3 Replies Latest reply on Jul 26, 2016 1:48 PM by john beardsworth

    Search (i.e. grep) across lightroom backup catalogs for specific file names

    mikej68803524

      Hi -

       

      Is there a way to search Lightroom catalogs for specific files or folders? I've had some limited success with 'grep -ar expression .' in my Lightroom backups folder with my search criteria and am getting some useful results, but the formatting makes it hard for me to know for sure I'm seeing all info.

       

      I use Lightroom 5 and have backups set to run each time I close Lightroom. At this moment, I don't want to open Lightroom and open or revert to the old backup catalogs and look manually as I do not want to risk disturbing the underlying data on the hard drive in case I need to use undelete software in an attempt to find the lost photos and videos.

       

      What I hope to uncover via this search is the point in time when specific folder and files were deleted, i.e. not in the Lightroom catalog anymore. I'll use that info in my search to recover these lost files.

       

      It (almost) goes without saying these are really important photos. I'm open to any suggestions that would accomplish my objective.

       

      Thanks,

      Mike

        • 1. Re: Search (i.e. grep) across lightroom backup catalogs for specific file names
          ManiacJoe Adobe Community Professional

          Doing any type of string search on a database file is  not all that helpful since the binary file contains lots of links from table to table that "grep" cannot navigate.

           

          The Lightroom catalog is a SQLite database. You can download the SQLite software and query the database if you so desire. There is not public documentation of for database structure; if you are not familiar with SQL databases, you may not find this all to helpful.

          • 2. Re: Search (i.e. grep) across lightroom backup catalogs for specific file names
            mikej68803524 Level 1

            Thanks for the very helpful pointer. I've been able to view data in Lrcat backups using a sqlite viewer. I've found the point in time where the files are gone from the catalog in the AgLibraryFolder and AgLibraryFile tables.

             

            This raises two more questions:

            1) I don't see a change log of any sort. Does Lightroom keep a change history showing commands like the movement of File1 from Folder1 to Folder2, or deletion of File 1? For example, it might show "File1 moved from Folder1 to Folder 2."

             

            2) Does anyone know of an existing script that can pull out file information for a list of files that I'll generally call metadata? In my case it might pull out file size, flag setting, color code, dimensions of photo, tags, etc. I could use deleted files in a CSV file as the input, the script would run, and the result for me would be a list that had Filename, Foldername, Metadata in a CSV. Or something like this.

             

            Again, Thanks,

            Mike

            • 3. Re: Search (i.e. grep) across lightroom backup catalogs for specific file names
              john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              1. Not as far as I know. Only Develop's History.

               

              2. Your requirements sound very custom, so I'd say no. Look up my ListView plugin for one idea though.