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Catalogs Smart Preview Catalog File

RSK

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Hello,
I'm in the process of moving my photos from an old external hard drive to a new one. I've been going through and creating Smart Previews for all the photos. When I check my catalog files on the drive, I see the main catalog.lrcat, previews.lrcat and smartpreviews.lrcat. However, the Smart Previews.lrcat does not show a current date, while the main catalog and previews catalogs do. How do I know the Smart Previews catalog is current? I double-checked the catalog name and location.

Thanks!
Scott
 
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Just ignore it, it will be current. This is not really a file, but a so-called 'package'. That is a folder that looks like a file in the Finder and can be double clicked. The modification date of a package does not (always) reflect what happens inside this package.
 

RSK

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Thanks Johan, much appreciated.

Once all my photos and catalog files are safely on the new external drive, my next action will be to unmount the drive and remount to my new iMac. Once I download LR to the new computer, do you know if LR will automatically show my photos - or will I have to somehow direct it to the new catalog and photo location?
 
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You will have to start Lightroom with that catalog on the external disk. You can do that by double clicking the catalog file. You only have to do that once. After that, Lightroom will remember which catalog to use.
 
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How do I know the Smart Previews catalog is current? I double-checked the catalog name and location.
It is not really a catalog FILE called Smart Previews.lrcat, it is a folder of many sub folders and an index file. The folder name is "Smart Previews.lrdata" These special folders are called packages and you can right click on the "package" and choose "Show package contents" to drill down into the sub folder to find your smart previews image files. The date shown is the date when this package outer folder envelope was created. Newer folders inside will show near create dates.
 
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RSK

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You will have to start Lightroom with that catalog on the external disk. You can do that by double clicking the catalog file. You only have to do that once. After that, Lightroom will remember which catalog to use.

Johan,
To clarify, once I connect the new external HD to my new iMac, I double-click the catalog file to open LR - even though the new computer was just set up and I don't have the LR app on it yet?
 
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