Ok, trying not to panic. I have Photoshop Elements 10, mostly to just save pictures of my family etc. Well, I wanted to move my pictures to an external hard drive because it was taking up too much memory on my laptop (and to save them in case anything happened to my laptop). I guess I wasn't paying attention and when I moved them, I moved them as XML files. Needless to say, when I went to my external to open them, I was not able to. Also, when I tried to open them in photoshop to edit them, it said that the photo could not be found and I had to reconnect? I guess that means to put them back on my laptop? I don't know. I guess I copied them and didn't move them, that's why an image is in the Photoshop program, but I cannot "open" the image to edit it? So, can I change the file format on my external hard drive so I can open them? I'm not sure what to do. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
THis does not make any sense. An XML file is not a picture file. An XMP file is not a picture file, just the edits from a raw file.
So not sure what you are talking about. In addtion this is a Photoshop forum not Photoshop Elements forum, but for your question the answer would be the same.
Ok, you are now in the Photoshop Elements forum - someone must have moved this posting.
So that we can try to help, can you please tell us which operating system you are using.
As Curt Y said XML files are not image files - they are what we call sidecar files and should remain with the actual image files. If possible, I would try moving them back to their original position if you know it. The image files normally have the same name but with a different extension (jpg or nef say).
The real golden rule when using the organizer is not to move or rename images outside of the organizer because it will cause the missing file message.
If you can get back to square one, with all files connected, I would recommend taking a full dump of the catalog before you start moving files around. That way if something does go wrong you can recover.
Having taken a full dump, you can use the Move command in the organizer to move the images to the external drive. Alternatively, you could restore your dump to the new location on the external drive. If you did the restore, you would need to remove the images from the original location.
Please let us know how you are getting on.
I guess I copied them and didn't move them, that's why an image is in the Photoshop program, but I cannot "open" the image to edit it?
If you copied them and didn't move them, you would have a copy on your internal HD and a copy on your external HD and your files would be connected in Organizer.
So, given the symptoms you have, the best guess is that you moved the photos to the external HD, and didn't copy them. If that's the case, then move them back to the exact location where they were before, using your operating system. This should cause the photos to be connected again.
And then, as Little PaleFace says, from that point forward you only use PSE to move or rename your photos and the folders that contain them.
In any event, unless you did something accidentally when did the original move/copy, your photos are not lost. THey are one one or more of your hard disks, somewhere. It is up to you to find them.