12 Replies Latest reply on Nov 3, 2016 4:51 PM by tcase88

    Aperture to Lightroom transition process

    Elenita516 Level 1

      I have migrated my Aperture Library to Lightroom. The library is very large (200+ GB) and resides on an external hard drive.

      When I plug this external hard drive into my desktop computer at home (a Mac) and open Lightroom, I see that all of my projects, albums and keywords have properly migrated to Lightroom. But, when I plug the external drive into my laptop (MacBook Pro - newer than the desktop computer), none of those things is visible. In other words, I can click on 'import' at the bottom of the window and all the images show up in Lightroom, but only in chronological order. None of my organizational structure (projects, albums, keywords, etc) appears. This is a profound mystery to me. Any thoughts?

       

      I have tried contacting customer support, but they have been pretty useless so far. I have to say that I am quite resentful that Adobe asks its customers to make a commitment by paying a monthly fee, but they seem to have pretty much washed their hands of their duty to provide good customer support. This is just not right. Any attempts at escalating this complaint have been given lip service with no real response.

       

      Ellen (San Francisco)

        • 1. Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
          john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          It sounds like the Lightroom catalogue (= "library" in Aperture) is on the hard drive of the desktop computer. When you are on the laptop, you are looking at a catalogue on its hard drive, so it doesn't contain all the ex Aperture stuff on the other catalogue.

           

          If you continually need to open your catalogue on different machines, on the desktop you need to find the catalogue in Finder and move it onto the external drive. The Lightroom menu, Catalog Settings, Show button will help you. Close LR and move it.

           

          Once it's moved, then double click the catalogue (lrcat file) on the external drive. Set LR's preference (general) to Open Most Recent Catalogue. Then, on the laptop, double click the catalogue and set the preference the same way. Now your LR catalogue resides on the external drive and each computer knows where it is.

          • 2. Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
            Elenita516 Level 1

            Thank you for your response. Unfortunately, the Lightroom catalogue ( = Aperture library) is definitely not on the drive of my desktop computer. It is on the external hard drive and nowhere else. The original Aperture one is also on an external drive (a different one).

             

            It just seems that each computer is reading it differently. Or...Lightroom is reading it differently depending on which computer I'm using. Strange...

            I am thinking I might try comparing the settings on the two different computers to see if there is a difference that could be causing this. I just don't know what else to think.

            • 3. Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
              johnrellis Most Valuable Participant

              Plug the external drive into your desktop, start LR, and do Lightroom > Catalog Settings > General.   Please report the exact location and file name shown, e.g.

              Untitled.png

              Now connect the external drive to your laptop, start LR, do Lightroom > Catalog Settings > General, and report the exact location and file name. shown.

              1 person found this helpful
              • 4. Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
                Elenita516 Level 1

                I did what you suggested and here is what I got...

                On the desktop, after a little snooping around, I found out that my catalog was located in my Pictures folder , not on the external hard drive even though all the images reside on the external drive. And, in spite of containing all 30,000 images, the LR catalog in my Pictures folder is only about 300MB! What?

                Screen Shot 2014-12-13 at 8.15.19 PM.png

                But on the laptop, here is what I saw:

                Screen Shot 2014-12-13 at 8.26.56 PM.png And this is what the LR window looks like on the laptop. Just a bunch of chronological folders (identical to what you see when you look inside the external drive).

                Screen Shot 2014-12-13 at 8.28.56 PM.png

                This is even more confusing than it was before!

                Thanks for your thoughts.

                Ellen

                • 5. Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
                  Elenita516 Level 1

                  I'm reporting some progress...

                  I moved the catalog from the Pictures folder on the desktop computer to the external drive, then I plugged the ext. drive to the laptop and was able to tell it connect to the catalog that I had just moved onto the ext. drive. I opened LR and it was populated by all of my images, but LR was unable to locate the originals and so all the little squares are blank. It looks like all my project folders are there (on the left under Collections), but LR can't find the originals! I feel like I'm moving in the right direction, but still not there.

