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Where are My "Develop" Settings?

dbruno720

New Member
Joined
May 18, 2019
Messages
10
Lightroom Version
5.7.1 Stand-alone
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Windows 7
Hi, Folks - I'm new here, and I have a long post, so please bear with me:

I am a part-time Event Photographer, working 6-8 events per month. I have been running a stand-alone version of Lightroom 5.7.1 (upgraded from the original version 5.2 through the on-line upgrade process), and I am reluctant at this point to sign up for Lightroom CC. I have been shooting with a Canon 6D for the past 3+ years, and all has been great. At the beginning of April, I upgraded to a Canon 5D MK IV, and this is where my issues began, as my version of Lightroom does not support the .CR2 format of the new camera. I did figure out a step to add to my RAW workflow – using the Adobe free CR2-DNG converter. I can the bring all those files into LR 5.7.1, and things were just fine.

My workflow is this: I shoot an event, create a folder on my hard drive, and import the RAW files into LR using a particular “catalog”. Every 3-4 months, I create a new catalog, as I had read having too many photos in one catalog can slow things down. I create a “Collection Set”, and then “collections” inside it with names like “doubles”, “reception”, “speaker 1”, etc. I then cull, pick the ones I will work on/develop for eventual delivery (white flag), reject the ones I will not (black flag). I then take a RAW file and “develop” it – color correct, exposure adjust, clarity, dodge and burn, etc. These are my “Develop” settings. After I’m satisfied, I export the photo to JPEG into a folder called “Deliverables”.
I can start up LR, open up a catalog, pick a collection, and ALL the Develop setting for each photo are there.

A few weeks ago, I did not leave well enough alone, and purchased a stand-alone LR version 6.5, with the hope of upgrading it to LR 6.7 (which will handle the 5D MK IV format) just as I did with my LR 5.2 upgrade to 5.7.1. I purchased it from a seller on EBay, after many messaging conversations. I have had GREAT luck buying things on EBay. The CD arrived in legit Adobe packaging, with a serial number. Unfortunately, the install did not go well. I tried to get it to run without un-installing LR 5.7.1, but the “read.me” file which came with the new disc advised an un-install. I did the un-install, but once again, the install of LR 6.5 did not work.

I re-installed LR 5.2, and with much pain, got it back to version 5.7.1. However, the catalogs I created were ALL GONE. The RAW files and the “Deliverables” for each event were there on the hard drive, but the catalogs, the “Collection Sets” and, most notably/sadly ALL the “Develop” setting were GONE.
I have conversed with a person on a Facebook group who seems very knowledgeable. He tells me I should have something called a “cab” file or a “.xmp” file that is associated with each RAW file, and that is where all the develop setting are. I have never seen either of these. But in a subsequent message, he talked with a really experienced LR person, and it turns out my version of LR did not split these develop settings out.

So now the question for me is where do the “Develop” settings reside for a particular RAW file? Is this even the right terminology? Do they reside in the “Catalogs”? Do they reside in the “Collection Set”? Is there a way to retrieve these? Obviously, a lot of work is put into making a “negative” (the RAW file) into a deliverable photo, and there are times that past clients will contact me for copies of a photo, maybe with increased resolution, different cropping, etc., and it would be great to not have to start from scratch.

I actually performed a “System Restore” on my computer to the time right before I un-installed LR 5.7.1, but it was to no avail. Nothing that I lost came back.

Can you give me any sort of advice on this? The advice I’m looking for is related to my continued use of the stand-alone product. I am VERY apprehensive about paying for the subscription service, as I have been hearing rumors about price increases.

Thank you - David
 
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They are always in the catalogue, a database file with the file extension *.lrcat.

Most of the information can be copied to xmp files, if you choose to save metadata back to the files. So that's an option, useful if you are going between systems or reimporting. But the key data is in the catalogue.

Forget the rumours of price increases. Adobe recently scared the shit out of everyone by testing a subscription service option that included lots of cloud storage, hiding the normal option. People didn't notice it was a different bundle, and thought there was a price rise. Not their fault - Adobe should have seen it coming.
 

dbruno720

New Member
Joined
May 18, 2019
Messages
10
Thank you. So, when I un-installed my LR 5.7.1, I'm assuming all the catalogs got wiped out with that operation?

Some people have told me that all the develop settings reside within the .DNG files, but I don't see anything like that.

Also, how would I save these settings to xmp files? Is that an option somewhere that I can choose? Where do these files go, are they saved in the same directory as the RAW files?

David
 
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Uninstalling the program is one thing, but the catalogues remain on your hard drive. Imagine you uninstalled Excel or Word. The programs would be gone, but the xls and doc files would still be there.

XMP metadata is either in a separate file (if the original is a raw file) or is inside the original if it's something like a DNG or TIF.

In LR, there is a menu command Metadata > Save Metadata to File. But I think this is irrelevant in your situation - you need to find the catalogue(s).
 

dbruno720

New Member
Joined
May 18, 2019
Messages
10
Thanks, I appreciate your comments.

