My issue is a bit similar to this but exactly the same.
Here's the chronology.
I did not check the box to store files locally, in the advanced section.
I've migrated the old Lightroom Classic Catalogue successfully.
Then I imported pictures from the external hard drive to the collection.
- At this point, I changed the local storage location to the external hard drive because on my MacBook there's not enough space for the storage.
All the photos were successfully uploaded to the cloud.
Here the problems started.
When I disconnected the external hard drive the Lightroom was showing an error message that the originals are offline.
I've reset then the 'local storage location' in the Preferences, so it is located on my MacBook now.
At the moment LR CC is busy moving the photos from the external hard drive to the MacBook.
'store files locally' is still NOT checked and the files ARE in the cloud
What I want is that my whole archive is stored in the cloud, and whenever I need a particular photo I would like to be able to download the original from the cloud. I thought that this was exactly the way it should work.
What I don't understand is why LR CC is now copying the files that are already uploaded to the cloud to my MacBook when the checkbox 'store files locally' is unchecked, and how can I make it stop?
Maybe better addressed in the Lr Classic forum.
Why? I don't use this app.
What I did after posting here is 1) checking the box 'save originals locally' and restarting; 2) unchecking it and restarting LR again. The 40 Gb catalog with pictures from the year 2012 that was created while I was writing this post has disappeared.
Eventually, LR completed the operation that it was calling 'moving photos to MacBook' and now seems to be working as it supposed to.