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    FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog

    vdotmatrix Community Member

      In Scott's Kelby's Book LR3 on page 88 step 6, he talks about 3 options for importing a catalog.....

       

      In particular he talks about option#3 and says he has NO IDEA wy anyone would choose that option of importing without the images.

       

      SENARIO: I just switch to MAC. All my work for years was on Windows PC including LR and CS4 design premium. So now when I go to work on images in the same location on THAT windows hard drive I get the message that I cannot do JACk with those images because they are associated with another catalog.

       

      I can't even click on the "?" in LR4 to find them without the same message coming up.

       

      I was thinking of firing up the old Windows Box, somehow finding all the images through LR3 and then using option #3 to import all 10,000 images or at least their locations to my new shiny Mac system(s).

       

      Objective: I am trying to access the images on an EXT. HD that gives me the "files are assiciated with another catalog message".

       

      Windering if importing that catalogue would help?

       

      IS THERE A WAY TO DISASSOCIATED A CATALOGUE FROM AN IMAGE?

        • 1. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
          dj_paige Community Member

          Step 1: Ignore everything Kelby says about the Library Module.

           

          Step 2: Please tell us exactly the steps you followed to get yourself into the current situation. "I just switch to Mac" isn't really an explanation of how you got there. Please give us details so we can help you. Also, please quote the exact error message that you are getting. Thanks.

           

          Step 3: Every time you think of re-importing an image into Lightroom ... tell yourself that re-importing is a terrible idea. And then, don't re-import.

          • 2. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
            vdotmatrix Community Member

            thanks for the look-see.

             

            #2: I bought a mac book pro and a Mac Mini. switched everything to Mac flavor and am trying to have the same access to all my images files.

            • I hooked the ext. HD to the Mac mini.
            • opened LR4.1
            • selected ALL PICTURES ~12,000 images
            • picked one with a "?" I went to year, folder, day, file.
            • dialogue box asking if i want LR to find the image and i say yes please
            • I get the following message: "each file can only be associated with one photo"

             

            That is where I am at this point: STUCK.

            • 3. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
              dj_paige Community Member

              So, please fill in a few more details

               

              1. The catalog file and all photos were on the ext. HD? Yes or no?

               

              2. I don't understand the phrase "picked one with a "?" I went to year, folder, day, file". Please explain this further, especially the part "I went to ..."

               

              3. Are you sure that you have quoted the error message exactly? The words you quote seem meaningless to me

              • 4. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                vdotmatrix Community Member

                1. The catalog file and all photos were on the ext. HD? Yes or no? NO

                 

                2. I don't understand the phrase "picked one with a "?" I went to year, folder, day, file". Please explain this further, especially the part "I went to ..."

                 

                IF YOU OPEN LR'S LIBRARY MODULE AND CHOOSE ALL PICTURES AT THE TOP, you will see ALL your images if you are lucky and have done all your homework. If you have moved stuff around outside of LR then you will have a blank placeholder for each image LR cannot find and it will also have a "?" (a question mark in that frame); you've never seen this before? When one clicks the "?" (question mark, a dialogue box opens and tells you of the last know location...i go there; mine are arranged by year, month and day and file which is irrelevant; i go to the location whereever it is.

                 

                3. Are you sure that you have quoted the error message exactly? The words you quote seem meaningless to me: the message is this: "each file can only be associated with one photo"

                 

                thanks

                • 5. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                  dj_paige Community Member

                  Well, I have been asking for details about what you did, and you now are saying you don't have the catalog file and photos on the external HD. How did you get your catalog file to the new Mac? Where is the catalog file?

                   

                  Now earlier you said "selected ALL PICTURES ~12,000 images" and then you clicked on the question mark. What happens if you select only one photo and click on the question mark? Do you get the same ERROR message or not?

                  • 6. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                    vdotmatrix Community Member

                    Hmmmmm.

                     

                    I transferred the contents of the windows computer to the MAC.

