You have obviously imported the same photo twice. Most likely one photo contains your edits and user-supplied metadata, and Lightroom thinks it is missing. Most likely, the other photo is the second import, it contains none of your edits and none of your user-supplied metadata, but Lightroom does not think it is missing.
So, in my experience, no the missing photo is not a Ghost. It is an important photo that you need to keep and relink to your actual photo on your hard disk (this assumes my statements in the previous paragraph are correct). The one that Lightroom thinks is not missing is the one you don't want (again, assuming that it does not have edits or user-supplied metadata).
So, you have to confirm whether or not the "missing" photo in Lightroom contains edits and user-supplied metadata. If it does, report back and we can see if we can fix this.
And whatever the answer, do not import photos a 2nd time, this never solves the problem and usually makes the problem worse, as you have seen.
Thank you for your prompt reply. It looks like you were right on the money. The "missing" photo has keywords and metadata. Tne "not missing" photo has metadata but no keywords.
also I haven't knowingly imported a photo more than once (obviously doesn't mean that it hasn't happened) I thought the "import - new" filter would prevent this.
This is what you need to do.
Delete from Lightroom (but not from the hard disk) the duplicates that are "not missing" in Lightroom.
Then follow these instructions on the "missing" photos in Lightyroom to point Lightroom to the new location of the photos: http://www.computer-darkroom.com/lr2_find_folder/find-folder.htm
And as stated earlier, make an ironclad commitment to yourself to NEVER importing photos a 2nd time.
bingo! terrific. The only problem now is the find nearby photos isn't picking up the nearby photos
You should reconnect entire folders at once — or an entire "tree" of folders by reconnecting the top level folder, as shown in Figure 4.
great; thank you so much. I will now save what little hair I have left