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PSE 11 freezes when calculating total media size during a full backup

Nov 11, 2012 4:14 PM

Tags: #photoshop #size #elements #freezes #11 #full #media #backup #total #calculating

Like many other users on these boards, I am unable to complete a full backup of a particular catalog on my machine using PSE 11 (or PSE 10 for that matter). I have four catalogs on this machine and three of the four complete the full backup process without any problems. That last, non-cooperating, catalog is much larger (7,389 photographs) than the others, but I do not think that this would pose a problem.


Following other advice and guidance, I have removed all videos, audios, projects, PDFs, and audio captions (in other words, all media types other than photographs) from the catalog. The only files remaining are photographs (that is, JPG files). I attempt to complete a full backup and, when calculating the total media size, the PSE 11 application freezes at five to six percent. I have attempted this in PSE 10 as well, but with the same results. (I was hoping that the new release would fix the problem. No luck.)


The only other item of note is this, when I search for the various media types, I see the message "no media to be displayed" in the middle of the organizer window. However, when I search for video, I do not see the message--the organizer window is blank (no text message as seen for the other media types).


Lastly, I have reconnected all missing files. (None.) Optimized the catalog. Fixed errors in the catalog anyway. (None.)


Does anyone have any other ideas on how I can complete a full backup of this catalog? A large cash reward awaits... (kidding). Please advise. Thank you!

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    Nov 16, 2012 9:14 AM   in reply to stonegateuser

    Second on this post...thanks for writing all that down and posting stonegateuser, I didn't have it in me. I've followed all the advice/guidance on the forums, etc and PSE 11 still hangs when it hits 10%. Frankly, I've given up trying to tweak it and just use generic backup software. I'm guessing this won't be fixed until PSE12/13...

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    Nov 16, 2012 12:20 PM   in reply to the_lunger

    the_lunger wrote:


    I'm guessing this won't be fixed until PSE12/13...


    I believe that each new version will bring fixes for various causes of failure of the backup, but I very much doubt that even version 13 will totally fix the freeze of the backup.

    Apart from the commonly suggested options you have cited, there are probably many other ones leading to the same symptoms:

    - incorrect file names (for instance, 2 dots in the file name)

    - permissions on folders

    - disk space requirements

    - different ways in Editor or Organizer to deal with incorrect file names, or unsupported file types (Adobe incoherence ?)

    - some have reported cases when there has been errors in the database itself (most should have been 'repaired' using that function).


    There are freezes in the phase when the total media size is calculated. There are others at a given % of the backup for a given user and a given catalog. The later suggest offending files. In that case, the methodic search of the offending files generally finds the culprits. In that case, we can expect Adobe to fix the problem, but it is very important that all the causes are known and there is enough feedback about them.


    What is very important for any user is to be able to backup anyway:

    - the catalog

    - the media files


    Most users are aware that they can use other softwares to backup their media files. Some are integrated in the OS, others are simple like zip files or use free of affordable backup software, some use cloning, syncing...

    What surprises me is that a simple copy or automatic backup of the catalog folder is not cited more often.


    Of course, if you use another software to backup media and catalog, you should be safe in case of a crash. But the advantage of the integrated backup system in the Organizer is that it is the best way to migrate to other OS, drives, PSE versions. My obvious advice when your backup freeze is to find an alternative solution (generally available and free). Then, when you are safe, you can spend more time on finding what is wrong with your catalog.


    To try to understand where the process of backup can go wrong, let's see the different phases:

    1 - media size calculation

    2 - scanning all the files recorded in the database

              . for each one, create a backup copy with a file name of the type 'B0000001.ext', where 'ext' is the extension of the original file,

              . and update the catalog.tly file containing the link between the media internal identifier and the newly created copy

    3 - copy of the catalog itself


    So my question to Adobe is : what is so mysterious in part #2 ? Why is it not possible to issue a message showing the offending file ? and why not skip that file and issue a log file at the end ?

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    Dec 30, 2012 10:04 PM   in reply to stonegateuser

    Add me to the list of backup failures - my backup hangs at 58% of calculating media storage...

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    Dec 30, 2012 11:33 PM   in reply to cgloud314

    Since my last post, I have done some research to understand in which order the files are backed up, their copies being renamed etc.

    An sqlite utility lets us see the media_table in the catalog.psexxdb and order it in various sort orders.

    The catalog.tly containing the link between the original full path + filename and the backup copy of a file can be scanned in a text editor like wordpad.

    I have found that the backup order in PSE6 is based on the file name (filename_search_index), while that of PSE11 is based on the 'date taken' (search_date_begin).

    That could mean that a freeze at 97% in PSE11 is caused by a recent picture...

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    Aug 27, 2013 4:09 PM   in reply to stonegateuser

    Add me to the list of backup freeze ups.  My PSE 10 can't get past 28% and I have tried all of the suggested seaches for offending files without success.  I have given up and have started using Microsofts' Movie Maker and Photo Gallery.  Adios Adobe!