                    In the pictures directory on the MAC is where the LR folder is located. ( this could be the/a problem) I didn't import from WINDOWS. hmmm.

                     

                    I can only select one "?" at a time and yes I get the same error. and I suspect i am getting this error because I din't import the blasted LR catalogue to the MAC from WINDOWS.

                     

                    So now what do I do?

                    • 7. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                      dj_paige Community Member

                      I don't think there's a need to import a catalog if you have a working catalog from Windows.

                       

                      To tell you the truth, I'm stumped at this point. Everything I can think of is a long-shot, and doesn't really match the symptoms you stated.

                       

                      So, I give you one long-shot, and hope that someone else has a good thought. The long-shot is make sure your catalog file is in a folder where you have write permission.

                      • 8. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                        john beardsworth MVP

                        Select just one file, click its question mark and try to link it to the original. If you can produce the "each file can only be associated with one photo", then we've got a file we can work on.

                         

                        With it alone selected, go to All Photographs and sort the catalogue by capture time. Ensure no filters are active. What I suspect is that you will then see duplicate thumbnails for this picture, one with no question mark and others missing - that's what the message generally means.There could be other things happening, but focus on just one picture for now. Once we're sure what's happening to it, the rest will probably be easier to solve.

                        • 9. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                          john beardsworth MVP

                          And follow up this one file in Finder too.

                          • 10. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                            vdotmatrix Community Member

                            Thanks JOhn...Look but what if I simply moved the picture folder( that also contains the LR folder) from the old computer (windows) to the MAC without doing the import/export catalogue process?

                             

                            Could this be causing all my grief? I am the admin., lord and master of the computer(s) LOL!

                             

                            JOhn , I only click one file...with the "?" and I DO link back to the original, but no matter what happens I still get that message.

                             

                            I will return to ALL PHOTOGRAPHS and do as you suggest and will report back....  This must be pretty bad if you guys can't figure it out......

                             

                            Thanks, I am diving back in...

                             

                            v.

                            • 11. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                              john beardsworth MVP

                              Part of the problem is that we can't see and can't have the eureka moment when it's all obvious. There's also uncertainty about "each file can only be associated with one photo" and "files are associated with another catalog".

                               

                              Anyway, If you have simply copied the old computer's pictures folder over , and have opened the lrcat file on the Mac, that should be good. I would expect that the lrcat opened on Mac would not initially understand the exact folder path for your images, so you would see question marks on the folders. Normally you would click these folder question marks, rather than those on the pictures.

                               

                              You've done (generally) the right thing in not importing/exporting. Also don't be tempted to use Synchronise to try to get yourself out of trouble - it usually doubles it!

                               

                              Also, are you still at the point where we could say, wipe the Mac and do the whole transfer over again? Be 100% certain your backups are solid.

                              • 12. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                vdotmatrix Community Member

                                This is bad.

                                 

                                All ths images are located or at least point to different locations .

                                 

                                here is what I see: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/5501747/futzcatalog.tiff

                                 

                                I often thought I was going to do that a few weeks ago.

                                 

                                I could delete everything from lightroom before MAY 2012 and then start over......like you suggest but I have to think this through.

                                 

                                This is a collossal mess.

                                • 14. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                  john beardsworth MVP

                                  OK, well you know the saying about when you're in a hole you should stop digging. Maybe step back a bit, and I've alerted the others at LR Forums (as I'll be away for a couple of days).

                                   

                                  Look through your folders panel. Are any folders showing question marks? Can you point those at the Mac locations.

                                  • 15. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                    john beardsworth MVP

                                    vdotmatrix wrote:

                                     

                                    here is the follow-through: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/5501747/futz2.tiff

                                    That's the message that implies the duplicates issue.

                                    • 16. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                      vdotmatrix Community Member

                                      BRAINSTORM!!!!!

                                       

                                      What Happens if I just start a NEW CATALOG?

                                       

                                      Then I import the stuff anew and then these folders won't be associated with any other catalog?

