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Can I trash older catalogues/Backups?

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Jan 13, 2016
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I have a lot of older catalogues on my mac and external disks (drobo). I wonder if I can toss those or do I need to open all the catalogues to first make them empty in LR... How does LR know that it can trash the catalogue but not the photographs who are all stored on drobo?
 
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Catalog Backup files are copies of the master catalog file. Catalog files do not contain image files only a pointer (path) to the original image file on some disk The purpose of the catalog backup file is to recover your catalog when the master catalog file gets corrupted or when the disk that it stored on fails.( This is why the backup copy should be stored on a separate volume.) Lightroom does not "trash" the catalog backup file. There is no mechanism in LR to do housekeeping tasks like delete a backup copy of the master catalog file. This is a manual process and you need to do your own housekeeping using finder.

Some people out of ignorance open a backup catalog and start importing new images. At that point the backup catalog file becomes the new master. If you have been using LR prior to LR6, then this was a possibility. You need to make sure that there are no original image files hidden inside the dated backup folders containing the backup catalog file.

You can toss any older backup catalogs that you won't need to recover from a corrupt catalog file or some stupid user mistake. I have gone back as far as 6 months to find correct information to correct some stupid user mistake.
 
Joined
Jan 13, 2016
Messages
47
Location
Las Cruces, NM
Lightroom Experience
Advanced
Lightroom Version
Catalog Backup files are copies of the master catalog file. Catalog files do not contain image files only a pointer (path) to the original image file on some disk The purpose of the catalog backup file is to recover your catalog when the master catalog file gets corrupted or when the disk that it stored on fails.( This is why the backup copy should be stored on a separate volume.) Lightroom does not "trash" the catalog backup file. There is no mechanism in LR to do housekeeping tasks like delete a backup copy of the master catalog file. This is a manual process and you need to do your own housekeeping using finder.

Some people out of ignorance open a backup catalog and start importing new images. At that point the backup catalog file becomes the new master. If you have been using LR prior to LR6, then this was a possibility. You need to make sure that there are no original image files hidden inside the dated backup folders containing the backup catalog file.

You can toss any older backup catalogs that you won't need to recover from a corrupt catalog file or some stupid user mistake. I have gone back as far as 6 months to find correct information to correct some stupid user mistake.
 
Joined
Jan 13, 2016
Messages
47
Location
Las Cruces, NM
Lightroom Experience
Advanced
Lightroom Version
Thank you so much Cletus. Do I understand you correctly that the most current LR catalogue is the one you imported to the last? And that one will have the correct links to the actual files? If the backups are on an external disk I can chuck those because they have no real link anymore with the master images? You would think that after working with LR since beta 1 I would know these things... ;o))
 
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