• 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 get 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.
  • It's Lightroom update time again. Just some small tweaks as well as cameras/lenses and bugs! See this blog post for Lightroom Classic and this blog post for the Lightroom Cloud Ecosystem changes.

Suggestion to update the Backup tutorial

pedz

Perry Smith
Joined
Sep 23, 2014
Messages
107
Location
Leander, TX USA
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Lightroom Version
Lightroom Classic version: 11.1 [ 202112022200-7fd1f998 ]
Operating System
  1. macOS 12 Monterey

Which Lightroom files do I need to back up?

does not mention the .lrcat-data directory which I assume needs to be backed up with the .lrcat database file. Another web site says that this started in Version 11.
Also, either a summary at the bottom or a numbered TOC at the top would help me to know for sure I've ticked off all the things I need to backup:

  1. The Catalog
  2. The Previews
  3. The Catalog Backups
  4. The Photos
  5. Your Presets & Templates
  6. Settings shared with Camera Raw
  7. Plug-ins you’ve installed
  8. Your Lightroom Serial Number
  9. Your Preferences
 
Last edited by a moderator:

pedz

Perry Smith
Joined
Sep 23, 2014
Messages
107
Location
Leander, TX USA
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Yes, that could be mentioned. But the Backup process on exiting Lightroom Classic also backs up that package folder along side the catalog file automatically. Making a backup of that backup folder will get both.
That's an interesting point. I'm writing a script to go through the 9 pieces and might end up skipping the part of backing up The Catalog because, as you mention, I already have backups of it.
 
Joined
Jul 2, 2015
Messages
12,007
Location
Netherlands
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Why backup the previews ? The previews takes a lot of space and a lot time to backup. Since they can always be reconstructed as long as you still have the originals and the catalog, in may opinion backuping them is a waste of time end space.
I can answer that question. No, you do not need to backup the previews. Lightroom can rebuild them if needed. But rebuilding previews takes time. Depending on the speed of your computer and drive, it can take one or two seconds per preview. That may not sound much, but it does mean that it takes half a minute to regenerate a grid of thirty previews, so scrolling through a few hundred images to find the one you are looking for may become quite slow. For me, that is reason enough to backup the previews too. And no, contrary to what you suggest, that doesn’t take that much time because only those previews that have changed will be backed up if you use a decent backup utility. They do take up space, that is true. But to me it’s well worth it.
 

pedz

Perry Smith
Joined
Sep 23, 2014
Messages
107
Location
Leander, TX USA
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
I can answer that question. No, you do not need to backup the previews. Lightroom can rebuild them if needed. But rebuilding previews takes time. Depending on the speed of your computer and drive, it can take one or two seconds per preview. That may not sound much, but it does mean that it takes half a minute to regenerate a grid of thirty previews, so scrolling through a few hundred images to find the one you are looking for may become quite slow. For me, that is reason enough to backup the previews too. And no, contrary to what you suggest, that doesn’t take that much time because only those previews that have changed will be backed up if you use a decent backup utility. They do take up space, that is true. But to me it’s well worth it.
My question is: does the location of a preview for a particular image stay constant? And, of course, there are the previews as well as the smart previews. Both appear to be down a path that is some type of hash. That's fine. But does the hash for a particular image stay the same? My particular backup is rsync without the --delete option (for a couple of reasons) so if they move around, I'm going to end up with tons of unused previews in my backups.
 
Joined
Jul 2, 2015
Messages
12,007
Location
Netherlands
Lightroom Experience
Power User
My question is: does the location of a preview for a particular image stay constant? And, of course, there are the previews as well as the smart previews. Both appear to be down a path that is some type of hash. That's fine. But does the hash for a particular image stay the same? My particular backup is rsync without the --delete option (for a couple of reasons) so if they move around, I'm going to end up with tons of unused previews in my backups.
All I know is that you can copy catalog folders from one place to another, and they will still work. Running Lightroom directly from the backup catalog disk works as well. So restoring a complete catalog folder from a backup will work too. Restoring individual previews from a backup may not work, but that is not interesting to me. In that case it’s much quicker to let Lightroom rebuild them.
 

pedz

Perry Smith
Joined
Sep 23, 2014
Messages
107
Location
Leander, TX USA
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
I got curious about all the preview stuff and started horsing around with my previews -- deleting them inside and outside of LR, etc. In particular, where are the 1:1 previews????

It turns out they are down the same path as the standard preview for a particular image. If you build a 1:1 preview or if you zoom to 100%, the standard preview is replaced or modified with the 1:1 preview. In my examples, it went from 1.1M to 5.4M. Then back to 1.1M when the 1:1 previews are purged.
 
Joined
Nov 5, 2017
Messages
1,505
Location
UK
Lightroom Experience
Power User
Lightroom Version
Classic
Also, either a summary at the bottom or a numbered TOC at the top would help me to know for sure I've ticked off all the things I need to backup:
Good suggestion, thanks, we did that (with links to jump to the relevant portion of the post).
 
Top