LR3.6: Fails to export image adjustments when exporting catalogs

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TheFantasticG

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I'm using LR3.6 on a Win7 64 machine.

1) I export a catalog by selecting the folders I want to export as a catalog I go to "File>Export as Catalog>"
2) I check the "Export w/Negatives" and "Include Available Previews"
3) I name the file and choose my folder
4) I proceed to export

:D

1) Friend calls and wants a disc of the wedding images I have
2) No problem. I load up the catalog that I had previous exported with those edited images on it
3) Become irate because all the adjustments on the images are gone!!!!
4) Google and search photography forums for answers only to find none
5) Was directed here and told to post about it (after searching of course)

So now you know where I am. Can someone please for the love of all that is Holy and Pure tell me where I screwed up or what I'm missing! Any help would be appreciated.
 

TheFantasticG

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I think I may have just found the answer to my own question. Apparently it doesn't save the edits that were done to the image to catalog. LR3 saves the edits you do to the image to the raw file (I'm guessing side car or some crap). Because when I imported the catalog it imported it from the back up drive (G:) and not from the drive that i use to do my editing from (D:) so... I guess that's the answer.

Can any one confirm or deny this?
 
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Er, not really. There wouldn't be much point of having a catalog if all the edits weren't stored in it. You can optionally have some (most) of the metadata stored in XMP sidecars (for proprietary Raw) or directly in the file header (for other formats), but that is additional to having the information stored in the catalog.

So it would be more likely that there's a breakdown in your workflow logic, we just need to find what it is. And possibly where you say "Because when I imported the catalog it imported it from the back up drive (G:) and not from the drive that i use to do my editing from" that's a big clue. For a start Lightroom doesn't make decisions about what catalog to open, that's the users job to instruct it, so I'm guessing you've simply opened the wrong catalog file. Find the correct one that you created during the export, open that, and check again.

Welcome to the forum, BTW!
 

TheFantasticG

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Thanks on the welcome.

I was wrong on what I thought it was doing. None of my adjustments were saved with any of the catalogs that I have saved thus far. The catalog I opened has NOT saved the edits. None. All of my catalogs are saved to the same folder on my G: and there's only ONE catalog for the time span that I am trying to open. There's no way to open the wrong catalog file because for 2011, there's just that one catalog for 2011.
 
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Hi TheFantasticG, welcome to the forum!

I haven't heard any other reports of export as catalog exporting without settings, so I think there's something else going on here.

Tell us more about your entire workflow from start to finish.

And, in that exported catalog that you've just opened, select a photo and look at History in Develop module. I'm interested to know how many steps are shown, and if there's only one, what does it say?

I have a few ideas of what could have happened, but let's narrow it down a bit.
 

TheFantasticG

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1) Import from camera through Nikon's software ViewNX 2 where I do my initial cull, star rate, and color code images that are on my D: HDD. It also creates a copy to my G: HDD at the same time.
2) In Nikon's software ViewNX 2 I make my folders on my D: HDD and move the images to my main photography folder. Save all changes. Close program.
3) Open LR3.6 then import images from the D: HDD (main photography folder). I proceed to do all my edits then export through plug ins to Flickr, FB, SM, or HDD.

That's it. It's been working pretty damn well for me... At the end of 2011 I decided to start in and make a catalog for each year. I read up on it and NO WHERE was it EVER mentioned that LR3 would NOT save edits along with the file. So I exported as I outlined above. When I click on an image that from the catalog for 2011 that I just opened that I farking know I just edited under "HISTORY" in the Develop Module there is NOTHING except the import date.
 
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I read up on it and NO WHERE was it EVER mentioned that LR3 would NOT save edits along with the file.

I'm not sure exactly what you mean by "save edits along with the file".

So let's start again:

1. The catalog is a real-time database, meaning changes you make to images within the catalog are instantly written back to the database.
2. By default NONE of these changes are stored anywhere in the actual image files, though there is an option to do this. Using that option or not makes no difference to the "Export as Catalog".
3. When you select "Export as Catalog", the new catalog is created containing ALL the metadata, including develop history, apart from Publish Services collections.

So, given that to date I have NEVER heard of a situation where the metadata changes weren't stored in the catalog, or they weren't included in an "Export as Catalog" process, it tends to indicate that something wasn't done correctly when you did that export.

Can I suggest a very simple trial:

1. Open any catalog, choose a single image, go into develop, make half a dozen random develop edits.
2. Go back into Library and with that one single image selected hit the 6 key to label it Red, then do File>Export as Catalog. No need to check the "include negatives" box. Give the exported catalog an easy to identify name (e.g. Fred), then click Save.
3. Then, without closing Lightroom, do File>Open Recent and the Fred.lrcat should be top of the list. Click to select.
4. When the Fred catalog opens you should have that one image, it should have a red label, and if you go to develop it should have the 6 develop edits in the History.

If that doesn't happen then we have an issue which we'll need to try to get to the bottom of, but if it does work as expected then we'll need to try to work out what went wrong initially.
 

TheFantasticG

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Ok. I'm not by my computer at the moment but before I left this morning I figured out something. What I forgot was that I had moved computers and the drives Names are different (but the folder names and image locations remained the same) than what the catalog has in it. So I found a back up catalog file that Lightroom did automatically and it contained my develop history for each image. So I Located the folders and it said they were in use by another catalog do you want to merge? Why yes lo and behold the newly merged catalog contains the correct folders and the develop history. I'll be keeping that in mind next time I swap around HDDs.
 
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LR doesn't know anything about other catalogs, so it couldn't have known that they were in another catalog. I think the message you may have seen said the folder was already in the current catalog, and wanted to merge. It's great that you've got all of your data back.

Let's use the opportunity to clear a few basics up for you, to avoid anything like this going wrong again.

LR stores its settings in a catalog - it's a database. It can store some settings in xmp (sidecars/header data) but that's not turned on by default.
Back up your catalog regularly.
Never remove and re-import photos as you'll lose your settings.
If you need to move files, you're best to do so within LR otherwise LR will expect you to relocate the images. Again, don't remove and reimport (or use Synchronize, which does the same).

You might also want to reconsider using multiple catalogs - LR can't search across multiple catalogs, and situations like yours can arise, so unless you have a specific reason for multiple catalogs, you may find going back to a single catalog is simpler. If you need a hand doing that, please feel free to ask and we'll talk you through it.
 
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Well I don't really follow that, but I guess that's not important. If you're happy that you understand what happened, then I guess that's all that really matters.

Let us know if there are any other issues that you need help with.
 
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