                                       

                                      I am really about to throw up...I have so much work to do ....and can't access these files.....I only need about 50 out of 12,000

                                       

                                       

                                      LOLOLOLOLOLOL

                                      • 17. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                        vdotmatrix Community Member

                                        The issue is not with items at the MAC locations, they are just fine.

                                        the items that come from other places other hard drives that is the big deal here.....

                                        John-I appreciate your help. Sorry about the flap next door: "it don't ,eam nuttin".

                                        cheers

                                        v.

                                         

                                        14.johnbeardy,

                                         

                                        Community Member

                                        Jun 2, 2012 4:08 PM   in reply to vdotmatrix

                                        Report

                                         

                                        OK, well you know the saying about when you're in a hole you should stop digging. Maybe step back a bit, and I've alerted the others at LR Forums (as I'll be away for a couple of days).

                                         

                                        Look through your folders panel. Are any folders showing question marks? Can you point those at the Mac locations.

                                        • 18. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                          john beardsworth MVP

                                          "The issue is not with items at the MAC locations, they are just fine."

                                           

                                          I understood that, and said that you should  point folders which have missing question marks to where those hard drive folders are shown on the Mac. They will have a different path - it's like "catalog" and "catalogue" and you need to do a minor translation.

                                           

                                          So look through your folders panel - are there any question marks there?

                                           

                                          You can start a new catalogue, but you may end up with twice the confusion!

                                          • 19. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                            vdotmatrix Community Member

                                            A world of hurt has transpired since this last post in an attempt to remedy this CONTINUING NIGHTMARE.

                                             

                                            All the edit were done on the WINDOWS box backed up to an ext. HD. ( the images were once on that windows box as you'll see again later).

                                             

                                            I thought I would cut to the chase and simply import all the pictures from the ext. HD, but I must have forgotten to or unchecked the prevent duplicates box and ended up with 41,000 duplicates, triplicates and quads.

                                             

                                            Simplest thing to do, was to delete the previous import and start over but since I was traumatized about gathering info from different forum sources I sat and spun around. for a day or two paralyzed in my work flow.

                                             

                                            I did the stupid thing and contacted ADOBE live chat. She told me to rename the plist file. GREAT! It essentially I think restarted the upgrade from LR3 to LR4 and of course everything was gone since my last LR3 backup.

                                             

                                            So I have serious work to do so I just re-imported the ext. HD without the images and just added everything t the catalog with the box checked to prevent duplicates or apparent duplicates.

                                             

                                            I have the edits for the same images.

                                             

                                            when I try to do anything but especially re-populate existing collections I get this again: 

                                             

                                            http://db.tt/SO0mj2dQ

                                             

                                            http://db.tt/vCgkdoq5

                                             

                                            So what do I do?

                                             

                                            Is there a way to disassociate an image from a catalog (or catalogue), or another image as in this case??

                                             

                                            Maybe I could go back to the old computer put everything where it thinks everything is. Export as a CAT. without the pictures or backups ( because they are already at  a/the destination).

                                             

                                             

                                            A lot on the plate!!!!

                                             

                                             

                                            HAs anyone seen this sort of thing before?

                                            • 20. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                              vdotmatrix Community Member

                                              so when I show in library it takes me to the recently added ext HD...when I open the right click window for collections it says it isn't part of any collections.

                                              • 21. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                john beardsworth MVP

                                                As I said before....

                                                 

                                                "So look through your folders panel - are there any question marks there? "

                                                • 23. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                  vdotmatrix Community Member

                                                  http://db.tt/SO0mj2dQ

                                                   

                                                  http://db.tt/vCgkdoq5

                                                   

                                                  these are a result of following those hundreds of question marks....

                                                  • 24. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                    john beardsworth MVP

                                                    Click the question mark ON THE FOLDER (sorry to shout)

                                                    • 25. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                      john beardsworth MVP

                                                      Folders panel question marks, not on the files....

