I probably already know the answer to this, but I can't find anything here, and searching online gives conflicting info.
Recently I imported some DNG files from another catalog back into my primary catalog and specifically replaced the original DNG files with those that came from the imported catalog.
In my images folders(s) are IMG_xxxx.dng.lrbak files. I assume these are nothing but backups of the original files and that it's safe to delete them.
I also can't find any checkbox anytwhere that controls the creation of them. I don't recall seeing a checkbox for this either on the catalog import diaglog either.
(LR version is 4.1 on Windows 7)
They are temporary files that should have been deleted unless something didn’t work correctly during the updating of the non-lrback version of each file.
Theoretically it should be ok to delete them but since LR wasn’t able to, itself, it might be wise to move them to somewhere else until you’re comfortable things are ok with the newer ones, and also make sure you have the non-lrbak of each of file, first.
If every DNG you had imported from the other catalog has a duplicated LRBAK file then perhaps LR has a bug, and finding a simple process to replicate the error might be useful to Adobe so they can correct the issue.
Yes, this is repeatable. The .lrbak files are duplicated for every dng file that got replaced.
You can try to replicate the steps and see if you get the same:
1) select several photos, export as a catalog, include the negative files
2) import the catalog into LR on another computer (computer 2). Make some obvious changes to the files so you know they've been replaced when you bring them back to computer 1.
3) on this second computer, select those photos and export to another catalog, include the negative files
4) on computer 1, import the the catalog you just created on the 2nd computer. Make sure you have the option to "replace metadata, negative files, (...et al)" chosen.
5 import the catalog, the modified files should now copy in and you should see the obvious changes in the grid view. If you had "create a viirtual copy of the original" chosen, you'll see it stacked with the change(s)
Look in the folder where the dng files reside and see if you have matching dng.lrbak files.
Oddly, no, I can't replicate it on a single machine.
Using the same steps, I exported the catalog with negative files. Opened that new catalog, modified the file, created a new catalog with modified file. Opened the original catalog, imported the modifed catalog importing the negative file. The change was reflected in the grid view, but there was no dng.lrbak file left behind.
I don't understad why there would be a permissions issue. But if you can delve further into why you think this would be the case, I'm listening.
Alternatly, I can just delete the lrbak files when I see this happen.
A permissions problem could arise if the user on the current computer does not have full permissions to the file so LR cannot delete it (or at least thinks it cannot delete it)—for example files copied from the other computer might be readonly or have read/write but not delete permissions. The mechanism for moving the images and catalogs between computers was not described, so some questions are in order: do the catalog and/or images reside on an external drive that you move from one computer to the other, or are you connecting across a network share from one computer to another, and is this connection via a UNC path ( \\ server \ share ) or is there a drive-letter that might mask the server-share? Do the files get transferred/opened from within LR or are you using an Explorer drag-and-drop/copy-paste or DOS COPY or XCOPY to transfer the files? And if you are connecting via the network, are you using the same user on both computer, and are you using a domain-account or is this a simple workstation-type setup at home? Are you using the same user on both computers and do those users have the same permissions and are they both Administrator users on each computer.
If it is a permissions issue then not being able to replicate it on the local computer makes sense because you’re using the same user with the same file-system in both databases; however, there is another possible scenario that could cause the problem that might also be different between computers compared to on the same one at least as far as you’ve tested things: is the path to the image in the LR database the same on both computers when there are two computers but different on the single computer, and if the paths are different, is the drive-letter the only thing that is different between the two computers? I am suspicious that LR might have an inconsistency in handling the create-copy/rename/delete-old-version that it would use when the path is the same or almost the same compared to if the path is different.
The method of moving the files should not have caused any permission issues, but here is how I did it:
The two computers in different locations both use Dropbox. On computer 1, I export the catalog & negative files to the Dropbox folder, where it appears on computer 2. Then, on computer 2, I do a catalog import from that Dropbox folder, moving the files to new locations.
I then do the editing on the negative files. No changes happen to the files in the Dropbox folder that came from computer 1.
When I finish the editing, I export a second catalog onto that same Dropbox folder under a different name, including the negative files. This folder then shows up on computer 1.
From computer 1, I do the catalog import on the second catalog (which contains the edited changes), telling LR to replace the negative files/metadata/develop settings. The changed files copy in. What's odd though is the ORIGINAL files files on computer 1 are the ones that end up as the dng.lrbak files. You would think if there were permission issues, it would be with the files coming from another place, not the original ones which I have ownership to.
I have never had permission issues moving files around using Dropbox. The files on each computer are considered "owned" by that computer and Dropbox just makes sure multiple copies on however many remote computers you link together stay identical (in sync).
Today I'm trying a slightly different approach. Today I created the exported catalog from computer 1 on a flash drive. I won't import this catalog on computer 2, I'll open it and edit it directly, leaving all the files on the flash drive. Performance will I'm sure be slow since all reads/writes are going to be on the flash drive. When I get home tonight, I'll import this catalog back to computer 2 and see if the same thing happens. Since the two computers are in different locations, I won't be performing the import back to computer 1 until I get home this evening, so I won't know the results of this experiment until then.
