7 Replies Latest reply on Oct 21, 2016 6:26 PM by nothinglikeit

    LR shut down with "error" message, now my catalog is gone.  What can I do now?

    nothinglikeit

      I was working on a photo in PS, saved it back to LR.  Then LR message that an error had occurred and it had to shut down.  When I attempted to re-opened it, there was a message that my catalog had been corrupted and needed to be repaired, but when I hit the button for repair, it came up with the exact same screen again.

       

      Looking on my HD for the catalog, finally found it in the wrong folder.  The folder where it should be located was empty!  Tried to open it, got the corrupt file message again.  I tried to delete some old catalogs from last year, to free up space, but they would not delete. 

       

      I have seen other people asking similar questions, so hopefully Adobe is aware of this and can come up with a solution.  (I have to assume that my LR CC was updated to LR 6, since this seems to be what has caused problems for people.)

       

      Can someone tell me what to do?  I could uninstall and reinstall LR, then import all pictures from my backup.  But that would be a big job, not only because it would take time, but also because of the way I have my folders arranged...  Hoping there is an easier fix for this!

       

      Thank you for your help!

       

      Susan

        • 1. Re: LR shut down with "error" message, now my catalog is gone.  What can I do now?
          JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          A reinstall isn't necessary because the catalog is a separate file. But hopefully you have a backup that you can restore. If you don't have a backup that you can turn to then hold down the Ctrl key while you start Lightroom and you will have the option to open other catalogs or create a new one.

          • 2. Re: LR shut down with "error" message, now my catalog is gone.  What can I do now?
            nothinglikeit Level 1

            Thanks for your response.  I tried to open my most recent backup, but was told it was corrupted.  Then it would not fix it!  A lot of other backups I tried opening had very few photos in them.  Something is definitely wrong!

             

            Thanks for the suggestion about creating a new catalog.  I do have a backup of my photos on my HD.  Still hope I won't have to go there.

            • 3. Re: LR shut down with "error" message, now my catalog is gone.  What can I do now?
              trshaner Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              You have had similar issues in the past: nothinglikeit Let's try to clear up a few things and then I'll provide some suggestions in a 2nd reply.

               

              There appears to be a misunderstanding concerning the purpose of the LR Catalog, Catalog Backup files, and what happens when image files are imported into a catalog.  In general you should only create and use one (1) LR Catalog file. When you Import image files from a camera memory card YOU determine the hard drive location, folder organization, and file renaming if any. The files are then "copied" from the memory card to the destination folder location YOU created using the Import module's panel settings. The LR Catalog file does NOT contain a copy of the image files. The LR Catalog only creates a database "marker" indicating where it can find the files on your hard drive. That is why it is important you never Delete, Rename, or Move image files and folders from outside of LR with Windows Explorer or Mac Finder.

               

              The purpose of the Catalog Backup is to create a current copy of the "working" LR Catalog file, which can be used in case it becomes corrupted. Again, it does not contain a copy of the imported image files! It is important that the Catalog backup file(s) and all of your image files and folders are "copied" onto a separate hard drive such as an external USB drive. You can keep multiple copies (i.e. older copies) of the Catalog backup file, but they are rarely helpful. An example would be if you inadvertently removed some images from the LR catalog file, but didn't discover it until many months later. You could then go back to an older Catalog backup file, open it, find and select just the image files that were removed from LR, use 'Export As Catalog', and then 'Import from Another Catalog' to get them back into your current "work" LR catalog.

               

              Lots of good tutorials here:

              Lightroom tutorials | Learn how to use Photoshop Lightroom

              • 4. Re: LR shut down with "error" message, now my catalog is gone.  What can I do now?
                trshaner Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                nothinglikeit wrote:

                 

                Looking on my HD for the catalog, finally found it in the wrong folder. The folder where it should be located was empty!

                The "working" LR Catalog Folder should look something like this:

                If you found an "empty" folder it is NOT your current "working" LR Catalog Folder. You should see the Previews folder(s) and perhaps a.lock file.The .lock file is automatically removed when LR closes, but it can remain if LR crashes.

