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New Member
Feb 2, 2018
Lightroom Experience
Lightroom Version
Operating System: Windows 10
Exact Lightroom Version (Help menu > System Info): 7.1

Hello, new member here, and hoping someone will know how to help me out!

I just finished building a new PC, and really excited to be working on a much faster machine, but also because it will help me improve my workflow. I have been using Lightroom for a long time, and know it really well, but I'm getting a bit confused on what to do in this situation.

My previous PC was a laptop, and basically my workflow was to plug my SD card into my laptop, and then transfer those images to an external HD, where my Lightroom catalog was located.

The workflow I now want to implement is that I will transfer my images from my SD card to the SSD drive on my PC where my Lightroom catalog will be, and once I am done editing that shoot, I will transfer those images to a much larger internal HDD, have a backup happen from there to an external HD, and finally cloud backup.

My problem is I'm not quite sure how to go the opposite way (moving everything from the external to the HDD/SSD) to get everything situated before starting this workflow.

My initial idea was to transfer everything from my external drive to my internal HDD (already completed), and then move my Lightroom catalog to the SSD, where I could transfer some of the shoots I have not finished from the HDD to the SSD, work on them on the SSD, and then have it transferred back. I have tried this, but Lightroom is still pointing to all of the images on the external HD!

I've also thought about creating a new catalog on the SSD and then merging the old catalog witht he new one, but I'm not sure if that will work. I have imported a catalog from one external to another, but I was still only working with 1 drive, not multiple.

Any suggestions on what I should do? Any help will much much appreciated!!

What you needed to have done (and obviously did not) was to do your image transfer from within Lightroom. This is a simple drag-and-drop procedure.
However, all, is most definitely, not lost.
If, apart from the fact that the drive where the images are now is different, the folder structure is otherwise identical then it is a simple matter to re-acquaint Lightroom with the current location of your images by going to the top-level folder of your image collection in Library module - it should have a question mark next to it telling you that Lightroom does not know where the folder is - and right click on that folder.
An option called "Find missing folder" will appear. Select it and Windows Explorer appears. Navigate to the top-level folder in Explorer on the new drive and select that folder and press choose at the bottom right of the Explorer window.

Lightroom, should, if the folder structure is identical to before, automatically link up with every folder in your collection, from the top-level folder down.

Moving the catalog is easy.
The catalog and everything else of importance is in a folder called "Lightroom".
You can find where it is via Catalog Settings>General>click on show.

Once you know where it is, with Lightroom closed, copy that folder containing the catalog and preview files, to its new location. Once that is successfully done open Lightroom for the first time by double clicking on the actual .lrcat file, that is your catalog, found in that folder. This lets the Lightroom executable know where the catalog, and preview files, are now located. If everything has gone well then delete the Lightroom folder in its old location.

It also goes without saying that you should do complete back-ups of every drive that is involved in all the relocations BEFORE doing any of this. This means that if something does go wrong then one can fall back to the back-ups and restore everything before either having another go or modifying the process
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