11 Replies Latest reply on Sep 11, 2016 1:18 PM by gestark

    Missing folders

    petert17985510

      I store my pictures on an external hard drive under a folder titled "Lightroom - May 2016+."  When I import pictures, I import them into subfolders within that folder, all of which start with the date (year/month/date) so they are listed within the Lightroom - May 2016+ folder in chronological order.

       

      When I am importing new photos, the folders all appear in the lefthand column under the proper folder name, just the way I want them to appear.  I can click on any of the subfolders, and all of the pictures are right where they are supposed to be.

       

      However, when I go into the Library module, and click on Folders, the hard drive is listed, but when I expand it, none of the folders are there.  As a result, I can't figure out how to get my any of my pictures to open in the Library module at all.

       

      "Show photos in subfolders" is checked in the Photo menu.

       

      Help?

       

      Thanks.

       

      - Pete

        • 1. Re: Missing folders
          ManiacJoe Adobe Community Professional

          By default the Folder panel does not show the folders in their true tree layout. To see that you need to right-click "show parent folder" (repeat as needed).

          • 2. Re: Missing folders
            petert17985510 Level 1

            Thanks.  But right-click where?  I've tried right-clicking (command clicking on my Mac) just about everywhere I never see that as an option.

            • 3. Re: Missing folders
              gestark Level 1

              Was not sure if you were importing for the first time or this had been the way you always do it and suddenly it quit working.

              • 4. Re: Missing folders
                richardplondon Level 4

                First, that "+" in the folder name bothers me. I can imagine it may be fine in some situations, but problematic (a "special" or "reserved" character) in others.

                 

                Next, every photo that you see in LR has to feature somewhere in the Folders panel, even if what the Folders panel is showing, is not correct for where the photo is currently stored (or not accessible).

                 

                The Lightroom Folders panel is not a view of your disk. It is a LISTING that LR builds on the fly, of all of the different image locations that it knows about from images having been imported. Every entry in the LR catalog (each image thumbnail) remembers where LR thinks its file is probably stored on disk.

                 

                In order to highlight where that is (by which I mean, where does LR currently "think" the file is stored), you need to find that photo some other way. For example, starting from All Photographs and then narrowing down on it more selectively. Perhaps going to your Previous Import view.

                 

                However you get to a given photo, you can then right-click (Cmd-click) on a given photo and choose Go to Folder in Library. This may not display how you expect, since the Folders view is not a literal picture of your disk storage. It is a listing of various remembered locations from various imports. And these remembered locations may or may not match the current reality. Normal LR practice is to leave things be such that it WILL match, but certain things can undermine that. It is just a matter of avoiding doing those things unintentionally, and of a few simple steps to 'keep the paperwork in order' after doing them intentionally.

                 

                These various remembered locations may not display in the correct relationship to each other - usually this is because a parent folder / hierarchy that particular folders have in common and sit within, is itself not displayed by LR. Therefore their true folder relationship is not EVIDENT to the LR user.

                 

                You can make that become evident by right-clicking on the Folder that you have highlighted as above (with "Go to Folder in Library"), and choosing Show Parent Folder on this and perhaps on other folders, until things resolve more clearly.

                 

                Analogy: say there were two men you only knew by their first names - and you asked about their last names and parentage, and only then discovered whether they were brothers, or uncle and nephew, or whatever; or perhaps, were really unrelated even though you'd assumed they were brothers.

                 

                You can also use Show in Explorer / Finder and this opens up a standard file browser showing where a file is on disk.

                 

                OR, LR may be unable to find and show this file location currently. It once did, and that is what it will continue to show in the Folders panel indefinitely. For example, when you disconnect an external drive where pictures are stored, LR does not forget those. It just knows that these are currently unavailable files. Re-connecting fixes that.

                 

                THERE IS NO NEED TO REIMPORT when something goes missing - I'd go so far as to say, that ALWAYS does more harm than good. Just as, if something's gone wrong in Fred Smith's employment records; adding him again as a brand new employee will only add to that confusion - since now you have two files for two Fred Smiths.

                 

                And if when you re-connect the drive it appears to the computer as a DIFFERENT drive reference, or if you have renamed some folder or reorganised the actual folder arrangement on that drive behind LR's back; then its records (the Folders panel) about where everything is stored, are no longer correct.

                 

                And that is fixable either by putting things back as they were before (so that they correspond to the paperwork again) or else updating the paperwork so that it corresponds to how things now are.

                • 5. Re: Missing folders
                  petert17985510 Level 1

                  Richard - thanks very much for taking the time to write such a detailed response.  I appreciate it.

