My Lightroom catalog is set to backup/optimize once a week at the end of session. Once I click "Backup now" my screen freezes and I can't do anything else at all. I can't even minimize the window to do other tasks, which is a problem because the backup/optimize takes several minutes.
This is extremely inconvenient and makes no sense. Can it be fixed?
When you start the backup process, LR is not going to respond to any of your input. (Bad coding design by Adobe.)
You should be able to switch to other apps and have them run on top of LR while the backup is happening.
if I'm working on Lightroom at full screen I can't even get out of full screen or minimize it to have access to anything else it locks everything
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If you are running Windows, alt-tab will cycle though your running programs; the "windows" key will popup your "start" menu; or you can just click on the "start" button in your TaskBar.
I would assume that the macs have similar functionality at the OS level.