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    Jan 8, 2014 7:16 AM   in reply to stonegateuser

    Yes. I have just upgraded to PSE12 and have tried to backup my catalog. It stalls on 'Calculating total media size ...' Will not go beyond 46%.

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    Jan 8, 2014 8:59 AM   in reply to scubaron10

    scubaron10, thanks very much for giving a PSE12 update on this issue. I was contemplating buying the upgrade w/the hopes it solved the problem so you save me some $. Happy Holidays!

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    Mar 10, 2014 4:59 AM   in reply to MichelBParis

    I found that backing up with other software does not maintain the stacks, versions and albums. These are lost, even if I write the metadata to the files...that only keeps the tags, in my experience. PSE 12 doesn't fix the problem so no need to upgrade unless you want to for other reasons.


    I do have a solution that worked for me. There are quite a few steps but worth the effort if it also solves your problem.


    The main culpret in my case were "Locked / Read Only" files. Since I did several things simultaneously, I may have had video file issues as well.


    Here is what worked for me:


    A. First: Save your "Meta Data to Files".

    1. On the Organizer Main Screen click "File" -- "Save Metadata To Files"



    B. You can have Adobe find files that it doesn't like by having it search your "Pictures" directory.


    1. On the Organizer Main Screen click "File" -- "Get Photos and Videos" -- "By Searching".

    2. Find your "Pictures" directory in the "Look in" drop down box & click on it.

    3. Click "Search"

    4. When the "Search results" are complete, click "Select All" -- "Import Folders".

    5. A "Getting Media" dialog box shows the results.

    6. Click the "Reason" header to sort the results.

    7. Scroll down to display any errors that Adobe finds.

    8. Make note of the "path" and "file name" under the "File" header.

    9. Use Windows Explorer to find and fix the issue(s). Look for "Read Only", "Locked", "Archived" or "Hidden" files and change the attribute. I believe that these are part of the problem.

    10. Check for non-picture or video files that Adobe can't handle and move or delete the offending files.

    Note: I have files with these extentions and they work: AVI, BMP, CR2, GIF, JPG, MTS, MOV, PDF, PNG & TIF.

    Note: I had: ZIP, TGA, SHS & PPT files that I moved or deleted. Adobe shouldn't import files it can't handle, but I removed them just to be sure.

    11. Try your backup again.


    C. If the above doesn't work you can narrow down the issue by trying to back up the database selectively by Photos, Video, Audio, Projects or PDF.


    Note: Many people believe that "Video" is the culpret, so I suggest that you rule that out first by removing your Video files from your catalog. This does not delete them from the hard drive. They can be added back into the catalog but there may be some loss of information for Stacks, Versions or Albums so remove Photos from the catalog as a last resort .

    1. On the Organizer Main Screen click "File" -- "Manage Catalogs".

    2. Click "Current Catalog".

    3. Click "Repair" in "Catalog Manager"

    4. Click the check box "Reindex Visual Similarity Data".

    5. Click "Repair Anyway".

    6. When complete, click "Optimize" in "Catalog Manager".

    7. Click "Cancel" in "Catalog Manager".

    8. On the Organizer Main Screen click "View" -- "Media Types".

    9. Uncheck all but the "Video" option.

    Note: "Photos", "Audio", "Projects" & "PDF" will be unchecked and you will only see "Video" files displayed.

    10. Click "Edit" -- "Select All"

    Note: Be cautious during the next few steps.

    11. Click "Edit" -- "Delete from Catalog".

    12. Caution! - DO NOT click the "Also Delete The Selected Items From The Hard Disk" check box.

    Note: You don't want to delete the video files from the hard disk you only want to remove them from the catalog.

    13. Click "File" -- "Backup Catalog" and complete the backup to the desired location.

    Note: You may have to resolve some missing file(s) issues

    Note: Hopefully you now have a backup of all your photos.

    14. Assuming that this was successful, you then know that video files are the culprets and have to go digging. You can selectively add them back by type.

    15. If not successful, you will have to selectively add (rescan) or remove (as above) the media types until you find the one(s) that created the issue. Remove "Photos" last to avoid information loss.


    Good Luck!



    Message was edited by: 205EdMLewis

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    Mar 10, 2014 8:09 AM   in reply to stonegateuser

    Good to know I'm not the only one out there with this issue.  Although I'm manageing considerably more images - same end result.  Did you upgrade to PS12? Did it correct the problem?

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    Mar 10, 2014 9:59 AM   in reply to Dominic 12

    I no longer have this issue. What I did, outlined above in #8, solved it for me. PSE 12 doesn't solve the problem either. From what I read on one of the forums, there is over 1,000 people who have this issue. Happily, I am no longer one of them. My 16,301 photos are now backed up.

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    Mar 15, 2014 3:03 PM   in reply to 205EdMLewis



    Thank you for help

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    Mar 16, 2014 7:48 AM   in reply to Dominic 12

    Add me to the ever growing list.  As suggested, I removed the video files and works.


    Wow - you would think Adobe might see this problem and fix it.  Maybe we can hope for a fix in 13!



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