Which version of PSE you have?
Where are the files located? Any idea, how did they go missing? External hard disk being disconnected or files renamed/deleted outside of Elements Organizer?
Answers to these will help us suggest what to try next.
Thank you for the response.
I am using PSE 11, recently upgraded from PSE 6. I think my problems arise from moving files around, renaming them, and re-organizing them in albums. I am not sure which causes the problem, but I have not changed my one catalogue. I frequently delete unwanted thumbnails of photos and usually also delete them from my hard drive. I do not want to recover those deleted photos, only the ones I was saving and re-organizing.
I think my problems arise from moving files around, renaming them
If you did this outside of PSE, then you have a real mess on your hands. No wonder the automatic reconnect can't find them. Once you start renaming files outside of PSE, there's really no easy way to reconnect the files. All I can think of is to reconnect them one by one.
All moving, organizing, or re-naming of my files has been done inside PSE, but usually I do this with the thumbnails, not using the Edit program within PSE. Does that result in the thumbnails losing connection to the file. If so, why does PSE allow a user to use the thumbnails for organizing the file or creating an album?? I never have seen any warning that my working with the thumbnails inside PSE would cause them to disconnect from the files so that I cannot recover them. Am I right in understanding that it is my working with the thumbnails that causes the disconnect??
All moving, organizing, or re-naming of my files has been done inside PSE, but usually I do this with the thumbnails, not using the Edit program within PSE.
This sentence clearly states how you usually do things, but it only implies (but does not clearly state) you moved or renamed your photos using the PSE Editor. Is that correct? Is that what you did? (You also seem to imply later that you used the PSE Editor to create albums, which is impossible.) Can you state clearly what you did?
Let me just state that if you move or rename inside the Organizer, you shouldn't see any disconnected files. If you move or rename using any other means, including the PSE Editor, you will cause disconnected files.
I almost always have moved, organized or named my images using the Organizer; occasionally I may have worked on a few images using the Edit program which I enter from the Organizer. Would using either of these features result in disconnecting the files? It seems like the natural use of the program.
I can say that virtually all of the organizing of my files has been done inside the Organizer. When I have downloaded photos from my camera, my PSE captures thumbnails of them; I first look at the thumbnails in PSE 11 and delete the images I do not wish to keep. Then I create a category or subcategory for the images and attach Tags to organize them. Next, I create an album and select the images I wish to put into that album. During this process I create captions for each image. That is all I have done when organizing my photos.
I do not delete or work with the photos in any manner outside of the Organizer and a very few where I have used the Edit portion of PSE. I do not see why anything I have done should disconnect the thumbnails from the images that are stored on my hard drive. If they become disconnected because of what I have done as indicated above, I think that is a major, major flaw in PSE. I have a hard time accepting what has happened; I feel I have only done what the PSE Organizer encourages me to do and guides me to do by creating the choices for me to follow. Am I wrong??
On a very few occasions, I have transferred a few images from the bin of the Edit feature directly into an album. That would not even begin to account for the large number of thumbnails which now show the little icon indicating that the thumbnails are disconnected from the files.
I appreciate your interest and emails, but so far they are not telling me how to reconnect the thumbnails to the files. Unless that happens, I can not work with the images in PSE or print them. Big problem! All I can do is try to find them individually among the thousands of photos on my hard drive--very hard to do. It seems that PSE has failed to give me a useful program and, even worse, has destroyed all my past hard work in organizing the images.