7 Replies Latest reply on Jun 25, 2017 11:48 PM by john beardsworth

    Avoiding Mass Editing Mistakes


      Last night after about 3 hours of editing photos from a shoot yesterday, I accidently changed my keyboard to arabic, and while I was trying to use various shortcut keys I normally use while editing, I somehow applied an edit to all photos in the collection. At least this is my theory. I didn't notice the problem until about 10 minutes after I realized that the shortcut keys were not working because my keyboard was in Arabic.


      Luckily the ratings and the crops were still in place, but all other edits were changed. I was extremely frustrated, and couldn't figure out how to reproduce the mistake, or more importantly, how to undo the mistake.Capture.PNG



      I'm including a screenshot in case this a known glitch.


      How did this happen? How can you apply edits to a whole collection without knowing it?
      If you do do this, is there a way to undo it?
      Is it possible this was a problem with sync? As I'm not sure what happened, I was wondering if sync was applying these edits.
      Is it possible that somehow the setting were changed as a default setting for the collection? (I don't know if this is possible, so I assume it was me accidentally pasting the edits to a selected group of pictures.)


      Obviously I am bit of noob to the finer details of how to use lightroom. Perhaps some other noobs in the future can learn along with me.


      Thanks for any help.

        • 1. Re: Avoiding Mass Editing Mistakes
          john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          To correct the situation, go through all the affected photos individually in Develop. In the History panel, examine the recent steps and go back to the step before you incorrectly synced the edits. So it's one by one.


          How to prevent it? By taking care to watch what you are doing. If you actually want LR to edit multiple images at once, it has the power to do so, but that power is not always good if you are unaware of it. For example, when multiple images are selected, the Previous button changes to Sync or even to AutoSync. So keep an eye on this. If it's Sync, you would have to press it and go through a dialog box before multiple images are adjusted. If you have enabled AutoSync, your adjustments do apply to all selected images. This is the fastest way to work in LR, but causes your problem if you hadn't noticed it. I leave it in this mode all the time, but because of the risk I also keep open the filmstrip as a further indicator of what I am doing. So in short, you need to concentrate and take care.

          • 2. Re: Avoiding Mass Editing Mistakes
            bob frost Level 3

            Hi John, I seem to remember using a plugin by the late Rob Cole that enabled bulk reversal of unwanted edits. Was it called ScrewAutoSync? Have you not been able to produce a similar plugin? I've lost the instructions for my old version.


            Bob Frost

            • 3. Re: Avoiding Mass Editing Mistakes
              john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              Hi Bob, you are right about that plugin's name and I think I recall it hacked the SQL of a copy of the catalogue. It wasn't a method approved by Adobe, and there's no way for a plugin to achieve the same thing without going down that path!

              • 4. Re: Avoiding Mass Editing Mistakes
                bob frost Level 3

                Mmmm! Are you restricted to doing things that Adobe approve of? Over the years I'm sure I've done lots of things to my catalogs (using DB Browser for SQLite and earlier versions)  that Adobe wouldn't approve of!! In the past it was often the only way to get round the limitations that Adobe forced on us. Nowadays the program is a bit better behaved, but I used Rob's plugin not so long ago to get rid of the 'Reset' that Lr still puts on Develop history if you read a file that has metadata added from outside, and I used another one of his to find all the images with 'print' in their history. I miss his ingenuity.


                Bob frost

                • 5. Re: Avoiding Mass Editing Mistakes
                  john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                  Maybe there is some small print, Bob, but I did take care to say hacking the SQL "wasn't an approved method" (unlike the SDK) rather than saying it was prohibited or restricted. Obviously though, you can see the slant I put on it! Furthermore, the database's structure is not documented, has changed at various points, and stores data not in neat tables with relational integrity but as text blocks that are ugly to parse in SQL since they are Lua expressions ready to be parsed by Lua. You also can't query the active catalogue. So I think one has to think carefully before distributing any plugin based on SQL hacks, and I've chosen to steer clear.



                  • 6. Re: Avoiding Mass Editing Mistakes
                    ProfJV Level 1

                    Thanks for the great answer! What's the best source to learn about autosync pros and cons?

                    • 7. Re: Avoiding Mass Editing Mistakes
                      john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                      I'm not sure I've seen anything that is more concise than my previous paragraph.


                      One important point is that people should leave AutoSync enabled all the time, or never use it. It is the fastest way to work (you just have to count the clicks), but problems like yours tend to happen when people forget or are unaware that it is enabled. If AutoSync is always enabled, you soon learn from painful experience that you must keep an eye on what images are selected. Two weeks ago I actually made the mistake of not doing so, though I was able to Undo, but I can't remember the previous time. I am sure only a minority work with AutoSync always enabled, but I recommend it if you shoot a lot of pictures and are able to adapt to it.