When you tested on the same computer and didn’t have the issue, did you use the local computer’s DropBox folder as the Export destination and the Import source location, or just another regular folder on the computer? It’s possible that DropBox is synchronizing (reading-from and perhaps locking) the files as they are being imported and that is confusing Lightroom. I don’t use DropBox in this way to know how well it stays out-of-the-way if you are actively using the files. A way to avoid DropBox and LR both touching the files at the same time, you could use Explorer to move the catalog and DNGs to another local folder outside of the DropBox structure before using that new location as the source of the import.
To be able to import the new DNGs are you having to open the catalog that resides within the DropBox folder(s) and do an Update Folder Location to rebind the DNGs to the DropBox local path on the computer before importing, or do you have an identical DropBox path on each computer so that shouldn’t be necessary?
And a question about your method in general, why do you have to put the DNGs into the DropBox folder on the way back since they already exist at the original location? Can’t you just import the catalog and update the metadata and previews rather than replacing the DNG files, or are some of the DNGs new from the other computer and it’s easier to not care which ones already exist and which ones are new? I only use exported catalogs for archival purposes and open those catalogs directly if I need to find an old image, so I’ve never imported from an exported catalog to know if my question even makes sense.
When I tested on the same computer I did not use the dropbox folder. I used a regular folder, one created under "My Documents", so perhaps it wasn't an apples-to-apples test.
The dropbox paths are identical on both computers. Dropbox creates a common folder structure on all machines that are synced.
My method. Well, my method may be wrong, or seem odd, or have excess steps, as I'm learning to do this. I thought about it and you're right, I don't need to create the second set of DNGs when I'm sending back. Similar to how I edited the DNGs that were on the flash drive. I never took them off the flash drive, just let LR edit them at that location. I can do the same with Dropbox by just telling LR to open the catalog at the Dropbox location, and not import that catalog. During the editing period I can pause the syncing so there isn't constant Internet activity in trying to keep the constant changes going on in the Dropbox folder from the editing. When I finish editing, I can just turn the sync back on, and the changes will then be reflected back to computer 1, and then just import those changes back on computer 1.
I've already performed some edits on those afore mentioned files on the flash drive by just opening the catalog on the flash drive. Loading and editing performance was slow, as expected, and tonight I'll import those back and see if I get lrbak files or not. Then I'll try the experiment using Dropbox in the manner I previously described.
The whole point of this is to be able to take a few files to another machine, edit them there, then bring them back to the first machine without loosing the develop history trail. Initially I just copied the DNG files, edited them on machine 2, and copied them back to machine 1. On machine 1 I would get the metadata mismatch warning, and I'd tell LR to take the metadata from the DNG and update the database. The problem I found was that the history steps done on computer 2 were missing, and the history shown after the metadata update on machine 1 simply said "from Metadata" and not the actual develop steps. The edits were all there, but I couldn't undo them individually, I could only undo the entire group of edits done when the file went to the 2nd machine (basically stepping back over the "From Metadata"). I knew there had to be a way to preserve the history, and that when I tried exporting/importing catalogs that included the files, and found it did what I wanted.
The structure BENEATH the Dropbox folder would be the same, yes. I am asking about the physical path ABOVE the Dropbox folder—C:\Users\username\Documents\My Dropbox is the native root on my computer where the usernames being different would be something. Lightroom has to know the entire absolute path to each photo not just the path under the root folder that you see within Lightroom.
I understand why exporting and importing the catalog is important for having all history states available, my quibble was why do you need to copy the DNGs back since that is a lot of data and leads to overwriting your existing DNGs which aren’t any different than those from the far side except they might have newer embedded previews or a newer metadata snapshot.
I would be a little nervous putting the main LR database under the DropBox folder structure even if you turn the sync off, because if you ever forgot and somehow DropBox thought the remote location was newer it could overwrite your newer edits with the older database. You may have more of a comfort level with doing this.
If you are really curious what is happening to a particular DNG file, you can use Microsoft SysInternals Process Monitor to show LR’s file-system activity, including any failed operations. There is an enormous amount of data continuously collected so filtering to only the Lightroom and DropBox processes as well as dropping filtered (non-displayed) events is probably necessary.
The "username" name on each computer is different.
I am bringing the DNGs back because they are updated. I keep the XMP data inside the files, so when edited on machine two, they need to come back to machine 1.
My main LR catalog is not on the Dropbox folder. The catalog on the Dropbox folder was the catalog exported from the main one and anywhere from 1 to 5 negatives files with it. My main catalog file resides on a data drive and is kept well backed up.
Thanks for the link to sysinternals.
I've only quickly skimmed the conversation that's gone on since my last post, but I just wanted to say I wouldn't rule out the permissions on the Dropbox files. I've had a recent InDesign crashing bug, which ended up being traced back to folder permissions on one of the parent dropbox folders.
