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Integrity checking on backup not running


New Member
Feb 12, 2019
Lightroom Experience
Lightroom Version
6.x / CC 2015.x
Lightroom Version
Lightroom version: 6.14 [ 1149743 ]
Operating System
macOS 10.10 Yosemite
As a preface, I've checked several messages, but nothing seems to quite match what I'm experiencing, therefore a new post.

My normal practice after a session with LR is to backup, check integrity, and optimize, every time I close LR. Last week I imported over 1,400 images, added some tags, etc. Closed LR, and the backup took a long time, as normal. "Long time" being 15 minutes or longer to complete, but after the initial delay, the steps progressed to "backup", "optimize", etc and finished the process normally.

A few days later, imported another 200 images, closed LR. After a couple hours, the program still said "Checking integrity". The CPU activity was minimal, and the RAM use was normal. There was nothing to indicate the machine was exceptionally busy, therefore no reason I could see why it was so slow. Per some suggestions listed on this forum, I've restarted the computer at least once, if not twice. I unzipped a backup lrcat file that was made after the 1,400 image import and opened LR, and pointed it to the other catalog. No changes made, and immediately closed LR. Again the "Checking integrity" message for two hours or more before I aborted it.

There have been no LR updates or changes, no changes to hardware, etc, so I'm at a loss as to why my reliable, if slow, shutdown/backup of LR suddenly stopped working. I have put considerable time into entering very detailed tags on my photos, and am very reluctant to risk loss of that data.

My Lightroom Catalog.lrcat is 1.57GB; the catalog contains approximately 107,000 images.

If my backup, without integrity check, can be reliably depended on to safeguard my keywords, then maybe I can do without it. My preference would be to take the extra time, verify the integrity of the catalog, optimize for best performance, etc, and minimize risk of data loss as much as possible.

Thank you for your suggestions.


PS: Before sending this message, I opened LR again, made no changes, and immediately exited the program. I did select the backup and optimize options, but turned off the integrity check. The backup completed and the program closed in several minutes, much faster than normal. To repeat above, what is the risk of not doing integrity checking?
Jun 20, 2009
Houston, TX USA
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Lightroom Version
Classic 8
Integrity check is a data base maintenance operation that makes sure (among other things) that all of the related tables have matching records (i.e. no orphan records in the subordinate tables). Continuity is verified between tables in the data base. Also indexes are checked and rebuilt. If running slow it may mean that there are some unresolvable issues and might suggest an unstable possibly corrupt database/catalog. If you run "Export as a Catalog" on all of the images, only valid records will be included in the new copy of the catalog. This new copy of the catalog should run few backup process more quickly. And can serve as a replacement for your master catalog. You can try the "Export as a Catalog" process to see if it improves your normal exit. You can use a backup or your last master if you don't like the results of the "Export as a Catalog".

The Optimise process makes the database compact so that there are no empty slots where deleted records used to exist. This makes the database smaller and more efficient.
Jun 24, 2010
Encinitas, CA USA
Lightroom Experience
Lightroom Version
Classic 7
Just one note to add to what Cletus has said, exporting a catalog will not include any Published Collections if you have them. That is the potential down side which is probably better than having a flakey catalog.

There is a plug-in Lightroom Voyager that is designed to help you migrate published services from one catalog to another if that is some thing that you need to do.