. That's why we recommend the Backup/Restore method.
Well, that all seemed reasonable at least until I realized that the backup included all the media as well as the catalog info itself. When I tried to back up the catalog, I saw that the backup file would be about 53 gig. I decided not to try to put it on DVDs (about 11 of them) and tried my external hard drive (Western Digital My Book), which I thought was working fine and had enough space.
Got to the point of starting the full backup, but after a few minutes, got an error about writing the file. Tried a second time with the same result. I suspect this had to do with the enormity of the file, but it might be some disk incompatibility. Am I any more likely to be successful with the multiple DVD option? Is there another fix?
How about doing the backup to the old HDD? You didn't tell us whether you intend to move it to the new machine. But even if you don't, there are some cheap hard drive docking stations or cables which allow you to use it as an external drive.
Greg, that worked, although I was expecting one humongous file and instead got almost 61,000 files, which meant saving it to the desktop was a big mistake. But I eventually got them in a folder. For others who may wonder, in addition to catalog.buc and backup.tly, there are two .cache files, two .dat files, and the rest are either copies of the cataloged photos (with hexadecimal names) or .json files, the exact purpose of which I am unsure.
While contemplating all this, I accidentally ran across a post that explains why backup to my external hard disk didn't work. I tried saving the file in the root of the external drive, and there is a known bug that won't allow that; you have to create a folder on the drive and save the backup there. Learning that, I copied the FOLDER on my old computer's HDD to the external drive, and that worked.
ONE MORE QUESTION: When I restore this backup to the new computer, I want the photo files to be on the HDD, not the SDD. Let's say the HDD is designated 😧 Then presumably that is what I should pick when the restore asks me for the destination location. I also guess that the photos will wind up in a folder there named Pictures, with all the original subfolder trees. Where will the catalog wind up if the PSE15 program is on the SDD? And will all that work smoothly?
Again, thanks to everyone for helping out.
Copy link to clipboard
You can restore the backup of the catalog to what will be your D drive. You can also choose an option to restore the original folder structure. See this article for further details. However, as I said earlier, I believe the catalog folder will also be placed on your D drive. (I'm not sure about this as I haven't restored a backup in a long time.) If this is the case, you can move the catalog folder itself to the SSD drive, either in the default location, or you can use a custom location. The root of the C: drive will work for placing the catalog folder.
If the restored catalog does not end up on the D drive, then I assume it will be placed in the default location on the SSD drive.
I just did a quick test of Backup/Restore and the catalog folder is indeed restored to the same location as the media tree.