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Moving my Pictures folder to an external drive

Resoman

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My iMac's hard drive is really full, to the point where I believe it is impairing performance. The main culprit is my Pictures folder, which has over 600 GB of photos. I've got a new 1 TB external drive and would like to move the Pictures folder, but I want to do it in a way that my Lightroom catalog approves.
Could anyone offer guidance?
Thanks,
Gary,
Elgin, T
 

Johan Elzenga

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Just copy the images to the external disk. Then in the Lightroom folder panel, right-click on the top folder and choose ‘Update Folder Location’. You will get the standard MacOS ‘Open’ dialog. Navigate to the corresponding folder on the external disk and select it. Done. If you don’t have one single top folder, then repeat until all folders are now shown on the external disk. When you’re done, you can delete the pictures from the internal disk.
 

Resoman

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Thanks to all, I've got the copy process underway.
When I right click on the top folder, though, I don't get the "Update Folder Location" option. I've attached a screen shot of what I do get when I right click.
Gary
 

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Hal P Anderson

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That's what you get when you right-click on a disc name. Try right-clicking on a folder name. The disc name isn't a top-level folder. Try right-clicking on a folder and choose "Show Parent Folder".
 

Resoman

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All,
The Pictures folder was successfully copied to my external drive, and I apparently "moved" it instead of copying it, because it no longer appears on my har drive folder listing. Lightroom seems to navigate to this new location just fine, so I guess the procedure was a success, except that the hard drive doesn't have any more available space after the removal of a 600+_GB folder. It acts as if the Pictures folder is still there, but it doesn't appear in the Finder window.
I emptied the trash and restarted the iMac, and the result is the same: less than 40GB available on the hard drive.
Any ideas?
Thanks in advance,
Gary
 

Johan Elzenga

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This is often caused by some utility that creates an invisible cache of these deleted files, so it can quickly restore something without having to copy it back. I think Carbon Copy Cloner is one of them, but there are others.
 

Resoman

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Thanks, Johan -
I don't know of any such utility on my iMac, any suggestions how to proceed?
Gary
 

Johan Elzenga

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The strange thing is that MacOS X does not allow you to ‘move’ between disks that easily, so I wonder how you could have done this without knowing it. Is it possible you moved the folder inside another folder without realising it? That is more likely. Disconnect the external disk, then search for one of the images in the Finder. See if that brings up the image after all.
 

LouieSherwin

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Is your main drive a SSD? If so this is probably an APFS volume and there may be a snapshot (a kind of realtime backup) created that still contains all the images that you moved to the new hard drive. Carbon Copy Cloner allows you to manage and create snapshots. I have not yet learned how you can manage snapshots directly in MacOS but I'm sure that there is a way.

-louie
 

Tom75

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Is your main drive a SSD? If so this is probably an APFS volume and there may be a snapshot (a kind of realtime backup) created that still contains all the images that you moved to the new hard drive. Carbon Copy Cloner allows you to manage and create snapshots. I have not yet learned how you can manage snapshots directly in MacOS but I'm sure that there is a way.
Hi Louie,

I have also formated one of my new 4TB external drives with APFS, the one which holds now my picture folder but so far I have not really noticed any difference between mac os extended journaled, what is the main difference between those?

My other new 4TB drive I had to format with mac os extended journaled because that is the backup drive and I learned that time machine cannot handle APFS

Regards,
Tom
 

LouieSherwin

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I have also formated one of my new 4TB external drives with APFS, the one which holds now my picture folder but so far I have not really noticed any difference between mac os extended journaled, what is the main difference between those?
Well APFS is a new filesystem on MacOS that is optimized for SSDs. Initially it was restricted to only SSDs and you could not format a spinning HD with APFS. I guess that has changed in Mojave. One of the differences is that APFS offers "snapshots". A snapshot is basically a realtime backup. As you make changes, edits or deletions the original is retained in a hidden part of the filesystem. You could think of it as a dynamic Trash folder that also contains previous versions of edited files.

Here is an article that describes how snapshots are used. About Time Machine local snapshots.

-louie
 

Tom75

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Thanks for the info Louie

very interesting this with the snapshots but I was informed that time machine cannot be used with APFS formatted drives which is why I have formatted my time machine backup drive with mac os extended journaled

Regards,
Tom
 

Johan Elzenga

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Thanks for the info Louie

very interesting this with the snapshots but I was informed that time machine cannot be used with APFS formatted drives which is why I have formatted my time machine backup drive with mac os extended journaled

Regards,
Tom
You confuse the Time Machine backed up drive with the Time Machine destination drive. Time Machine can obviously backup an APFS drive, otherwise it wouldn't work with the latest Macs with SSD drives. And that is where those snapshots are made. Maybe the destination drive cannot be APFS, that I would not know.
 

Tom75

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You confuse the Time Machine backed up drive with the Time Machine destination drive. Time Machine can obviously backup an APFS drive, otherwise it wouldn't work with the latest Macs with SSD drives. And that is where those snapshots are made. Maybe the destination drive cannot be APFS, that I would not know.
Of course, my fault sorry..... I was thinkinbg about thge destination drive.

Thanks for crarifying.

Regards,
Tom
 
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