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Dragging parent folder to another drive

mikecox

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Last year I experienced a disaster when I tried to drag a large parent folder to another drive and it took months to sort it out.

This year I want to move another parent folder, with lots of child folders to another drive and I'm rather nervous about trying it again. I may have done something wrong last year when disaster struck but I want to make sure what I am about to do will not turn into another disaster.

drag.jpg
 
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For this, do not use Lightroom. Instead, simply COPY the parent folder using File Explorer to your preferred destination. When that is complete, open Lightroom and right-click on that 2017 parent folder and select "Update Folder Location". In the resulting file browser, navigate to and select the copy of it on the new drive. Lightroom will update its pointers for the 2017 folder and all sub-folders and their contents (and will forget all about the folder's current location). When you are happy that everything is fine, at your leisure you can delete that 2017 folder from the original location using File Explorer.
 
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You might also consider using a copy utility that will verify each each file as it is copied for extra protection. I use ChronoSync on my Mac. I know there are similar apps on Windows.

-louie
I use Teracopy, which runs on Windows, for any large scale moves. You can set it to do a read/verify pass after writing.

Ideally you want to use lightroom to do the move itself. not sure what disaster you experienced, but generally it works fine. However for very large copies I tend to side with Jim, and would do it outside and as Louie recommends do it with a safer program than Explorer.
 

Jimmsp

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..... not sure what disaster you experienced, but generally it works fine. .....
I for one tried this with a few year's worth of photos (30-40 thousand as I recall, many many GB) - and experienced close to disaster. Lightroom only moved some of the folders, some of the subfolders, and not all the photos in each. My solution was straightforward - I reverted to a backup copy of the photos (always backup before major file moves) and redid the move with Windows file explorer.

I will use LR to move smaller groups of photos.
 

Roelof Moorlag

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You might also consider using a copy utility that will verify each each file as it is copied for extra protection. I use ChronoSync on my Mac. I know there are similar apps on Windows.
I'm using Sync Back on Windows because of the file validation option
 
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Ideally you want to use lightroom to do the move itself. not sure what disaster you experienced, but generally it works fine.
A long time ago, and largely because at that time our advice was always "do it in Lightroom", we did some testing here on the forum into what might happen if there was a major issue (system crash, hard drive crash) during a move operation, especially when a folder hierarchy of folders and sub-folders is involved (as typically is the case with the dated folder system). The problem is that the "move" is of course in reality a copy then delete, but that seemed to happen at the sub-folder level, i.e. the contents of the sub-folder all have to be copied before the path of the sub-folder is updated. So after a crash it was not untypical to find the year folder existed in Lightroom on both drives, some of the sub-folders would be under one year folder, some under the other, and files from one sub-folder would be on both drives even though Lightroom still thinks they're only in one.

Generally it was easy enough to straighten things out once recovery had been done, but you'd need to be pretty confident using Lightroom's file/folder management (and system file management) to do that, and sadly that doesn't apply to everyone....in the early days we'd have recovery threads lasting weeks as we shared screenshots and instructions to users not always that computer confident. So gradually we started changing the advice when moving files from one drive to another, though tend to leave the old advice in place when moving intra-volume, as that typically is a quick pointer update.
 
Last edited:

mikecox

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I xperienced close to disaster. Lightroom only moved some of the folders, some of the subfolders, and not all the photos in each. My solution was straightforward - I reverted to a backup copy of the photos (always backup before major file moves) and redid the move with Windows file explorer.

I will use LR to move smaller groups of photos.
Yes, that's exactly what happened to me!
 

mikecox

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I'm using Sync Back on Windows because of the file validation option
I'm using explorer2 as my default file manager, which I think will have no problem with this large file move.
 

mikecox

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For this, do not use Lightroom. Instead, simply COPY the parent folder using File Explorer to your preferred destination. When that is complete, open Lightroom and right-click on that 2017 parent folder and select "Update Folder Location". In the resulting file browser, navigate to and select the copy of it on the new drive. Lightroom will update its pointers for the 2017 folder and all sub-folders and their contents (and will forget all about the folder's current location). When you are happy that everything is fine, at your leisure you can delete that 2017 folder from the original location using File Explorer.
Thanks Jim,

That was the option I was going to go with, but I thought I'd ask about doing it inside Lr first, since, as mentioned in the thread, we are generally advised to "do in Lr". But your methed seems much safer. Of course, I could have tried doing it "inside Lr" then opened my backup copy if it failed. Not sure why I didn't do that the last time /-:
 

Roelof Moorlag

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One thing that not to seem mentioned yet is the difference between moving files on the same hard drive and from one hard drive to another.

Moving files on the same hard drive is not realy that. Only the table of content is updatet and this is quite save to do within Lightroom.
Moving files between hard drives is what Jim described, realy a copy first and than delete afterwards. The method he described is the most safe one.
 

mikecox

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Moving files on the same hard drive is not realy that. Only the table of content is updatet and this is quite save to do within Lightroom.
Moving files between hard drives is what Jim described, realy a copy first and than delete afterwards. The method he described is the most safe one.
Thanks, this is what I'm doing, moving from my computers SSD to an external SSD
 
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