Well I am then at a loss, because my catalogs that were created with my LR 5.7.1 program are nowhere to be found. I have looked everywhere for them. I would say I lost the develop setting for more than 100 events.

I keep hearing the settings are embedded in the RAW files, but I haven't got a clue as to how to recover any of that.
 
Joined
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Houston, TX USA
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The last develop settings CAN be in the header of a DNG file or a JPG file BUT only if you expressly tell LR to write the metadata there.
Have you made a search for all files with a *.lrcat extension. Unless you made the effort to delete these yourself using Windows explorer, then they are still somewhere on your disk drive. And then there are the backup files that LR makes. If you have been doing backup on exit, these backup copies should be present too.
 

dbruno720

New Member
Joined
May 18, 2019
Messages
10
Thank you. Yes, I have made many, many attempts to find my catalogs using the Windows search tool. I don't know if my next step is to bring the computer somewhere and have an expert try and retrieve them from the ones and zeroes in the bowels of the hard drive.

One thing that did happen, and I didn't think this was relevant to the situation: one of the LR 6.5 install attempts got me as far as the point where I was given a choice to start a "new" catalog, or "update" a previous catalog. I chose (unfortunately) to "update" a catalog named "Jan19". This catalog does appear when I search, but when I try to open it with LR 5.7, I get a message that the catalog is too new to be opened. I cannot find any other catalogs from the old install.

Also, 98% of the develop settings were from events where I was shooting my Canon 6D, so I never converted to .DNG. I do have some events where I had to convert because of the new camera. How would I find the develop settings in these files? The RAW files are on my computer. I have gone to one of the event folders, and imported the files to LR using "Add", because I really don't want to move them. When I click on an individual photo, the develop setting are all zeroed out.

David
 
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When you open Lightroom, what is shown under File > Open Recent ?
 

dbruno720

New Member
Joined
May 18, 2019
Messages
10
May19.lrcat - C:\Users\David\Pictures\Lightroom\May19
Lightroom 5 catalog.lrcat
May19.lrcat - C:\Users\David\Pictures\Lightroom\May19\Backups\2019-05-18 0832
Jan19.lrcat

May19 I created, Lightroom5catalog.lrcat is the one that comes with it.

The last one is the one that will not open with LR5, it was converted to LR6 when I tried the installation.
 

dbruno720

New Member
Joined
May 18, 2019
Messages
10
What are missing are the other catalogs I created with LR 5.7.1:

Dec17
Mar18
Jul18
Oct18
 

dbruno720

New Member
Joined
May 18, 2019
Messages
10
More wonderful news, more stuff is now missing. Under LR 5.7, I created some simple import presets. I had one for each of the lenses I own. Each preset had the lens profile, and a boost in Clarity, Saturation, and Vibrance. After re-installing LR 5.7, and finding all my catalogs gone, these presets were mysteriously still there. I worked two events last week, and these import presets were available. Today, I get home from an event, convert .CR2 to .DNG, open up LR to "add" the images, and all the presets are now gone. All my keywords are gone. The stuff I applied upon importing RAW files, gone. It was there, even after the re-install, but now gone. I'm really not understanding what is going on here any longer. All I know is that because I didn't feel like converting from .CR2 to .DNG, I effed up my LR stand-alone version which had been just fine.
 
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Hi dbruno, welcome to the forum! Sorry to hear you're having such a nightmare.

There's nothing about installing or uninstalling software that would have affected your catalogs, unless, of course, it was a pirated copy that you tried to install that wiped a whole bunch of stuff. That can't be ruled out.

one of the LR 6.5 install attempts got me as far as the point where I was given a choice to start a "new" catalog, or "update" a previous catalog. I chose (unfortunately) to "update" a catalog named "Jan19". This catalog does appear when I search, but when I try to open it with LR 5.7, I get a message that the catalog is too new to be opened. I cannot find any other catalogs from the old install.
That process would have created a copy of the catalog and upgraded the copy, so the original one should still be there next to it.

When was the last time you opened one of your much older catalogs? I'm not convinced their disappearance is related, but it might be worth looking through your backup drives.
 

dbruno720

New Member
Joined
May 18, 2019
Messages
10
Victoria - thanks for your message. I wish it were as easy as that. I am not a Computer Forensic Specialist. I am somewhat comfortable around computers, but not to the level that this has messed up my photographic life. I can assure you, without digging into the ones and zeros of the hard drive, and searching and digging the only ways I know of, I can assure you these older catalogs are Not. Here.

From the upgrade attempt that got me to the point of asking if I wanted to create or update an older catalog, I was left with two pieces:

Jan19.lrcat - which LR5.7.1 cannot open because it has been upgraded to the newer version
Jan19.lrcat-journal, and I have no idea what's in this.

Also, I have only been backing up my RAW files and the final photos delivered to clients, so going to my backup and finding the catalogs is not going to fly.

