Ok. I'm an idiot. Somehow, I managed to import regular files from my laptop (unrelated to photos) into the Folders section of PSE 11 Organizer. I can't explain exactly how I did it, but it started with a prompt about backing up my catalog files. I decided that I wanted to clean up my images saved on my laptop and from PSE, so I saved all photos to CD's and somewhere in that process, I did a save of all my laptop files. I'm sorry that I can't be fully more specific about how I did this. That being said, my question is this. If I go through every folder in the Organizer and delete that folder, will it affect its (assumed) place outside of the PSE software? Right now, it shows that I have 3500+ items that need to be backed up. Then I am prompted to reconnect missing files. In an effort to fix this, I deactivated my software and did a full reinstall. Still have the same issue. It seems to me that if I delete these extraneous files this should fix my problem. Would this be correct?
I'm not at all sure I follow your post, but if I do, you seem to be under a misapprehension about how PSE works. When you import photos already on your computer into the oroganizer, you are not making any extra copies of anything or moving anything. All the organizer does is make a database entry pointing to your photo where it already is. The one exception to this is if you use the "from iPhoto" command on a mac, in which case PSE does make copies of the images in the iphoto library.
It sounds to me like you have been mistakenly deleting your originals or thinking that organizer somehow put them someplace else. It doesn't.
That certainly makes sense; however, what the problem for me is that when I open Organizer, it prompts me to backup my catalog. When I accept, it attempts to locate or reconnect missing files...3500 of them dating from August 1997 to July 2013. My laptop was purchased brand new December 2012.
When I decided to look at the Folders tab just below the Albums tab, it opened a large list of sub folders. I happened to open one randomly and it "shows" 6 MP3 files of random demo-type songs. (I have no music stored on my laptop as it is brand new) Scrolling down the list, I see several folders of images that are current and correct but the other sub folders appear to be laptop/windows files that should have no association with PSE. I currently have approximately 150 images associated in PSE. Those are good. I have removed about 300 images from my laptop to CD's as I do not need them on my hard drive. What concerns me is how to delete the sub folders that are clearly not meant to be in PSE. I don't recall being able to right-click a folder and select "delete". Following up to that, if I delete a sub folder in PSE (ie: the music folder) am I deleting it from my hard drive or simply PSE? On the flip side of that coin, I have a file folder that says Clean 5x7. How do I know if it belongs in PSE? See how this has become a mess?
To that end, being assured that my images were safely stored, I attempted a full reinstall of PSE thinking that it would "forget" about my "saving/importing/associating" all the files and I would be at a brand new slate. When I proceeded with the deactivation, did it matter that I chose the option to remember my serial number? Since I still have this problem it seems that I did not fully uninstall.
Is this a little clearer for you to wade through? It feels like a nightmare for me. I really appreciate your trying to work through this.
Are trying to start a new catalog afresh?
Re-installing PSE will not touch the catalog.
If you want to start a new catalog, exit from elements (if running), hold down the shift key and then launch elements organizer again.
That should take you into the catalog manager where you can click on the New button an create a new catalog.
What operating system are you using?
Hi, no I'm not trying to create a new catalog. I'm just wanting to delete data-type folders in E11 located within the Folders tree that it is trying to find by prompting backing up and reconnecting. My concern is that I don't want to accidentally delete files that are a part / belong to Windows 8 (my OS) nor files that belong to E11.
I don't think this would have happened but for the fact that I am learning Windows 8 and locating files within this new system is not completely intuitive for me just yet. Therefore, my reasoning for reinstalling was to wipe out the Folders tree and bring E11 back to day 1 whereby I could recreate my catalogs in a much more efficient fashion. As I mentioned, this tactic didn't work. When I opened a folder that contained 6 sample mp3 files and tried to find a delete option, i couldnt find one. Perhaps there is another way to delete unwanted folders on the tree that I am not seeing?
Does this make better sense?
Hi, no I'm not trying to create a new catalog. I'm just wanting to delete data-type folders in E11 located within the Folders tree that it is trying to find by prompting backing up and reconnecting.
The message for 'backing up' is a totally independent matter and has nothing to do with Elements trying to find something.
Have a look at the 'edit/preference' menu, file section. The 4th item should mean 'automatically show a message warning to backup files and catalog'. Uncheck that option.
Now, about 'missing' files. As explained earlier, PSE does not store the files themselves, only their path (location) on your drive. If you have moved, deleted or renamed files outside of the organizer, via the explorer/finder, the reference to the location is now wrong. The organizer shows them as missing. That info is especially useful when you want to backup : obviously, 'missing' files can't be found and backed up.
Why the suggestion to create a new catalog ? Because this will 'import', that is reference all your picture files in the catalog database. You can then work safely within the organizer, not only to back up (if you wish so) or to organize via tags, albums and categories. You can even move pictures or folder trees from the organizer. With a fresh catalog, you can even forget and delete the former one. This deletes the 'list' of files, not the files themselves. You can delete a catalog from the catalog manager option in the file menu.
With a new catalog, you can choose from which folders you can 'import', that is reference picture files. You can import from picture folders only. If by error you import audio files, that's not a big problem. The organizer lets you delete those entries from the list without deleting the real files on the drive.
A note about the 'folder views' on the left of the screen : the default one is the 'My folders' view, it shows all your 'referenced' picture files sorted by the last subfolder in which they are.
The other 'Folder' view, which you access by clicking on the litlle yellow icon on the right of the 'My folders' title, shows you all referenced pictures in the real folder tree just like in the explorer/finder.
With the 'Folder' view, you can see where your pictures are in the folder tree.
What is important to understand is that the 'Folder' view lets you move, delete or rename the folders themselves. The catalog is then updated without problem. But those folders can contain other types of files than media files. So, unless you know
for sure there are only picture files in them, don't change the folders or subfolders themselves ; instead, select the picture items you want to change in the browsing space and move them by drag and drop.
Thank you, everyone, for replying with help solutions. Michael, your explanation was exactly how I needed to read it. Now I understand what everyone else was trying to show. :) I will follow directions and see where it gets me.
Now, I need to check and see if I can get my serial number reactivated for another machine since I uselessly burned one trying to fix my software! Wish me luck!