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LR Classic 10.3 not recognising some of the files in my external hard disk

Community Beginner ,
Jul 05, 2021 Jul 05, 2021

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Hello!  I have found topics similar to this but they do not help with my specific problem so I am posting to see if any of you clever people can help.  Here goes....

I am a relative novice and learning fast but this has me stumped.   

I store all of the original files from my cameras on an external hard drive (Seagate 5 TB) to save space on my Macbook Pro.  I think I have a relatively sensible file organisation system.  The LR catalog resides on the Macbook Pro.  All was going fine until recently -  have a suspicion the problem started when I upgraded to the latest version of LR Classic.

The problem is that most of (but not all) the folders relating to this external drive in the Lightroom Library module are missing.  2 of them are greyed out with a ? icon.  A few of them are there and the files are found when I go into Develop module, however many folders are simply not there and the thumbnails(when I click 'all photographs' in Catalog) have the ! icon on them.  In develop, I get the message "The file could not be found".  

One of the folders had a ? icon - I tried 'find missing folders' - took me to a backup folder on my computer's hard drive. When I chose that it disappeared from the LR folder list, orig files still 'missing'.  

I have not renamed or moved any of the files on the external drive. They are all still there and I can open the files with other programmes.  

 

I did recently move a lot of the files on my Macbook Pro to iCloud and deleted a lot of stuff but I did not move the LR catalogue which is still there on my computer's hard disc.   I can't believe that would have anything to do with the problem as a selection of the folders is still there and operable.  

 

I hope someone can shed some light on this - here are a couple of screenshots that illustrate the issue.  

This is a screenshot of my external hard drive (called "My Photos") content in Finder: 

Leame_0-1625482962360.png

This is the Lightroom folder window in Library mode: The list of folders under '"MyPhotos" is quite short and for example, does not include the 2020 folder or the main 2021 folder, only a few subfolders from the main 2021 folder.  

Leame_1-1625483069484.png

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 05, 2021 Jul 05, 2021

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I did recently move a lot of the files on my Macbook Pro to iCloud and deleted a lot of stuff but I did not move the LR catalogue which is still there on my computer's hard disc. I can't believe that would have anything to do with the problem as a selection of the folders is still there and operable.

 

This is exactly the problem. When you moved the folders Lightroom no longer knows where they are. Click on a Question Mark and Lightroom will show the path indicating where it thinks the folder should be. Click on the button that says Do you want to locate the folder and browse to the new location to reestablish the connection to the folder.

 

https://helpx.adobe.com/lightroom-classic/how-to/lightroom-move-folder-files.html

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 06, 2021 Jul 06, 2021

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Lightroom will not rename your folders - this is a manual process. Please reread my first response to "find missing folder" and show Lightroom where you've moved it to. Also be aware that using iCloud is not the same as using Creative Cloud storage which comes with your plan. Both cloud locations will give you the ability to increase your storage capacity so you may want to see which one you have more of.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 06, 2021 Jul 06, 2021

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Hi cmgap, thank you for your interest and input!    I think I may have misled you - when I cleaned up my computer I did not move any photo files to iCloud - I only mentioned that to clarify that the LR catalogue files are still on my computer.    My photo files (Nikon RAW files) have always been put straight on to my external hard drive from the camera card, and I haven't moved or renamed them.  I understand the concept of finding missing files for folders with a question mark, but my main problem is the folders that do not show up in LR at all.  

 

I am wondering if moving my LR catalogue files onto the external drive would be of any use - have seen that discussed in another thread.  

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 06, 2021 Jul 06, 2021

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There is a missing folder that has been renamed most likely you did this at the finder level and not in Lightroom which is why it is missing and showing a ?. Take a look at the 'Manning and M-N Best' with 17 images in the Lightroom Folder Panel screen shot. Now look at the same folder at the finder level with the name 'Manning and Nixon Skinner'. What are the contents of these two folders - did you rename the finder level folder?

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 07, 2021 Jul 07, 2021

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HI again.  No, Those folders are not the issue - the 'best' folder with 17 images was one I created on my external drive to export edited photos into, it does not contain original Nikon raw files, and I have not renamed folders  in finder.  I reiterate  it is the folders that don't even show up  in the Lightroom Folder panel that are the issue.  

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 07, 2021 Jul 07, 2021

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If the folders are not in Lightroom and you want them to be in Lightroom is there a reason you haven't imported them? Is there an error message that happens when you try to import them? If you tap import and navigate to these folders and intiate the import process and the images turn gray that means they are already in your catalog. If you have the option to Add in the import process it will be quicker to readd them than to answer why they aren't there.

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LEGEND ,
Jul 07, 2021 Jul 07, 2021

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You have accidentally imported the phots into the "wrong" folder. So LightrooM Classic only knows about the photos in the "wrong" folder, while you are looking in a different folder. Lightroom Classic is not a file browser like Windows Explorer or Mac Finder, it does not "know" about what folder you think the photos are in, and does not show folders just because they exist in your operating system.

 

You need to go into the Lightroom Classic Library Module, and find one of these photos following all four of these steps:

 

1. In the Lightroom Classic Library Module, on the left, under Catalog, click on All Photographs
2. Turn off all filters (Ctrl-L once or twice)
3. Turn off all stacking (Photo->Stacking->Expand All Stacks)
4. Search for at least one of these photos by file name using the Lightroom Classic Filter Bar

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LEGEND ,
Jul 05, 2021 Jul 05, 2021

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 05, 2021 Jul 05, 2021

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My belief is-

The 'Missing' Folder (with the ? called "Manning and N-S best") is where Lightroom-Classic believes the photos to exist.

2021-07-06 05_45_37-LR Classic 10.3 not recognising some of the files ... - Adobe Support Community .jpg

But, I might suggest, they are in a Folder that is named differently "Manning and Nixon Skinner"-

2021-07-06 05_45_50-LR Classic 10.3 not recognising some of the files ... - Adobe Support Community .jpg

Was the folder renamed using Mac Finder?

See Part 2 in the "Find Folder" link given by @GoldingD above, and relink the 'missing' folder.

 

The Method explained simply is-

1) [Right-Click] on the "Manning and N-S best" in Lr-Classic folders panel

2) Choose [Find Missing Folder...]

3) Search and select the "Manning and Nixon Skinner" folder in the Finder window that opens

4) Click on [Select Folder]

 

 

Regards. My System: Lr-Classic 10.4, Photoshop 22.5, Lightroom 4.4, Windows-10 Nikon DSLR.

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