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"This catalog was previously updated... "message on starting Lightroom Classic CC 8.2 Can I start again?

Diarmuid

New Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2017
Messages
7
Lightroom Experience
Beginner
Lightroom Version
Lightroom Version
Lightroom Classic CC 8.2
Operating System
macOS 10.14 Mojave
Upgraded version of catalog found:
This catalog was previously updated during the Lightroom Classic update.
Would you like to use the newer, upgraded catalog instead?"

Yesterday my son disconnected the hard drive which contains all my photos from the back of my computer. I don't know what I did when I reconnected it but somehow I screwed Lightroom up and have been unable to find all the missing folders because I've messed around so much loading backups and creating new catalogs. Now when I load Lightroom I get the message at the start of this post with the option to upgrade the oder catalog or use the newer upgraded Catalog instead. I am utterly confused but fortunately the photos on the hard drive are relatively well organised in a logical structure. Can some one tell me how to stop the above message appearing and clear out all my old catalogs etc so I can start again from scratch? Around 75% of my photos are entirely absent from the current catalog i.e. their absence is not marked by a question mark. I do realise I will lose all my edits if I take this course of action but I cannot find the catalog.lrcatfile I need. I am using a mac running Mojave. Thanks,
 

Califdan

Active Member
Joined
May 9, 2015
Messages
161
Lightroom Experience
Power User
if using Finder you can figure out which is the most desirable catalog (which may not be the most recent) double click on the catalog name (it's a file, probably in your "Pictures -> Lightroom" folder that ends in ".lrcat") and LR will open that catalog. If that catalog is from a prior version it will ask if you want to update it. If, however, the catalog is from a newer version of LR than the default version it will also give you warning message. However the message you describe is that you tried to open a catalog from an older version of LR that has already been upgraded to your newer version of LR. In this case it is probably best to let it "....use the newer, upgraded catalog instead".

LR does a somewhat poor job of naming catalogs (IMHO) as it typically just keeps adding "-2" and "-3" to the end of previous catalog names. and sometimes you wind up with something like "Lightroom Catalog-2-2" and there is no clue in the catalog name which version of LR that catalog is for. It would be nice if it always allowed the user to select their own catalog names, but that is not to be.

Anyway once you get a catalog opened that is the one you want, go to the "General" tab of "Catalog Settings" in the "Edit" (windows) or "Lightroom" (mac) menu and write down the catalog path and name. Then cancel that window and go to the "General" tab in the "Preferences" item of the same main menu. on this tab set the "default catalog" to the one whose name you wrote down. This will cause LR to always open that catalog as the default.

If you feel compelled to clean up the old catalogs, you can then close LR, and go to Finder or File Manager and navigate to the folder where LR keeps catalogs. Unless you changed it this is usually under "Pictures -> Lightroom". Once there move all the files folders for other catalogs to some other, out of the way folder someplace (maybe create a subfolder called "old catalogs". The files and folders you don't move are the ones that start with the catalog name. For example, if the desired catalog is "Lightroom Catalog-2-2" you would keep
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2.lrcat
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2 previews.lrdata
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2 helper.lrdata
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2 Smart Previews.lrdata
  • (any other file or folder starting with "Lightroom Catalog -2-2")
  • You should also keep "ElareMessages" folder if it is there
 

Diarmuid

New Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2017
Messages
7
Lightroom Experience
Beginner
Lightroom Version
Thank you so much or taking the time to reply to my message. All is well now, I just wish the naming convention for catalogs was a bit more straightforward.
 

Diarmuid

New Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2017
Messages
7
Lightroom Experience
Beginner
Lightroom Version
Now I've managed to sort things out I wonder whether I should change the location of my catalog now that I have found it and fixed the problem to prevent future confusion should something ever go wrong again. Currently it's located on the same external hard drive (called Our Passport) that holds all my photos. This is the file path:

Volumes/Our Passport/Lightroom Backups/2016-05-06 0822

Can I/Should I move this to the Pictures Lightroom folder? If so is there a foolproof way of doing this safely?
if using Finder you can figure out which is the most desirable catalog (which may not be the most recent) double click on the catalog name (it's a file, probably in your "Pictures -> Lightroom" folder that ends in ".lrcat") and LR will open that catalog. If that catalog is from a prior version it will ask if you want to update it. If, however, the catalog is from a newer version of LR than the default version it will also give you warning message. However the message you describe is that you tried to open a catalog from an older version of LR that has already been upgraded to your newer version of LR. In this case it is probably best to let it "....use the newer, upgraded catalog instead".

