How many pictures can LR handle? Frequent crashes on large imports

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jjtiziou

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Hi there kind folks,

I was wondering what the largest numbers of images were that people out there were working with in Lightroom.

I'm currently testing out the 3'day trial to see how it works with my archive (it's a lot of images- almost half a million pics) - I've been experiencing frequent crashes when trying to add images in batches of around 5','''.

At a glance, LR is doing ok with upwards of 3'',''' images, although I haven't been using it extensively, as I'm waiting a few more days to get the rest of the stuff imported.

Basically, if I throw 5',''' images or so at it, It parses through the folder, and seems perfectly willing to go ahead and import all of the files. I hit 'go', and it runs for several hours, and usually manages to import them all, but then crashes once the import ends. (no, I am not generating large previews as it goes) Once restarted, it looks fine, and I've just been re-starting the import from the last files...

I'm running under mac osX 1'.4.1', on a dual 2.5ghz g5 with 8gb ram (admitedly, this is now an older machine and I should be upgrading to an intel MacPro when they next get revised- but I'd think that the machine specs would affect the speed of import, and not the stability of the actual program)

At any rate, I'm just wondering if other people out there are working with large Libraries, and hoping that Adobe realizes that robustness for this kind of thing would definitely be a plus.

Many thanks,
-jj
 
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jjtiziou;269' said:
Hi there kind folks,

I was wondering what the largest numbers of images were that people out there were working with in Lightroom.

I'm currently testing out the 3'day trial to see how it works with my archive (it's a lot of images- almost half a million pics) - I've been experiencing frequent crashes when trying to add images in batches of around 5','''.

At a glance, LR is doing ok with upwards of 3'',''' images, although I haven't been using it extensively, as I'm waiting a few more days to get the rest of the stuff imported.

Basically, if I throw 5',''' images or so at it, It parses through the folder, and seems perfectly willing to go ahead and import all of the files. I hit 'go', and it runs for several hours, and usually manages to import them all, but then crashes once the import ends. (no, I am not generating large previews as it goes) Once restarted, it looks fine, and I've just been re-starting the import from the last files...

I'm running under mac osX 1'.4.1', on a dual 2.5ghz g5 with 8gb ram (admitedly, this is now an older machine and I should be upgrading to an intel MacPro when they next get revised- but I'd think that the machine specs would affect the speed of import, and not the stability of the actual program)

At any rate, I'm just wondering if other people out there are working with large Libraries, and hoping that Adobe realizes that robustness for this kind of thing would definitely be a plus.

Many thanks,
-jj

JJ, if you could please fill in your signature you won't need to tell us what system you are using.
Experience seem to be that large catalogs slow LR down markedly especially when standard previews have been rendered.
I have small catalogs for the types of work I do e.g. personal, clients (individual catalogs for sensitive clients), weddings, portraits, etc,
Then I have a master catalog which has all the images in it but is not used for anything much except keeping track of everything.
I hope that one day LR will get better with this but in the meantime this works well for me.
 

jjtiziou

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Joined
Nov 6, 2007
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Lighroom and large volumes of images

Experience seem to be that large catalogs slow LR down markedly especially when standard previews have been rendered.

Right- it's not so much the slowdown that's a concern to me, but rather the actual crashing. I'd be fine with it if it took hours to import, or a long time to do a "find" - but the instability is more stressful.

It crashed on another import this morning, and upon relaunch is doing a "Now Checking Integrity of catalog - this may take several minutes" step. It's already been checking for an hour. Last time this happened, I force quit the program, and then it relaunched fine, with no acknowledgment of the earlier crash. This time I might let it run longer to see if it can actually finish this check or if it's just hanging.

I have small catalogs for the types of work I do e.g. personal, clients (individual catalogs for sensitive clients), weddings, portraits, etc,
Then I have a master catalog which has all the images in it but is not used for anything much except keeping track of everything.
I hope that one day LR will get better with this but in the meantime this works well for me.

Yeah, that's useful to a certain degree, but does sort of defeat the purpose of having one application designed to handle your whole photo library. That sort of separation should be accomplished by metadata within it.

I certainly hope that future versions will make the code a bit more robust to be able to better deal with larger volumes of images. (I'd take reliable over fast, definitely)

In the meanwhile I think that my workaround will be to use PhotoMechanic to do my first round or two of editing, and then only dump the selects into Lightroom, so that it would be more of a portfolio manager than a full library manager.

Thanks for the followup-
-jj
 
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melissa

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Couple more options:

Cut the import number in about half. We've seen crashes on import (hard to track down...but they've been seen), and it usually works better to throw no more than 2',''' at a time at the app.

Also, turn off Build Previews on Import when doing large imports.

And, run a reliable memory check application at your RAM. LR will find iffy RAM faster than almost any other applictation :)
 

jjtiziou

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melissa;27'9 said:
Couple more options:

Cut the import number in about half. We've seen crashes on import (hard to track down...but they've been seen), and it usually works better to throw no more than 2',''' at a time at the app.

Thanks Melissa- yep, I suppose that's realistic. I was kind of hoping that I could just have it import *everything* in one fell swoop, even if that meant the computer churning at it for days... but looks like I'll have to feed it in segments. Not the end of the world by far, as once it's all the old stuff is in there, everything new would be coming in in smaller batches.

melissa;27'9 said:
Also, turn off Build Previews on Import when doing large imports.

I forgot to clarify- I've never had that box checked- so no preview building was contributing to the problems.

(as an aside-> I'd like to see an option where lightroom keeps previews of only files that meet certain criteria, such as rankings of two stars and up, or certain keywords- so as to be able to have those previews accessible without making the catalog unnecessarily ginormous with previews for all of the outtakes)

melissa;27'9 said:
And, run a reliable memory check application at your RAM. LR will find iffy RAM faster than almost any other applictation :)

Good call- I'll double check it with TechTool, as I've got a copy of that lying around. If there's any other app you'd recommend, let me know. I'll report back if I get any error reports..

thanks, and have a lovely day,
-jj
 
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