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Export/edit/reimport folder as catalog not reimporting correctly (as expected)

garett_wood

New Member
Joined
Sep 6, 2019
Messages
9
Lightroom Version
8.4
Operating System
Windows 10
So I now have a desktop and laptop to work with. I use my laptop when I'm on the road working... I needed to take some of my photos with me from my desktop to work on with a client - this is what I did..

1. I exported the folder I needed as a catalog to a hard drive, and imported as a catalog to my laptop. (I have one main catalog I keep all my photos in on the desktop)
2. I worked on these files, created new output files, etc.
3. From the laptop, I used the 'export this folder as a catalog' function and exported that to an external hard drive.
4. Go back to my desktop, plug in the external drive, choose 'import from another catalog' - this is where the problem happens, all the photos I didn't touch don't show up (they show in the box on the right greyed out with an exclamation point in them). Any new photos I created show up in the new photos dialog box, below in the changed photos, the photos I changed in any way show up, the rest don't. The issue is, I'm importing them to a new folder location on the desktop, not to the original location where I might expect this behavior. I want to reimport all the photos as they are on the laptop. I'm not sure why LR is deciding that 'hey, these photos exist in some other location in this catalog so i'll ignore them).

I need to get the laptop catalog into my desktop catalog and not sure what to do. Thanks!
 

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garett_wood

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To save others time... it turns out you cannot import the same picture if it already exists in the catalog, even into another location - which is completely ridiculous, but it is what it is.
 

Roelof Moorlag

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No, it is not ridiculous, why would you want the same picture twice?
If you had made edits on one of those exisisting images than Lightroom ask you if you want to make virtual copies of it so you don't lose the edits in the main catalog. Export and import catalogs are a perfect way to have one master and (multiple) travel/project catalogs.
 

garett_wood

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Sep 6, 2019
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Yes, it is quite ridiculous. LR should not force me - it should be my decision, that is the point. I have my reasons for wanting it imported elsewhere to ensure it gets properly transferred without any problems before finalizing the process. In addition, even the Adobe support person who responded to my request didn't know it acted this way. This is data management 101 stuff. At least I know now, so will need to adjust my process accordingly - sadly it wasn't really mentioned anywhere during the process, another oversight on their part.

I agree export/import catalogs are a great feature, I never indicated otherwise.
 
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If your reasons for wanting to do that are good, I suggest you make a feature request at the official Adobe feedback site (links at the top of the page). In the meantime, if you really want those duplicates added to your catalog, it should be possible by synchronising the folder that you imported the catalog from, check the box to "Show Import Dialog", and in the resulting import dialog uncheck the "Don't Import Suspected Duplicates" box.
 

garett_wood

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Joined
Sep 6, 2019
Messages
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If your reasons for wanting to do that are good, I suggest you make a feature request at the official Adobe feedback site (links at the top of the page). In the meantime, if you really want those duplicates added to your catalog, it should be possible by synchronising the folder that you imported the catalog from, check the box to "Show Import Dialog", and in the resulting import dialog uncheck the "Don't Import Suspected Duplicates" box.
thanks... where would I find this box (don't import suspected duplicates)? this isn't the normal import function (I know of the box in that function), but this is the import catalog function, i don't see it available there. am i missing something?
 
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I didn't say import from catalog, I said synchronise the folder (right-click on the folder in the Folders Panel and click on Synchronise Folder. That's just a special form of standard import, so check the box to show the import dialog and check the Duplicates checkbox.
 

garett_wood

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Sep 6, 2019
Messages
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I didn't say import from catalog, I said synchronise the folder (right-click on the folder in the Folders Panel and click on Synchronise Folder. That's just a special form of standard import, so check the box to show the import dialog and check the Duplicates checkbox.
Sorry, I don't understand what that function has to do with me trying to import a catalog to another location. I understand what the sync folder function does, just don't understand how that's relevant to what I'm trying to accomplish. In addition, I don't see a box available to show the import dialog doing that. What am I missing? I have a catalog on an external drive, and my main catalog... I'm trying to import one to the other. They sync function won't help me do that, it only updates what is in a folder... sorry, not trying to be difficult, maybe I'm completely missing something?
 
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You cannot currently import those unedited duplicates via the "Import from another Catalog" function, so in order to get them into your main catalog you have to import them. I had assumed you had already completed the "Import from Catalog" function, hence my advice to then use the Synchronise Folder function to import those unedited duplicates.

Another way, if you haven't already run the "Import from Catalog" procedure, would be to open that mini-catalog on the desktop and rename all those unedited files (maybe add a "Duplicate" suffix to the current name), that can be done in one batch command, then the "Import from Catalog" process should not see those renamed files as duplicates and so should allow you to import them.
 

garett_wood

New Member
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Sep 6, 2019
Messages
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You cannot currently import those unedited duplicates via the "Import from another Catalog" function, so in order to get them into your main catalog you have to import them. I had assumed you had already completed the "Import from Catalog" function, hence my advice to then use the Synchronise Folder function to import those unedited duplicates.

Another way, if you haven't already run the "Import from Catalog" procedure, would be to open that mini-catalog on the desktop and rename all those unedited files (maybe add a "Duplicate" suffix to the current name), that can be done in one batch command, then the "Import from Catalog" process should not see those renamed files as duplicates and so should allow you to import them.
Okay, gotcha. I'm okay now just importing back to the original (would prefer not to, but I don't have much of an option.

I did try the renaming trick, and it didn't let me import them - it saw them as the same files. I could try that again however... thanks for your help!
 
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To save others time... it turns out you cannot import the same picture if it already exists in the catalog, even into another location - which is completely ridiculous, but it is what it is.
Why not use a virtual copy?
 

Roelof Moorlag

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A virtual copy is a seperate edited version of an image without having to duplicate it. It realy is an second set of instructions in the database for a single RAW file. That's the benefit of a non destructive DAM.
 

garett_wood

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A virtual copy is a seperate edited version of an image without having to duplicate it. It realy is an second set of instructions in the database for a single RAW file. That's the benefit of a non destructive DAM.
Thanks. I know what a virtual copy is, I'm asking how that's relevant to what I'm trying to accomplish? How would I use them?
 

Roelof Moorlag

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I know what a virtual copy is, I'm asking how that's relevant to what I'm trying to accomplish? How would I use them?
You existed to import a second version of a image. My suggestion is not doing that but using the virtual copy instead.
 

Roelof Moorlag

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I don't understand how I'd use virtual copies in this process
I discribed this in my first reply:
If you have made edits on one of those exisisting images (in the travel catalog) than Lightroom wil ask you at importing that catalog into the maincatalog if you want to make virtual copies. This way you don't lose any edits in the main catalog.
 
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Thanks. I know what a virtual copy is, I'm asking how that's relevant to what I'm trying to accomplish? How would I use them?
It would mean that a re-import would be superfluous. Remember that the physical location of an image file is irrelevant, as long as Lightroom is aware of that location.

If you need to keep track of files sent to a client, there are several ways you can do. You can keyword photos. You can use a Publishing Service. A virutal copy would allow you to edit a photo to suit one client, but giving you the flexibility to edit that photo in a different way for other purposes.
 
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