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Using metadata/XMP files - where did I go wrong?

LRList001

Active Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2012
Messages
282
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
6.x / CC 2015.x
#1
I must be doing something really obvious wrong, but I can't see it for looking. LR6.14, Windows 10.

I wanted to save the develop history of an image in an XMP sidecar, so exported the metadata (in develop, and yes an xmp sidecar was created next to the source raw file).
As this was an experiment, I removed the image from the catalogue (keeping the original raw file) and then re-imported it (with a bunch of others not relevant to this post).
My import workflow has certain actions, presets are applied etc. using auto sync. I let all that happen and finish. (I do not apply a preset actually at import, I use none, I am referring to my manual workflow steps straight afer an import.) (As this was an import from a camera not mine, it isn't calibrated, my cameras are, based on serial number, but hence the 'none'.)
Now I went to the image I am interested in, switched to Develop and imported the metadata file saved at the beginning.
After a warning that this action can't be undone, I ended up with an image that had been 'reset'. I was expecting to end up with the identical image to the one I started with (albeit with a different develop history), but I was expecting the sliders to be where I had put them before exporting the metadata.

Where have I gone wrong?

TIA.
 

LRList001

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Dec 23, 2012
Messages
282
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Lightroom Version
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#3
Sidecar files do not contain the history, only the current settings.
Completely missed my point. Why are the sliders all in the 'reset' position? I was expecting the sliders to be where I had put them, but they are not.
BTW, I specifically noted that the history would be different in the OP, quote "albeit with a different develop history ".
 

PhilBurton

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#4
Completely missed my point. Why are the sliders all in the 'reset' position? I was expecting the sliders to be where I had put them, but they are not.
BTW, I specifically noted that the history would be different in the OP, quote "albeit with a different develop history ".
Can I suggest that you repost your question, but omitting references to the develop history (per Johan's message). Just focus on (1) develop steps, (2) export XMP, and (3) reimport image with the XMP. (4) resulting with slider settings.
 

Jim Wilde

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#5
Completely missed my point.
What are we supposed to think when you start the problem description with "I wanted to save the develop history of an image in an XMP sidecar"?

However, now that it's been established that you actually meant something a little bit different, we can focus on that. To do that you need to clarify the steps that you took, specifically when you re-imported the raw file did you import it from the original hard drive location, or from the camera? If the former, then all the saved edits should have been applied immediately at import, thus there would be no reason/need to force read the metadata from the sidecar file. If the latter, did you copy the file to the same location as the original, in which case the filename would have the "-2" suffix, which would invalidate the XMP sidecar file (unless you renamed it). If you copied it to a different location, did you then copy the original XMP sidecar file to the same folder as the second import before doing the forced metadata read?

Until these questions are answered, I can't definitively say why your experiment hasn't worked out. If done properly, it should have worked.
 

LRList001

Active Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2012
Messages
282
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
6.x / CC 2015.x
#6
What are we supposed to think when you start the problem description with "I wanted to save the develop history of an image in an XMP sidecar"?

However, now that it's been established that you actually meant something a little bit different, we can focus on that. To do that you need to clarify the steps that you took, specifically when you re-imported the raw file did you import it from the original hard drive location, or from the camera? If the former, then all the saved edits should have been applied immediately at import, thus there would be no reason/need to force read the metadata from the sidecar file. If the latter, did you copy the file to the same location as the original, in which case the filename would have the "-2" suffix, which would invalidate the XMP sidecar file (unless you renamed it). If you copied it to a different location, did you then copy the original XMP sidecar file to the same folder as the second import before doing the forced metadata read?

Until these questions are answered, I can't definitively say why your experiment hasn't worked out. If done properly, it should have worked.
Interesting and thanks Jim.

I did not delete, change, move or alter the original raw file in any way at all. It remained in the exact same position in the file system. I did not refer back to the camera. However, as I wasn't 100% certain that LR would not delete the xmp when I removed the raw file from the catalogue, I did move the xmp to a 'safe' location. I then re-imported the original, unchanged not moved raw file (with a bunch of others in the same import). I ran my usual workflow on import.
I then put the xmp back into the original location (ie next to the master raw file) and instructed LR to import the metadata.
At this point the (automated) edits that had happened to that image were reset. Ie, the sliders were put into their default locations (for the most part this means middle.) (This is probably correct initial behaviour in that the import of the XMP probably starts by doing a 'reset'. Makes sense.)
I was expecting to end up with the sliders in the positions they had been at the point that I exported the xmp, which was not in the default positions. I wished to restore the result of the edits that I had carried out on that one image. I agree that the actual history is not germane. Instead of 'develop history' perhaps I meant 'develop outcome' or 'develop results'.

Being mystified by this behaviour, I posted here to see what is supposed to happen, as it seems a bit odd to me. If accurate, it also renders the use of sidecar xmp files 100% useless if they are considered to be a reliable backup of the edits carried out.

Hope it is now clear as to what I tried to do and why I have raised a query here.

However, looking at your last note: "If done properly, it should have worked" does answer my question.

Unfortunatley, I have deleted the xmp and emptied the recycle bin items folder, so I don't think I can get the xmp back. I'll have a look. Confirmed. It has gone.
 
Last edited:

LRList001

Active Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2012
Messages
282
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
6.x / CC 2015.x
#7
Now I know what is supposed to happen, I have tried two different ways of doing this and both have worked, though neither were tested in my main catalogue.

Current conclusion:
Either I pressed the wrong keys (I don't see how that is possible, as it is a simple enough export/import process)
Or the exact workflow I followed has a bug in it that is non-trivial to replicate.

Thanks for your help.
 

LRList001

Active Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2012
Messages
282
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
6.x / CC 2015.x
#8
Humm
I'm not certain, but it is very likely that I imported the xmp while LR was still running the import (certainly still building the 1:1 previews) and before LR had finished applying the develop presets to the full set of imported raw files (the three dots).
Thus, this could be a simple timing issue. I'll leave LR to complete the import and my 'on import' workflow actions next time.
 
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