As far as it being a pirated copy, that remains to be seen. I conversed through messages with the person, and my EBay Radar, which is good, gave me the go-ahead to but this. What I did not want to believe was this version 6.5 could not be upgraded to 6.7 (in a similar way to how I was able to upgrade 5.2 to 5.7.1).

In any case, as I described above, other things are now happening that I cannot explain.

David
 
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Jan19.lrcat - which LR5.7.1 cannot open because it has been upgraded to the newer version
Jan19.lrcat-journal, and I have no idea what's in this.
lrcat-journal is a type of temporary file that lives alongside the lrcat file.

Also, I have only been backing up my RAW files and the final photos delivered to clients, so going to my backup and finding the catalogs is not going to fly.
Yikes, that's a costly lesson to learn. Sorry to hear that.
One of the paths you listed above (May19.lrcat - C:\Users\David\Pictures\Lightroom\May19\Backups\2019-05-18 0832) was from a backup folder. Are there other Lightroom-created backups in that same location perhaps?

As far as it being a pirated copy, that remains to be seen. I conversed through messages with the person, and my EBay Radar, which is good, gave me the go-ahead to but this. What I did not want to believe was this version 6.5 could not be upgraded to 6.7 (in a similar way to how I was able to upgrade 5.2 to 5.7.1).
If the serial number is legitimate, you can download and install Lightroom 6.14 (later than 6.7) from here: Download legacy versions of Creative Cloud apps That should also get you back into your catalog that LR5 says is too new. And if it's not, you can chase the guy for your money back.
 

dbruno720

New Member
Joined
May 18, 2019
Messages
10
Victoria - thank you for your responses. The backup catalog location is where I have been backing up the catalogs created since the implosion, so other that the generic "Lightroom5 catalog.lrcat", there are no other catalog backups. It's like everything got wiped clean with the un-install of 5.7.

I have yet to try what you have suggested with using the serial number to upgrade to 6.14. I would imagine the first step would be to go into my Adobe account, and register the product, then upgrade (I remember doing this for the other version).

Regards - David
 
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The upgrade process would allow you to register while installing.

The proper Lightroom uninstaller doesn't wipe catalog files though, or anything from your Pictures folder, for that matter, so that's not something an official Lightroom version could have done. There would have been an outcry when it was released in 2015 if that was the case.
 

LRList001

Active Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2012
Messages
308
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
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6.x / CC 2015.x
Victoria - thank you for your responses. The backup catalog location is where I have been backing up the catalogs created since the implosion, so other that the generic "Lightroom5 catalog.lrcat", there are no other catalog backups. It's like everything got wiped clean with the un-install of 5.7.

I have yet to try what you have suggested with using the serial number to upgrade to 6.14. I would imagine the first step would be to go into my Adobe account, and register the product, then upgrade (I remember doing this for the other version).

Regards - David
David, how are you searching for LR catalogues and backups? Windows is astonishingly bad at finding files that are certainly there, somewhere. Assuming a non-corrupted version of LR6 was installed, it would migrate your current LR 5 catalogue, leaving the LR5 catalogue behind as an untouched copy. Other advice here I can only reinforce, get a copy of LR6 (it will be 6.14) from the official Adobe site and install that using the licence key you were given to register it. LR6 is a superset of LR5, assuming you can get it all working, 6.14 is the last copy of LR you can run on the perpetual licence. I have forgotten what a LR 5 backup looks like, I think at te top level, the same as LR6, which is a folder with the date/time in the folder title. Mine sit in a folder called 'backups'. An example from today would be 2019-05-20 1902. Inside, (using LR6) is a zipped file, IIRC in LR5 the files are not zipped.

HTHs
 

dbruno720

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Joined
May 18, 2019
Messages
10
Well, I guess that's the issue, and in hindsight should have tried to register it before the install. I have the 24-digit serial number on the CD sleeve, but when I tried to register it on the Adobe website, I can't, and comes up with an error. I'm upset with myself on this, because I have never had a problem with anything I've purchased on EBay.

Also, I cannot find a spot on the site to purchase a stand-alone copy of LR6. When I try, it just send me to the subscription plan(s). I would imagine I would have to go through a legit place like B&H or Adorama. But at this point, I don't have the confidence to proceed with anything different than what I have now.
 
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Wow, so sorry to hear that. Legit places like B&H do still have proper boxed legitimate copies in stock by the looks of it. They're a big enough name to trust to be legitimate. AdobePhotoshop Lightroom 6 (DVD)
 
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Wow, so sorry to hear that. Legit places like B&H do still have proper boxed legitimate copies in stock by the looks of it. They're a big enough name to trust to be legitimate. AdobePhotoshop Lightroom 6 (DVD)
B&H Photo is one of the most reputable online stores in the US. Very competitive prices, excellent customer service. If you are ever in NYC, go to their physical store. It's an amazing sight, with the huge selection and the overhead racks for moving merchandise to the central payment point. Just not on Saturdays, when they are closed.

Phil Burton
 
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