                   

                  But your answer concerns me, and is another example of the frustration I've had with Lightroom since I started using it.  I'm an experienced Aperture user, and switched over once Apple decided not to update the software anymore.  But Lightroom just isn't intuitive at all.  It seems every time I try to do something new that should be fairly simple, I need to read a tutorial or post something on this board to figure it out.

                   

                  This is about as simple as it should get.  When I want to go back and find the pictures of my vacation to Maine six weeks ago, I want to be able to just go to the Library module, and be able to see my event folders (as I described in my first email) all listed there.  Is that not possible?  Or have I set up my management structure incorrectly?  Do I need to set up either a "Collection" with subfolders in it, or a "Catalog" with subfolders in it, to be able to view them that way?

                   

                  I have not moved or re-named any files/folders on the hard drive outside of Lightroom, so that's not the issue.

                   

                  Thanks again for your help.

                   

                  - Frustrated in NY

                  • 6. Re: Missing folders
                    petert17985510 Level 1

                    I believe this is a new problem.  I've used Lightroom to save about 8 events and always recall being able to see the folders on the lefthand side in the Library module.  Then last week I could only see about 5 of the folders, not the others, and now I can't see any of them. 

                    • 7. Re: Missing folders
                      dj_paige Level 9

                        I'm an experienced Aperture user, and switched over once Apple decided not to update the software anymore. But Lightroom just isn't intuitive at all.  It seems every time I try to do something new that should be fairly simple, I need to read a tutorial or post something on this board to figure it out.

                      If you think Lightroom should work the same as Aperture, there is the problem. Lightroom works differently. You will need to spend some time learning the software, instead of jumping right in and trying to do the same things the same way as you did in Aperture.

                       

                      So please take the time learn how Lightroom works, and you will find (as many people have) that it does make sense and things are easy to do once you know how.

                      Getting Started with Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 | Adobe TV

                      Free Adobe Lightroom Quick Start PDF eBooks to learn the basics

                       

                      This is about as simple as it should get.  When I want to go back and find the pictures of my vacation to Maine six weeks ago, I want to be able to just go to the Library module, and be able to see my event folders (as I described in my first email) all listed there.  Is that not possible?

                      yes it is possible, the folders you are using should be under the Folder Panel on the left hand side. It is possible that you have selected to Import the photos using the COPY option (instead of the ADD option), and so Lightroom thinks you want to use the copy you just told it to make, which is in a different folder.

                       

                      Or have I set up my management structure incorrectly?  Do I need to set up either a "Collection" with subfolders in it, or a "Catalog" with subfolders in it, to be able to view them that way?

                      In my opinion, the BEST way to manage your photos in Lightroom is to assign keywords and other metadata to the photos and then use the keywords and other metadata to do your searching. Folder are simply the storage location, you can use default folder names like capture date which takes no effort on your part, the folder names have no other meaning. Then the exact folder location becomes irrelevant, and the above importing problem (if indeed that is what you did) is irrelevant as well.

                      • 8. Re: Missing folders
                        gestark Level 1

                        Looks like your getting good advice from others and I hate to add to the confusion….

                         

                        Just a couple of thoughts..anyway...

                         

                        Have you navigated to your Folders and Photos OUTSIDE of Lightroom to confirm they are still where you created them and in the order you designed?

                         

                        It sounds like you were able to see your photos at one time inside of Lightroom? ….. If so, you should still be able to see your previews  of those photos from past imports. If you still see your previews you should see a little “Exclamation Mark” on upper right of each preview. If you click on that Exclamation Mark it should indicate your folder is missing and ask if you want to find location… you can then navigate your way back to the original folders and link up your previews with the originals..

                        • 9. Re: Missing folders
                          dj_paige Level 9

                          gestark wrote:

                           

                          Have you navigated to your Folders and Photos OUTSIDE of Lightroom to confirm they are still where you created them and in the order you designed?

                          If the user has imported the photos using COPY, then the solution is just the oppposite, the user has to find the photos in Lightroom, and then these can be reconnected.

                          • 10. Re: Missing folders
                            bob frost Level 3

                            Right-click on the top folder of whatever trees you have showing.

                             

                            Bob Frost

                            • 11. Re: Missing folders
                              gestark Level 1

                              Always difficult to trouble shoot an issue on someone else’s computer….

                               

                              Outside of Lightroom were you able to find the copied files on your Hard Drive ? Just to confirm that the files were copied and that all your folders and naming conventions still exist ?

                               

                              Though you did not say.. I’m assuming you do have previews of photos from missing folders?

                               

                              If you do…. In the Library section  try going to “Catalog”... “all photographs”…. navigate to a preview of one of your photos your looking for… right click on said preview and choose “go to folder in Library” If it takes you to a folder... then again right click on the folder  and navigate to the original folder your looking for on your hard drive.