How can I rename a catalog?

lbeck

Active Member
Joined
May 21, 2015
Messages
137
Location
Hillsborough, NC
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Lightroom Version
6.14
Operating System
  1. Windows 10
According to Victoria's Lr 6 FAQ book:
*******************************************************************************************************
How do I rename my catalog?
Lightroom doesn’t offer a catalog renaming tool, but you can rename the catalog in Explorer (Windows) / Finder (Mac) as if you were
renaming any other file. Just make sure you close Lightroom first. Figure 21.3 In the Catalog Settings
dialog, you can check how much space your catalog and previews are using.
When you rename the catalog file, you should also rename the preview folders/files to match. For example:
Lightroom Catalog.lrcat > New Name.lrcat Lightroom Catalog Previews.lrdata > New Name Previews.lrdata
Lightroom Catalog Smart Previews.lrdata > New Name Smart Previews.lrdata After renaming, double-click on the catalog file (*.lrcat) to open it into
Lightroom.

*****************************************************************************************************
But when I follow these instructions I lose the location of my photos. The screenshots below:
  1. First - the original catalog named "Consolidated L Sept-2019
  2. second - renamed the catalog "trial"
  3. third - Lr shows all photos missing

Fortunately, I was able to undo the renaming of the catalog to the original names to get my photos back to their original homes. I can remap the location but this would take hundreds of iterations of finding the individual folders and subfolders. Am I doing something wrong?

rename 1.jpg
rename explorer.jpg

rename 2.jpg
 
Joined
Sep 29, 2007
Messages
22,824
Location
Isle of Wight, UK
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Lightroom Version
Cloud Service
Your catalog is inside a folder of the same name, which also includes a bunch of photos. You've renamed the folder.

Two options:
1. Don't rename the folder, just the catalog files mentioned.
2. Rename the folder as you have done, then right-click on the missing folder in the Folders panel, choose Find Missing Folder and point it to the new folder name.
 

lbeck

Active Member
Joined
May 21, 2015
Messages
137
Location
Hillsborough, NC
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Yes. I did option 2 and it worked just fine.
Thanks again for your generous help.
Lee
Here I am...again.
I've tried to rename my catalog and find it again problematic. I followed the procedure shown in my first post to rename various Lr files. Then:
  1. First - the original catalog named "11-15-2019"
  2. second - renamed the catalog "2-01-2020"
  3. third - Lr shows all photos missing

1580443718124.png


I've tried to back-out of my misdirected commands and have reached the limit of Lr's undo commands. Before going further I feel that I'd better post here.

I don't see how renaming a catalog should be so difficult. But be is at it's may, can you offer advice on how I can complete the renaming or at least go back to my revised catalog?

Thanks
 

Wernfried

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2017
Messages
158
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Why do you rename your catalog again and again? And why do you use more than just one catalog?
I don't see any reason for this and obviously there is a high risk to corrupt your data.
 
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
17,264
Location
Houston, TX USA
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Lightroom Version
Cloud Service
Here I am...again.
I've tried to rename my catalog and find it again problematic. I followed the procedure shown in my first post to rename various Lr files. Then:
  1. First - the original catalog named "11-15-2019"
  2. second - renamed the catalog "2-01-2020"
  3. third - Lr shows all photos missing
I've tried to back-out of my misdirected commands and have reached the limit of Lr's undo commands. Before going further I feel that I'd better post here.

I don't see how renaming a catalog should be so difficult. But be is at it's may, can you offer advice on how I can complete the renaming or at least go back to my revised catalog?

Thanks
Renaming a catalog is not difficult. When the original catalog was named "11-15-2019", the photos were probably already missing if they were missing once the catalog file was named "2-01-2020".

Nothing inside the catalog changes just the file name on the outside. If you move the catalog to another drive or move the master images files, Lightroom Classic might lose the path to the original images if the new path is different from the path information stored in the catalog file.

I am puzzled as to why you have a catalog with a date as part of the name. You only need one catalog file for all of your work. It does not make sense to name a file with a date in the name that shall be used for years to collect all of your image data.
The Default catalog file name is "Lightroom Catalog.lrcat". If your database in the catalog file is changed significantly by Adobe, Adobe will convert the old catalog structure and rename the master catalog "Lightroom Catalog-2.lrcat". All of the filesand folders in the catalog folder (usually/Pictures/Lightroom/) with a name similar to the "[catalog name].lrcat should also be renamed with the [catalog name] part of these files and folder taking the same name part as the new catalog name. A long time ago, I got tired of Adobe appending "-2" to the name of my current master catalog. If you go through several version upgrades that default catalog name of "Lightroom Catalog.lrcat" becomes "Lightroom Catalog-2-2-2-2.lrcat". So, years ago I relmamerd my master catalog from "Lightroom Catalog.lrcat" to "Master.lrcat". and for every Master-2.lrcat upgrade, I move the old "Master.lrcat". to another location and rename "Master-2.lrcat" to "Master.lrcat". All of my images that I have kept since I started Lightroom in 2007 are in my master catalog that I have consistently renamed when needed to keep it "Master.lrcat".
 