                 

                Use Windows Explorer and Search your drive(s) for .lrcat. When you find the "working" LR Catalog Folder delete the .lock file before trying to use a catalog backup file. Here's the procedure: Disaster strikes - a corrupted catalog! | The Lightroom Queen

                 

                nothinglikeit wrote:

                 

                I tried to delete some old catalogs from last year, to free up space, but they would not delete.

                This sounds like a file and folders Permissions issue. Scroll down to "Issue 2: I cannot access, change, save, or delete files and folders" here to set full Read & Write permissions: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/2623670 You may need to also apply the full Read & Write permission to your "working" LR Folder.

                • 5. Re: LR shut down with "error" message, now my catalog is gone.  What can I do now?
                  nothinglikeit Level 1

                  I appreciate your attempt to answer my questions. However you have made some incorrect assumptions.  I DO understand the purpose of the LR catalog, catalog backup files, and what happens when image files are imported into a catalog.

                   

                  As for the empty folder, I am very careful to back up my Catalog into folders labeled with the current month.  The correct backup showed up in a different month's folder even though I had this month's folder as the default place to back up.

                   

                  I have already looked for the .lrcat and the folders found that way did not contain my true "working" catalog.  I did see the .lock file, though.  Did not know what it meant.  Are you saying that since it is remaining, that is preventing me from being able to open the proper catalog?  And if I delete the .lock file, my catalog will then open with all my pictures?

                   

                  ------------------------------------------------------

                   

                  Just looked at the links you provided, so started to follow the instructions.  Amazingly my correct folder of catalog backups is now populated with my most recent backups.  (And no .lock file)  However, there is now a new problem!  I went through the steps of opening the correct folder - extracting from the zipped folder and now it tells me the file is not writable and cannot be opened. I went into the permissions and checked that. 

                   

                  Finally, by trying a couple of times, extracting from the zipped file, finally got the file to open in LR.  And my whole LR setup is the way it should be.  I do not understand why all this happened, but unless it all falls apart again, I am OK.

                   

                  Thank you.

                  • 6. Re: LR shut down with "error" message, now my catalog is gone.  What can I do now?
                    trshaner Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    nothinglikeit wrote:

                     

                    As for the empty folder, I am very careful to back up my Catalog into folders labeled with the current month. The correct backup showed up in a different month's folder even though I had this month's folder as the default place to back up.

                    There's no need to place the backups in separate folders by month. LR 6 and CC 2015 automatically creates a folder with YYY-MM-DD naming that contains the Catalog Backup ZIP file. All of my catalog backups go into a single folder named 'Lightroom CC Catalog Backups. I then backup these files to a 2nd external USB drive. I try to keep things simple.

                    nothinglikeit wrote:

                     

                    Finally, by trying a couple of times, extracting from the zipped file, finally got the file to open in LR. And my whole LR setup is the way it should be. I do not understand why all this happened, but unless it all falls apart again, I am OK.

                     

                    From your troubleshooting steps it difficult to determine exactly why this happened, but I'll take a guess. When LR shutdown while editing in PS it left the lock file open, which prevented you from opening the current "working" catalog. When you tried to use the LR backups they wouldn't open probably due to a Permissions issue. We've had numerous reports with Permissions being set to 'Read Only' after a Window 10 or Mac OS X upgrade. Did you recently install an OS upgrade?

                     

                    Anyhow, I'm glad to hear you got it resolved.

                    • 7. Re: LR shut down with "error" message, now my catalog is gone.  What can I do now?
                      nothinglikeit Level 1

                      Yes, I am very glad the problem is resolved.  Perhaps it was because I shut down the computer overnight, then started it up again the next day.  It is amazing how many problems are resolved this way!

                       

                      I know it is not necessary to make folders for the backups, but it is for my own convenience.  When I am going to delete older backups, I can delete a whole month at a time.

                       

                      As for installing an OS upgrade, that is done automatically, so I do not know if that occurred.  It is entirely possible. 

                       

                      How all this happened is probably along the lines you guessed.  I did see a lock file when I first tried to open the catalog, but did not know what it was.  I also checked out the Permissions and made sure they were not changed. 

                       

                      Thank you for your help.  I have saved the article about file corruption in case this happens again, so I can refer to it!  I'll click on the "Correct Answer" button so others will see that I don't need help.

                       

                      Have a great weekend!