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If you are currently using Lightroom 5 then switching over to the creative cloud is really simple. There are some who say that it isn't necessary to switch to Lightroom downloaded from the creative cloud. But I did. I'm using Windows, so I used the standard uninstall process to uninstall my standalone Lightroom. Then I installed Lightroom from the creative cloud. After the installation was complete there was an icon for Lightroom (just like the previous one because it is the same program) on my desktop. I double clicked on the icon and Lightroom opened the same catalog that I had been using and everything that I had done previously was still in place. You see, the catalog and previews and all those other files are user files generated by Lightroom on your computer. But they aren't part of the Lightroom program. So removing the Lightroom program does nothing to your catalog or previews or preview cache. It's the same program precisely. It's just licensed differently.
If you have been using Lightroom 4 then Lightroom 5 will find the catalog you have been using and will prompt you to allow it to create an updated copy of it that conforms to the new database format. It's no different than upgrading the standalone version. So the short answer is that you shouldn't lose any of your work by switching over.
Hi JimHess. Thanks for your quick and clear answer. I thought this would most likely be the case. But I wanted to make sure before jumping in, and I couldn't find anything about this in the Adobe FAQ or general website.