You do not have to copy the remote DNGs back to the main computer to have your main computer DNGS updated with the current edits is all I’m trying to say: After you import the temporary catalog from machine 2 back into the main one on machine 1, the current edits will be in your main LR catalog, where you can just select the DNGs that were edited on the remote computer and use the Update DNG Previews and Metadata (or whatever the menu command is called) to push the current edits from the database into those DNGs without having to also copy the actual DNG files from the remote computer, right? LR contains the master copy of the edits so it is sufficient to update the main computer DNGs’ metadata from the LR database.
And otherwise, I am still trying to understand how LR has the right paths to the photos in the little catalog you sync via DropBox. Referring to steps 2 and 3 in your first reply to my first reply, what is the FULL PATH (driver-letter to DNG extension) to the exported negative files on the remote computer and what is the FULL PATH to the newer-copy of the DNGs in their temporary location on the main computer BEFORE you import them into the main LR database and folder structure?
For reference, here are the two steps I’m referring to:
3) on this second computer, select those photos and export to another catalog, include the negative files
4) on computer 1, import the catalog you just created on the 2nd computer. Make sure you have the option to "replace metadata, negative files, (...et al)" chosen.
My theory as to what could be wrong is that the path to the exported DNGs on the remote computer which is what is stored in the little exported database, is not identical to the path of the import-source for the DNGs on the main computer when you’ve synced them back to the main computer before importing, and so LR is confused about what it is doing. The additional details of what the full paths should help validate or invalidate the theory.
On machine 1:
On machine 2 the path is identical. My user name is "Jeff" on both machines.
"boats" in this case was the name of one of several of these exchanges I made, with a unique name each time. The path would be similar with only the name "boats" and the date "06-23" being different. When I created the second catalog (whether necessary or not) for the purpose of going back to machine 1, it was called in this example "boats2".
Remember for the purposes of the original discussion, LR was instructed to import the catalog in the dropbox path on machine 2 into the main catalog on machine 2, leaving the files in the dropbox folder alone (simply copying them). The edits were then done on copies made in the main database. Extra steps perhaps brought about from inexperience.
I know, this is all very confusing.
Remember too that I am carrying a flash drive in my pocket whose files were edited earlier by opening the lrcat file on the flash drive and changing the XMP data of the negative files on the flash drive. I will import these files back into machine 1 in a few hours and see if any lrbak files are created.
Your point about not having to bring the files back, but only the data contained within the little catalog is a valid one. I'll have to try that. Perhaps since I have the writing to XMP set to on/automatic, the catalog import without the files will cause the files to be updated as the catalog data is imported.
Ok, I see you’ve used the Advanced DropBox configuration and constructed your folders to be consistent across your two computers. When in reply 10 you said you had different users on each computer that made me think the paths above the Dropbox root were different and using the Typical or Default settings that would be the situation. I’ve had DropBox for so long I’m not sure if there even was a way to specify exactly where the DropBox folders would be, to create a consistent path on each computer, or maybe I just chose the default location which is different if the logged-in user is different.
About the only thing I can think of is that the casing of the paths or the drive-letter is somehow different between the two DropBox folder structures and so LR thinks they are different in some areas and the same in other areas—there have been bugs with this sort of thing in the past because on a Mac the casing of the paths does matter, whereas on Windows it doesn’t, and some of the Mac logic got into the Windows file-handling areas. Maybe ProcMon can ferret this out.
In light of what Victoria said, though, it might be worth checking the effective permissions to your current user of the folder under the DropBox root that contains the DNGs that seemed to not work, checking these permissions on both computers. You can check permissions using Right-click / Properties / Security, etc. Are both computers workgroup computers or domain computers or does one reside on a domain-controller account and one is a home computer without such security?
Importing the catalog from the flash drive also caused the same issue. Lrbak files were created for the negative files that were updated. for each IMGxxxx.dng there was a matching IMG_xxx.dng.lrbak.
Not sure what to make of this.
In this instance the files were "touched" by the other computer. The catalog and files were opened by the other computer (2) on the flash drive, then the flash drive plugged back into computer 1.
I have not tried doing this and keeping the files all one one computer.
I'm trying something different this morning, and I'll report back the findings as soon as I know them.
Well, here's a new twist. No LRBAK files were created in this scenario:
Export catalog to shared Dropbox folder on computer 1.
On computer 2, after all files arrive, pause syncing.
Open LR on computer 2, open catalog in shared Dropbox folder. Note: open catalog, not import.
Perform edits. Close LR on computer 2when editing complete.
When all files sync and are up to date on computer 1, open LR.
Import from Catalog, specifying catalog in Dropbox shared folder.
LR reports some of the files changed (those edited on computer 2), perform import as I have done all along, specifying to updata metadata, develop settings, etc.
Changes import and are shown in grid.
No LRBAK files created.
Presumably you imported the actual DNG files (unlike my advice to leave them alone), since that is the only thing that would cause the DNGs to be replaced in the way that was causing LRBAK files to be created.
Maybe there is a casing difference somewhere in the path when you Export on the remote computer that doesn’t happen if you just use the catalog as is.