                                                      SNAG_Program-0006.jpg

                                                      • 26. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                        vdotmatrix Community Member

                                                        I must be a moron really.

                                                        Of all the folders I have only 1 folder and 1 file has a question mark; there must be at least 50 folders.

                                                         

                                                        i click on the question mark amd it brings me to my pictures folder on this computer-uh, withthe same dialogue boxes at the links above.

                                                         

                                                        What does this mean?

                                                         

                                                        That I should probably or should have imported all the raw files, dng, psd etc with everything from the ext HD instaed of ADDING to the CAT and trying to pretend that i know what I am doing...I am shouting but i don't need the cap locks LOL.

                                                         

                                                        If I do this, i wonder if I can repopular those collections then?

                                                        • 27. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                          john beardsworth MVP

                                                          If you're getting the same dialog boxes, you're still trying to fix individual images. Sorry, I should have said right click (rather than click) the question mark on the folder and choose Find Missing Folder. Point LR to where the folder now is, cick Choose, and  the folder's question mark should vanish, as should and the question marks on files which are in that folder.

                                                          • 28. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                            vdotmatrix Community Member

                                                            Ok. that is simply one question mark in the folders panel- the only one. So everything in the folders panel is OK with LR4.

                                                             

                                                            LR4 doesn't like what has happened in the collections panel.

                                                             

                                                            I guess I am trying to find resurrect the collections>find the missing images>arriving at the error message posted above.

                                                             

                                                            ****************************************

                                                            Why is it that when I go to the collections panel>click on a collection that has a question mark>click on a question mark>try to find the photos that I KNOW are on the ext HD that I imported, that I get those 2 error messages. I can go to every picture on the dard drive from LR4 with no problem; I just cant reassociate those images with those collections and their edits.

                                                             

                                                            ****************************************

                                                             

                                                            There has to be a workaround and I am not contacting ADOBE for this.

                                                             

                                                            thanks for taking the time to read this post.

                                                            • 29. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                              john beardsworth MVP

                                                              I'm sorry, but the Collections panel never has question marks. In Lightroom "Collections" are one thing, "Folders" are another, and I'm telling you to sort out the problem in the Folders panel, not anywhere else.

                                                               

                                                              Without meaning to be unpleasant, do say so if you are not using Lightroom in English.

                                                              • 30. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                                vdotmatrix Community Member

                                                                hahaha...no we are here in the good ole USA, Washington DC, that's all we should have for the most part...is English. And yes it would seem like I am not understanding what you write but that is just me...LOL

                                                                 

                                                                NO the collection's panel doesn't have question marks YOU ARE RIGHT, but the resulting question marks from the images contained in that particular collection do however.

                                                                 

                                                                herein lies the problem I am experiencing

                                                                • 31. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                                  john beardsworth MVP

                                                                  Go back to the Folders panel and resolve the question marks on folders.

                                                                   

                                                                  Once that's done, run the menu command Library > Find Missing Photos to isolate all the missing photos in the catalogue. If any remain, then as I suggested earlier work on the question marks on individual pictures. When you get those messages about "already associated", jump to All Photographs and identify where that picture now is.

                                                                   

                                                                  Surely you can find someone in the DC area who knows Lightroom, and English? Put out the call! Tell 'em it's all because you're moving to Mac and you'll find some wildeyed Mac evangelist eager to come to your aid.

                                                                  • 32. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                                    vdotmatrix Community Member

                                                                    As I said above...THERE IS ONLY ONE FOLDER, OUT OF 50, CONTAINING ONE QUESTION MARK in the FOLDERs Panel-ONLY ONE and ONE only.

                                                                     

                                                                    THE FOLDERs panel is NOT WHAT the problem is or WHERE the Question marks appear.

                                                                     

                                                                    As I said before, the problem originates from the collections.

                                                                     

                                                                    I think you have exhausted most senarios and what you can offer and you are done dealing with this so we can certainly let someone else jump in if they choose.