Joined
Jan 6, 2018
Messages
391
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Lightroom Version
Classic
As others, I don't understand your renaming logic.
As Cletus, I do rename my catalog after each ugrade, but by adding the LR version. So currently, may catalog is named "Lightroom Catalog v9". Next time LR will upgrade it (say with with version 10), it will create a "Lightroom Catalog v9-2" that I'll rename "Lightroom Catalog v10". I'll keep the catalog "Lightroom Catalog v9" for some time, until I'll be sure I won't have to go back to LR 9.
 

Wernfried

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2017
Messages
158
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
As others, I don't understand your renaming logic.
As Cletus, I do rename my catalog after each ugrade, but by adding the LR version. So currently, may catalog is named "Lightroom Catalog v9". Next time LR will upgrade it (say with with version 10), it will create a "Lightroom Catalog v9-2" that I'll rename "Lightroom Catalog v10". I'll keep the catalog "Lightroom Catalog v9" for some time, until I'll be sure I won't have to go back to LR 9.

Why do you rename the catalog? Simply make a backup of your current catalog and continue using it. Of course, renaming the backup file (is is just a single zip-file) is no issue at all.
 

lbeck

Active Member
Joined
May 21, 2015
Messages
137
Location
Hillsborough, NC
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Thanks for the replies. I see that renaming is not the preferred approach for updating a Lr catalog. My reasons are 1) data-loss paranoia and 2) good housekeeping. However, Johan, Cletus, and Wernfried all mention in their posts that they renamed for various reasons. Phil suggests simply cloning your master catalog - which I did 3 months ago. But my renaming resulted in all missing photos in my current catalog. I'm certain that all the photos are there. I checked for missing photos prior to renaming and Lr said all photos are available.

Recently I lost a HDD that contained my only catalog. So now with inexpensive storage, I've made a habit of occasionally making a clone of my catalog on a different drive. In fact, I do have a good copy of "11-15-2019", which is an update of the September 19 catalog. However, I spend many hours in each iteration of my catalog by deleting and editing hundreds of photos. If I'm forced to go back to my "11-15-2019" version I've lost hundreds of hours of work.

In addition to data-loss paranoia, I plan to split my master catalog to several catalogs like "Family", Weddings, Travel, and maybe others. My current 23+K master catalog is getting bloated. I use my photos for various reasons. I'm aware that I can have each category as a collection and "export as a catalog" and I plan to do that for categories that are fairly constant. I don't do weddings often anymore so I don't need to carry that baggage along with each opening of my catalog. There's only a few of the half-dozen or so of the "sub-catalogs" that will be active. Most will ultimately be archives.

So we all have different work habits. But back to my post - How do you archive. I've done it successfully in the past but for some reason now it doesn't address any of the photos in my library. I know that the relative path needs to be exact but I've checked that several times and can't find a mismatch.
 
Joined
Jan 6, 2018
Messages
391
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Lightroom Version
Classic
I plan to split my master catalog to several catalogs like "Family", Weddings, Travel, and maybe others. My current 23+K master catalog is getting bloated
Of course, you can do as you want, but in your case I think that splitting to several catalogs is a bad idea and it won't fix your problem. 23+K is very small and your catalog (the .lrdat file) shouldn't be that big. Some people have more than 200K photos whithout any performance problem! The catalog is a database, the number of photos doesn't impact the catalog performance.
If you're thinking of the size of the preview folder, it doesn't impact the performance either, and splitting the catalog won't reduce the total size, it will just lead to several previews folders.
 

lbeck

Active Member
Joined
May 21, 2015
Messages
137
Location
Hillsborough, NC
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Thanks for all the input. I've now solved my initial query regarding renaming a catalog. It's really quite simple but I was a little tentative to try the approach fearing that I might lose some pictures or their metadata. The solution is as recommended by Victoria in her Sept. 16 post above. The reason that my try at Victoria's solution initially didn't work is that I only renamed the lr* files but didn't move the parent folder containing all my pictures.

After changing the drive letter and moving the parent pictures folder the files and all my work of the past few months is now saved.
 
Top