LR does a somewhat poor job of naming catalogs (IMHO) as it typically just keeps adding "-2" and "-3" to the end of previous catalog names. and sometimes you wind up with something like "Lightroom Catalog-2-2" and there is no clue in the catalog name which version of LR that catalog is for. It would be nice if it always allowed the user to select their own catalog names, but that is not to be.

Anyway once you get a catalog opened that is the one you want, go to the "General" tab of "Catalog Settings" in the "Edit" (windows) or "Lightroom" (mac) menu and write down the catalog path and name. Then cancel that window and go to the "General" tab in the "Preferences" item of the same main menu. on this tab set the "default catalog" to the one whose name you wrote down. This will cause LR to always open that catalog as the default.

If you feel compelled to clean up the old catalogs, you can then close LR, and go to Finder or File Manager and navigate to the folder where LR keeps catalogs. Unless you changed it this is usually under "Pictures -> Lightroom". Once there move all the files folders for other catalogs to some other, out of the way folder someplace (maybe create a subfolder called "old catalogs". The files and folders you don't move are the ones that start with the catalog name. For example, if the desired catalog is "Lightroom Catalog-2-2" you would keep
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2.lrcat
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2 previews.lrdata
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2 helper.lrdata
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2 Smart Previews.lrdata
  • (any other file or folder starting with "Lightroom Catalog -2-2")
  • You should also keep "ElareMessages" folder if it is there
Now I've managed to sort things out but wonder whether I should change the location of my catalog now that I have found it and fixed the problem to prevent future confusion should something ever go wrong again. Currently it's located on the same external hard drive (called Our Passport) that holds all my photos. This is the file path:

Volumes/Our Passport/Lightroom Backups/2016-05-06 0822

Can I/Should I move this to the Pictures Lightroom folder? If so is there a foolproof way of doing this safely?
 

I-See-Light

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 27, 2013
Messages
1,086
Location
Queensland
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Classic 8
Instructions here- How do I find and move or rename my catalog? | The Lightroom Queen

Basically, you use the operating system to move the catalog files like those shown by Califdan.
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2.lrcat
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2 previews.lrdata
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2 helper.lrdata
  • Lightroom Catalog -2-2 Smart Previews.lrdata
  • (any other file or folder starting with "Lightroom Catalog -2-2")
If you have ample room on your internal drive, that would be a choice location, as you suggest in Pictures/Lightroom/your catalog files.
The photo files can remain on the external drive.
You must start the Catalog in its new location by double-clicking the .LRCAT file and then resetting the Preferences to always open this catalog- again, as described by Califdan in Post#2.
 

Califdan

Active Member
Joined
May 9, 2015
Messages
161
Lightroom Experience
Power User
there are pro's and con's about leaving the catalog on your External drive (that's where I have mine) vs on your C: drive.

If on the 'C:' drive, performance is a smidge faster.

If on the External hard drive you can just move that drive to another computer that LR installed (like your laptop when you travel) and you've got your catalog and all your images.

As I said, I use LR with my desktop at home and my laptop when traveling so I keep that catalog on the external hard drive (MyPassport) with all my images.

Where ever you put it, I suggest having a folder under one called 'Lightroom" for each catalog (i.e. older LR release catalog). I also rename the catalog to include the LR version number it refers to. Here's a screen shot.

12381
 

Diarmuid

New Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2017
Messages
7
Lightroom Experience
Beginner
Lightroom Version
Thanks again. I just have a mac and an external hard drive (my passport). If I leave my catalog on the hard drive would it be wise to locate or duplicate the catalog backup some where else?
 

Califdan

Active Member
Joined
May 9, 2015
Messages
161
Lightroom Experience
Power User
If your catalog is on the external hard drive with your images, set your automatic LR backups (the ones LR takes when you exit) to go to the Internal hard drive on your Mac (unless you have another external drive for backup purposes).

Good idea to also backup the catalog, as well as all your images, from the external hard drive to some cloud location
 
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