4 Replies Latest reply on Mar 9, 2017 1:10 PM by John R Lee

    Imported files into wrong directory, cannot move them inside Lightroom

    John R Lee Level 1

      I have a large lightroom catalog of all of my photographs.  I organize them by year, and have Lightroom configured to import them and create folders for them based on the day the photos were taken.





      I've had a very difficult time trying to manage photos from my Samsung phone via lightroom, and recently, while finally importing half a year's worth of mobile pictures, I realized I had accidentally imported a substantial number of photos from 2016 into my 2017 lightroom folder.  Because I've tagged ALL of these photos, I'd prefer to move them into my 2016 folder through lightroom, but I'm finding this to be impossible. 





      I take many pictures with my DSLR, and so there is a folder for nearly every day of the year in my 2016 folder.  Lightroom generated duplicate folders with these dates when it imported my mobile photos into my 2017 folder.  Because the folders I want to move from the 2017 folder have the same names as folders in my 2016 folder, Lightroom will not allow me to move the folders.  In short, there is no way for me to merge the contents of these folders into my 2016 folder.





      Does anyone know of a workaround?  The only option I can think of is to completely erase all of the imported mobile photos and then select my 2016 folder and re-import them.  This would mean throwing a few days worth of tagging completely out the window and starting from scratch.  I find this totally unacceptable since all I want to do is merge the contents of a few dozen folders.  Is there really no way to do this inside lightroom?  This is what computers are for, after all.

        • 1. Re: Imported files into wrong directory, cannot move them inside Lightroom
          F. McLion Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          It's not LR that stops you from doing this, it's the OS. There is no way 2 folders with the very exact name can exist side-by-side within the same folder.

          You need to select all of the images in a folder (mark folder, mark any image in grid view and then hit Ctrl+A) you want to move and drag-and-drop them to the new folder.

          • 2. Re: Imported files into wrong directory, cannot move them inside Lightroom
            John R Lee Level 1

            Thank you for the response.


            That is the procedure I worked out last night, but it is extremely frustrating as there are about 130 folders that I have to move.  It will still take me close to an hour to scroll up and down that one little sidebar from year to year and do this.  Keep in mind the folders are listed down that bar, and there are about 320 in the 2016 folder and another 160 or so in my 2017 folder, so it takes several seconds just to scroll up and down to find each folder.  This will also make it VERY easy for me to mistakenly drop folder contents in the wrong spot, since I'm going to have to do it over 100 times instead of just once.


            I understand not being able to put the same folder name in the same location twice, however my OS will allow me to merge contents into one folder when duplicate folder names are detected.  It is infuriating that lightroom does not allow this basic file management and windows explorer does.  This should be a basic feature.  It's ridiculous that I will have to manage every folder one at a time.  Why can't I shift click all of the folders I want to move, drag them up, drop them and merge when there are duplicate names?  Windows has allowed this for a decade.


            Still, since it took about 3 hours to tag the photos it'll be faster to do a few hundred click and drags than it will be to retag everything.  It's just annoying that something your basic file browser can do in a few seconds will take me close to an hour to do via lightroom.

            • 3. Re: Imported files into wrong directory, cannot move them inside Lightroom
              richardplondon Level 4

              It's not such a big job.


              Say you have two different folder locations - A and B.

              And inside each of those, there are subfolders called 01, 02, 03 etc - the same names repeating in both places, but with different pictures inside.


              And those are all imported to Lightroom. So Lightroom shows both A and B in its Folders panel. And you want some of what's in B, to now be in A.


              • Close LR and use your operating system transfer the desired contents of B to join what's already in A. Wherever the same folder name exists, files will merge - provided the file names themselves are unique.
              • Open LR: all that stuff is still indicated as living in B, but now marked "not found".
              • Right-click immediately within B, on just one of these folders which you have just moved externally - and choose "find missing folder". Then browse to the actual new location of that folder, inside A. LR warns you about merging images - that is in this case, what you actively want.
              • Done! Lightroom will also automatically fix, correspondingly, all of the other temporarily invalid paths, for all of the other images and folders, which find themselves "in the same case" as this one folder which you have just readdressed.
              2 people found this helpful
              • 4. Re: Imported files into wrong directory, cannot move them inside Lightroom
                John R Lee Level 1

                Thank you!  I thought there was a way to do this, and this is the way.  I had to do it once before but it was several years ago.


                Still, it's frustrating that this isn't a feature of the file management system inside of lightroom.