                  Here's what it looks like now:

                  Screen Shot 2014-12-13 at 8.47.58 PM.png

                  • 6. Re: Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
                    johnrellis Most Valuable Participant

                    The screenshots make it clearer what's going on.  In LR terminology, the term "catalog" is used ambiguously.  Strictly speaking, a catalog is a database file that contains references to the images but not the images themselves; the catalog also contains metadata and the definitions of collections, smart albums, etc.  The catalog is represented by the .lrcat file and associated preview files and subfolders.  Sometimes, however, Adobe documentation and others use the term "catalog" loosely to mean both the database proper and all the referenced images.  So you have to be careful when reading and discussing the catalog.

                     

                    As you've discovered, when you first imported from Aperture, the plugin created the catalog (the .lrcat file) on your desktop harddrive, while the images were on the external drive.  All fine so far.  Then you connected the external drive to your laptop, but it didn't have access to the catalog residing on the desktop harddrive, so LR created a new blank catalog.

                     

                    I believe you've now copied the catalog from the desktop harddrive (/Users/elenita/Pictures/Lightroom) onto your external drive.  But when you open that catalog, LR thinks all of the images are "missing" and marks their thumbnails with a "!".  That is, the filenames recorded in the catalog database aren't pointing to the current locations of the images.  I'm not sure how this happened, because we're probably missing some details of what you've done.  Some next steps:

                     

                    1. On your desktop, verify that you've opened the catalog on the harddrive by doing Lightroom > Catalog Settings > General.  The Location field should show the location of the .lrcat file on the external drive.

                     

                    2. In the left-hand column, click the left-pointing black arrow next to Seagate Backup (that's your external drive, right?):

                    Untitled1.png

                    That will expand the Folders view and let you see all the folders the LR catalog knows about.  It should look something like this:

                    Untitled.png

                    3. Right-click one of the top-most folders (e.g. in the shot above, "1991") and select Show Parent Folder.  Keep repeating that until the top-most folder is "/"; it should now look something like this:

                    Untitled.png

                    Expand any collapsed folders by clicking the grey arrows to the left of the folder, so we can see the catalog's hierarchy.   That hierarchy should correspond to what's on your external drive, but something has obviously gone wrong.

                     

                    4. Take a screenshot of the Folders pane and post it here.  Don't make any changes in the interim.  The screenshot should make it very obvious how to quickly fix your catalog.

                    1 person found this helpful
                    • 7. Re: Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
                      johnrellis Most Valuable Participant

                      Correction to step 1: On your desktop, verify that you've opened the catalog on the external drive by doing Lightroom > Catalog Settings > General.  The Location field should show the location of the .lrcat file on the external drive.

                      1 person found this helpful
                      • 8. Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
                        photo-enthusiast Level 1

                        Ellen,

                         

                        I, too, expected decent support with payment of a monthly fee.  Having spoken with three representatives about various issues, support has limited themselves to assistance with licensing and installation only.  Aside from being polite, Lightroom support is among the worst I've dealt with.  I fault Adobe's executive and management teams, as the problem is endemic. 

                        Elenita516 wrote:

                         

                        I have tried contacting customer support, but they have been pretty useless so far. I have to say that I am quite resentful that Adobe asks its customers to make a commitment by paying a monthly fee, but they seem to have pretty much washed their hands of their duty to provide good customer support. This is just not right. Any attempts at escalating this complaint have been given lip service with no real response.

                        • 9. Re: Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
                          Elenita516 Level 1

                          John,

                          Just a quick not to thank you for your thoughts and suggestions. I have not had a chance to carry out your advice yet (holiday season) and am hoping in the next couple of days to zero in on this problem. I'll keep you posted.

                          best,

                          Ellen

                          • 10. Re: Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
                            Elenita516 Level 1

                            In the meantime, I just took a screen shot of the hierarchy (I am using my laptop right now). As you can see, the little triangles are de-activated and there's a question mark on each folder. I probably need to go back to my desktop to restart this process...

                            Screen Shot 2014-12-30 at 11.12.05 AM.png

                            • 11. Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
                              Elenita516 Level 1

                              There is more. I tried clicking on the exclamation point on each rectangle indicating a non-located file and it tells me exactly where to find it in its folder. I follow that track and click on the image...and voilà - it shows up in the catalog. Now...I need to figure out how to do that for all of them as a batch. I can't, of course, do that for all 30,000 files one at a time!

                              1 person found this helpful
                              • 12. Re: Aperture to Lightroom transition process
                                tcase88 Level 1

                                Hi - I was wondering if you figured out a batch process of doing this?  I too have a similar size database to transfer to LR.  Thank you.