10 Replies Latest reply on Oct 10, 2014 12:08 PM by dj_paige

    I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate

    Jlinkrn

      To start off thanks for the help. I have searched but cannot find an answer to my question, I feel I am doomed. I am able to open my catalogue, see my edited thumbnails of photos, but I get the message they are unable to locate. I have performed all steps to find them but I can't. On top of it I KNOW I deleted the place where they were saved because it was in an out of order folder and I was cleaning up my HD. Also I did not back up(mistake I know I'm learning).  I have all the original files still, but I guess my question is why can I see the catalogue with all my edits, but can't seem to locate the file, I feel they have to be there somewhere. Is it possible to see these things and still be doomed? Or in fact are they still somewhere to be found? Thanks.

        • 1. Re: I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate
          JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          Until you fully understand how Lightroom operates it probably isn't a good idea to try to clean up your hard drive outside of Lightroom. The Lightroom catalog is a database that keeps track of where images were when they were imported or where they were located on your hard drive. I suspect you are getting messages that your photos are missing. Here are instructions that should help you resolve the problem:

          Lightroom thinks my photos are missing - how do I fix it? | The Lightroom Queen

          • 2. Re: I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate
            dj_paige Level 9

            If you have all the original files, then put them back in the place where you had accidentally deleted the folder. If necessary, reconnect via http://www.computer-darkroom.com/lr2_find_folder/find-folder.htm

            • 3. Re: I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate
              Jlinkrn Level 1

              I tried her method and cannot locate the file. I have also tried to locate the file in the search box (which worked on another issue). Will try the next suggestion. Thanks for the input.

              • 4. Re: I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate
                dj_paige Level 9

                cannot locate the file

                But what does that mean? Does that mean that you no longer have a copy of this photo anywhere on your computer? Or does it mean you are sure it's there but you just don't know where it is? Or does it mean something else?

                • 5. Re: I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate
                  Jlinkrn Level 1

                  From my understanding; when you start a new catalogue you designate where to save the files (.dng) in my case. I did not realize that once designated by one catalogue it carries that designation to the subsequent new catalogues unless changed. They were designated to a location that I deleted entirely off my hard drive . Therefore I tried the link suggested by JimHess and I get the dialogue box "the photo cannot be used because the original file could not be found". But what makes no sense is I see the thumbnails of the photos, they are edited still, but cant be found because I deleted the folder in which they were saved (I'm assuming)

                  • 6. Re: I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate
                    JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    The catalog is simply  a database that keeps track of where your images are located and the adjustments you have made to those images. Images can be in multiple catalogs. Images in catalogs are not "in" Lightroom. Lightroom is only pointing to where they are located.

                     

                    If you deleted a folder of DNG files from one catalog, thinking they would still be in the other, that was a big mistake. The racing you can still see the edited photos is because the catalog still contains the preview images that were generated. But if you don't have the original DNG files anymore there isn't really much that you can do.

                    • 7. Re: I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate
                      NicHamilton Level 3

                      Lightroom creates separate thumbnail files and keeps them up to date with all the edits that you have carried out on the raw files.  Hence you can still see the thumbnails even after you have deleted the original files.

                      • 8. Re: I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate
                        Jlinkrn Level 1

                        So just to finalize and be clear. I start of with a RAW .NEF file. Start a catalogue with the .NEF files. Then as I edit them they were saved to a destination elsewhere that I have since deleted as . DNG files. I still have all original photos, can see the edited thumbnails which makes sense based on what other have said, but all the time I put into editing through Lightroom is out the window because I deleted the destination files?

                        • 9. Re: I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate
                          JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                          If you created DNG copies of all of the NEF files, and made all the adjustments to those DNG files, and then subsequently deleted the DNG files, then yes, all of your work is gone. If you still have the original NEF files, consider just making adjustments to those. There is no need to make any copies because Lightroom isn't changing anything in those NEF files. All of your adjustments are simply being stored in the catalog along with other file information. When you need a copy to give to someone else you can export a copy in DNG, TIF, JPEG, etc. and give that copy to them. There is no need to be creating copies to work on so you can preserve the originals. It might be to your advantage to take some time to understand how Lightroom "really" works. It is different from other programs, much different. And if you don't fully understand where you are headed with Lightroom it's very easy to create problems such as you have created.

                          • 10. Re: I can open my catalogue and see edited photos but cannot locate
                            dj_paige Level 9

                            Jlinkrn wrote:

                             

                            So just to finalize and be clear. I start of with a RAW .NEF file. Start a catalogue with the .NEF files. Then as I edit them they were saved to a destination elsewhere that I have since deleted as . DNG files. I still have all original photos, can see the edited thumbnails which makes sense based on what other have said, but all the time I put into editing through Lightroom is out the window because I deleted the destination files?

                            If you edited the NEF files, you don't need the DNGs, but you do need the NEF files. Do you still have those?

                             

                            If you told Lightroom to convert to DNG before editing, then you need the converted DNG files of your original NEFs, not the ones you "saved" (technically there is no "save" command in Lightroom so you couldn't save the files as DNG, and anyway if you mean "exported" then it shouldn't matter if you deleted the exported photos). Do you still have those DNGs that were converted from your original NEF files??

                             

                            So, if you deleted the exported photos, you haven't lost your editing.

                             

                            If you have deleted your NEF originals (in the case where you edited the NEF files), or the DNGs converted from your original NEF files and the original NEFs are deleted too (in the case where you edited the DNG files) then your editing is probably intact in the catalog but can't be used as you don't have the original files.