• Welcome to the Lightroom Queen Forums! We're a friendly bunch, so please feel free to register and join in the conversation. If you're not familiar with forums, you'll find step by step instructions on how to post your first thread under Help at the bottom of the page. You're also welcome to download our free Lightroom Quick Start eBooks and explore our other FAQ resources.
  • Stop struggling with Lightroom! There's no need to spend hours hunting for the answers to your Lightroom Classic questions. All the information you need is in Adobe Lightroom Classic - The Missing FAQ!

    To help you started, there's a series of easy tutorials to guide you through a simple workflow. As you grow in confidence, the book switches to a conversational FAQ format, so you can quickly find answers to advanced questions. And better still, the eBooks are updated for every release, so it's always up to date.

Catalogs Storing Photos and Catalog in Dropbox

fay.ratta

New Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
3
Lightroom Version
Lightroom Classic
Operating System
macOS 10.14 Mojave
I mostly work from home using Lightroom Classic on my iMac, but also travel and want to have access to upload/edit from my laptop. I've seen suggestions about storing everything on an external drive but would prefer not to have a separate piece of equipment. Would it make sense to upload all my photos to Dropbox as well as the catalog and then work from Smart Previews on whichever computer I'm currently on? I know the initial upload would be a bear and I don't have a super fast connection at home...so maybe that's the limiting factor. I guess another option is to have a 'travel' catalog that I then import when I get back home. Any and all suggestions welcome.
 

fay.ratta

New Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
3
Thanks...so I would move my current catalog folder with the lrcat files to Dropbox and build Smart Previews to put with it? Now, what about photos that I take while traveling? Do I keep them on my laptop and the catalog incorporates them? So that while working on my desktop computer I can still see them? Or at least see their Smart Previews?
 
Joined
Jul 2, 2015
Messages
8,707
Location
Netherlands
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Lightroom Version
Classic 7
Thanks...so I would move my current catalog folder with the lrcat files to Dropbox and build Smart Previews to put with it?
Yes, all you need to edit the pictures is the catalog and smart previews. You can leave the originals at home.

Now, what about photos that I take while traveling? Do I keep them on my laptop and the catalog incorporates them? So that while working on my desktop computer I can still see them? Or at least see their Smart Previews?
The images you take while traveling you import in Lightroom, and you do store these images in Dropbox. Then you can work on them like you can work with any other images. When you get home, you move the originals (using Lightroom!) from their location in Dropbox to where you store your other images.
 
Joined
May 9, 2015
Messages
257
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Some things to consider.

When working in LR, the Catalog is always being accessed and updated. you can hardly scratch your nose without something being updated in the catalog. If you internet connection is less than very good, you may be waiting a lot.

Depending on where you travel, you may not have an internet connection at all or, as in many hotels, is throttled or has firewall blocks for some types of data. If you're in such a hotel, at peak times when the rooms are full of folks streaming movies, uploading new RAW images to Dropbox may keep you up very late. If you're without an Internet connection you have plenty of time to read a good book.

Personally, I use the everything on an external HD model (with an exact copy left at home), but the travel catalog is also a decent model. I just don't trust my ability to do anything over the Internet from Laos or Peru or even Cow Springs Arizona.
 

tspear

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2014
Messages
1,754
Location
Waltham MA
Lightroom Experience
Beginner
Lightroom Version
Classic 7
I have done this with OneDrive, Dropbox, Google drive, and few role your own solutions.

The two points I would make.
1. Make sure everything is synced before opening on the other computer.
2. Dropbox is much more expensive than either Google Drive or Microsoft OneDrive.

Tim

Sent from my SM-J737T using Tapatalk
 

fay.ratta

New Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
3
Thanks everyone. I've put the catalog on Dropbox for now...if I becomes too slow, I may go with the hard drive back up and travel solution. Does that negate the need for smart previews? Are ALL your cataloged photos on the hard drive as well as the catalog itself?
 
Joined
Jul 22, 2012
Messages
44
Location
Cheshire, CT
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Classic 8
One more comment or clarification about Dropbox..... you can still store originals in Dropbox when you are traveling even with a bad or slow internet connection, just turn off or pause the Dropbox sync. Your originals will stay in the Dropbox folder on your laptop hard drive anyway, then they will sync up to Dropbox and any other computer once you have a connection. You do need to remember that without the sync up to Dropbox servers you'll only have the copy on your hard drive so you may want to think about having a second backup somewhere, or not erasing/reusing the cards, just in case.
 
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Messages
1,686
Location
California, USA
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Classic 8
One more comment or clarification about Dropbox..... you can still store originals in Dropbox when you are traveling even with a bad or slow internet connection, just turn off or pause the Dropbox sync. Your originals will stay in the Dropbox folder on your laptop hard drive anyway, then they will sync up to Dropbox and any other computer once you have a connection. You do need to remember that without the sync up to Dropbox servers you'll only have the copy on your hard drive so you may want to think about having a second backup somewhere, or not erasing/reusing the cards, just in case.
When I travel, I always carry a "photo backup" external hard drive, which I do not keep in my camera bag.
 
Top