                                                                     

                                                                    I was flammed for seeking answers across the internet and as you see this issue for me is not resolved.

                                                                     

                                                                    I hope you and Victoria will be alright with me trying to find a solution from whomever is wiling to help; I can't afford to have all my eggs in one basket or inbox so to speak, and I appreciate your help John!

                                                                     

                                                                    I thank you for your time!

                                                                    • 33. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                                      john beardsworth MVP

                                                                      Make sure you resolve that one folder's question mark then.

                                                                       

                                                                      But yes, I think we both need someone else to try to help resolve this.  Best of luck!

                                                                      • 35. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                                        Jim Wilde Community Member

                                                                        vdotmatrix wrote:

                                                                         

                                                                        THE FOLDERs panel is NOT WHAT the problem is or WHERE the Question marks appear.

                                                                         

                                                                         

                                                                        If you have a folder containing a number of images (for argument's sake let's say 100), and that folder has the "?" in the Folders Panel, it means that not only is that folder 'missing', but also all the 100 images it contains are also missing. If you click on the missing folder, the grid will be populated with 100 thumbnails, each and every one will also have the "?" to indicate they are missing.

                                                                         

                                                                        If some are all of those 100 images have previously been assigned to collections, then when you click on the collection you will again see the thumbnails with the "?".

                                                                         

                                                                        To deal with the missing 100 images, you can:

                                                                         

                                                                        1. Work within the collections to click on each and every missing image, and tell Lightroom where it is. If you are lucky, Lightroom will also see that some or all of the other 99 images are missing and re-link those as well. But you may not be lucky, so you'll have to relink all of those one by one.

                                                                         

                                                                        2. Or, you can do what John has been advising you to do, and that is relink that ONE AND ONLY ONE folder (assuming you know where it is), and when you have done that all 100 missing images will be relinked automatically.

                                                                         

                                                                        Do you understand that?

                                                                        • 36. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                                          Geoff the kiwi MVP

                                                                          There is also a command under the Library drop down menu in the top Menu Bar "Find Missing Photos" that will put all of the missing photos in your catalog in a special collection where the All Photgraphs one is. This may help you. You can relink the files from there.

                                                                          • 37. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                                            vdotmatrix Community Member

                                                                            10,505

                                                                             

                                                                            that's how many are missing.

                                                                             

                                                                            I just picked one of the files and it says it is located on my old computer.

                                                                             

                                                                            Now what?

                                                                             

                                                                            thanks for the reply!!!!!

                                                                             

                                                                            BTW that command is nice!!

                                                                            • 38. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                                              Geoff the kiwi MVP

                                                                              Ok, what you are seeing is nt where the files are on the HD (that is why they are ? missing) but where they were when Lightroom was last linked to them. What you need to do isfind where they are on the HD and relink them through tha rightclick ? menu.

                                                                              Select one in the Missing Files collection, then use Explorer/Finder to lovate the file number on your HD. Then use the Locate Missing File menu to relink through the resulting dialog menu.

                                                                              You may find it quicker to do this same relinking with Folders. You can do this by again selecting a file in the Missing Files collection, right clicking the file (not the ?) and selecting Show in Folder. Then you can relink the folder to where it is on your HD same as you would with a file.

                                                                               

                                                                              Trya nd keep this all in one thread too please.

                                                                              Thanks.

                                                                              • 39. Re: FILES CAN'T BE FOUND but associated with another catalog
                                                                                vdotmatrix Community Member

                                                                                HI JEOFF!!! I FEEL LIKE A DOOR KNOB! hahahaha

                                                                                 

                                                                                this is what happens when I follow the steps you describe above:

                                                                                I will pick a file with a question mark. I will then follow the link to its location or find it in FINDER.

                                                                                when I hit CHOOSE I get the second message

                                                                                 

                                                                                 

                                                                                 

                                                                                in this order ...

                                                                                http://db.tt/SO0mj2dQ

                                                                                http://db.tt/vCgkdoq5

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