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Lightroom 4 Folders below a certain folder will not open - Lightroom becomes "unresponsive"

jillfrawley

New Member
Joined
Oct 19, 2021
Messages
2
Location
Australia
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
4.x
Lightroom Version
Lightroom 4
Operating System
  1. Windows 10
I have Lightroom 4 and have been using it for a number of years.

BACKGROUND
Over the last few weeks, I have been gradually importing some years of older photos to the catalogue - without any issues (Lightroom 4).
The Catalogue currently has almost 70,000 photos in it.
My catalogue structure is Pictures , >My LIGHTROOM PHOTOS, .>Several hundred folders in a chronological sequence e.g. 2016-07-28 Bill and Susie .
I then have a number of Folders in an Alphabetical sequence. - including one >COMMERCIAL WORK, This folder has around 20,000 photos in it, (which I understand are part of the overall 70,000) and it has a number of subfolders.
While I have backed up the Catalogue within the Computer, I have not exported the Catalogue to a separate external hard drive. (Very dumb I realize - Not sure if I can still do this, given the issues below)

CURRENT PROBLEM
While I was going through various 2021 folders a couple of days ago, in the Library module, deleting occasional files, when I got to a certain point, the folders would not open. When I would persist, - the screen would white out, and it would say at the top, Lightroom 4 Catalog Adobe Photoshop Lightroom - Library (Not responding)
It would not become responsive even in an hour, so I would close it down, turn off the computer and start again.
This problem has not resolved . It appears to switch from opening folders to not opening folders at a certain point - a 2021 (July ) folder. The initial folder that is "non-responsive" varies on some but not every occasion.
No folder below that point will open. Everything "above" that point, is fine until the screen whites out..
Once it becomes non responsive, nothing will open.
Help!
 
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
18,386
Location
Houston, TX USA
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Lightroom Version
Cloud Service
I'm not up on the current Microsoft limitations but I recall that there is a limit to the length of the path for nested files. The path "C:\Users\[your user name]\Pictures\My LIGHTROOM PHOTOS\{a bunch of sub folders]\2021\{some file name}". Might be too long for Windows or your ancient version of Lightroom to handle, hence the unresponsive behavior. Do you see this unresponsive ness when you are drilling deep into your folder structure?
Lightroom 4 is long beyond it's sell by date and Windows 10 features had not even been considered when Adobe stopped supporting Lightroom 4.

I can't say for sure, but if you subscribed to the latest version (Lightroom Classic v10) which has been tested and supported on Windows 10, I'm guessing that your problem would go away.
 

jillfrawley

New Member
Joined
Oct 19, 2021
Messages
2
Location
Australia
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
4.x
Thanks for your reply and help. I was not "deep" in the folder structure when it first happened. Rather I had just added 100 or more chronological folders to my more basic chronological area - which just comes below \pictures\My Lightroom Photos..................
Nor was I in trying to open one of the newly added folders.
The folder structure below the problematic folders, is more complex (more nesting , if that's the correct term) and they are all unresponsive.
The only thing that changes when I try to open folders, is that the uppermost problematic folder varies slightly - but is in the same general area each time.

If I do upgrade to Lightroom Classic, do you think the folders that currently will not open, will become active again, or will I have to reimport them all.
 
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
18,386
Location
Houston, TX USA
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Lightroom Version
Cloud Service
If I do upgrade to Lightroom Classic, do you think the folders that currently will not open, will become active again, or will I have to reimport them all.
I think the problem is Windows related and going from Lightroom (Classic) v4 to v10 helping is only a guess. Likely it will not change that unless the older v4 uses an out of date Windows API. You can install a trial version of the Photography Plan and it will copy and convert your master catalog to the v10 database structure and you can see if v10 solves your problem.

If it does then upgrading to the latest version of Lightroom Classic is your next step. If it doesn't, then You are going to need to rework your folder names and structure (flatter) until you get around this Windows Limitation.

Another thing that we could try is for you to send me a copy of your v4 catalog file and I could convert it to v10 and try navigating the folder panel on my Mac to the same depth to see if it is just a windows thing.
 
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