7 Replies Latest reply on Mar 13, 2018 7:58 PM by DavePinMinn

    Making sequence numbers persistent?

    DavePinMinn Level 1

      This seems like something that would have been asked, but I'm not seeing it.........


      LR Classic CC running on a PC.


      I'm NOT renaming images during import 'cause it's a major PITA.  Once I've been through and culled the images, and figured out the HDR, panorama, and focus stack sets, I"m renaming in Lightroom.  I've created a couple presets that make it a LITTLE less onerous, but one problem I still have is the sequence numbers...


      Let's say I have a series of X images in a focus stack.  I'm renaming them to be yymmdd_f<nnn>_sequence number.  So a renamed image might be

      180301_f003_1234.  A set of 8 images would be 180301_f003 (the focus stack ID) _(1234 through 1241).  In this case the "003" is custom text and the 1234...  is the "Start Number"...  So that set works and ends with sequence 1241.  On to the NEXT set.  Unfortunately, the 003 is still there, so I know I need to change it to 004, but the sequence number is STILL 1234.  It doesn't update so it shows the LAST sequence number used.  Which is very cumbersome since I have to look at the LAST set, get the ending number, remember it, and enter it into the preset for the next set.


      It's not the most inefficient thing in LR, but it's clunky.  Is there any way to have the rename keep track of the last sequence used?  Can I use some OTHER number?  In the Edit, there are Sequence #, Image # and Total #.  I've tried all of them and it LOOKS like image number always increments from 1 and doesn't allow me to set it as a "Start Number" and Total # always appears to be "0007", which I have no idea what that means.


      Changing the Import Number and Photos Imported in the Catalog settings doesn't appear to have any effect on the Start Number in Rename...


      Is this just another one of those "can't change this behavior" in Lightroom?

        • 1. Re: Making sequence numbers persistent?
          richardplondon Level 4

          "Total #" I think, denotes the number of images within a given batch that is submitted for renaming.


          So you might make a naming scheme which - in addition to other things - included 1of7, 2of7 etc when there were 7 images, and 1of4, 2of4 etc where there were 4 images. I believe the tokens used to do that would be "image#" then custom text "of" then "total#".


          Personally I prefer re-using the original camera image numbers ("original number suffix") rather than having LR maintain its own number sequence. Those camera assigned numbers are intrinsically unique and chronological (provided the camera's configured so it doesn't restart its image numbering with each freshly formatted memory card). In any case, the date info would resolve any confusion even if camera numbering were to repeat the same, e,g due to using more than one camera body.


          Oh: perhaps your focus stack groupings can be represented virtually, through image stacking? If there is no overriding reason to physically rename files, I personally like to keep such things to a minimum. So much more efficient for backup etc if files are unchanging.


          Alternatively you might first enter a focus stack reference (or whatever) into a metadata field, such as Title, of the images within each such batch as you review those. You can then incorporate a reference to the contents of that metadata field, into a file renaming system. You wouldn't have to interact any further with each renaming set; just recall a previously defined renaming 'preset' and use that as-it-is each time.


          And you may find this very small investment in entering metadata, has circumvented the practical need to physically rename, at all (grin).

          • 2. Re: Making sequence numbers persistent?
            DavePinMinn Level 1



            Yes the camera numbering sequence would work - EXCEPT I shoot three different bodies.  There have been collisions.


            As for using LRs stacking - it's NOT real.  It doesn't go into the metadata, which means it doesn't transfer between computers unless I take the whole catalog as far as I know.  And if there is ever a catalog problem and it has to be recreated all the stacks, pick flags and collections are gone.  So, that's a non-starter.


            The point of having information in the filename to denote what type of series it is, is to make it as easy as possible to identify all the members of a series, quickly, easily and accurately.  And from OUTSIDE Lightroom since some software doesn't have a plug-in.


            In any case, I still have the problem of non-persistent sequence numbers...

            • 3. Re: Making sequence numbers persistent?
              Just Shoot Me Adobe Community Professional

              DavePinMinn  wrote




              Yes the camera numbering sequence would work - EXCEPT I shoot three different bodies.  There have been collisions.



              Most all cameras made recently, and I talking from 10 years ago, have the option to name the first 3 or 4 character used in the cameras file naming.

              When I owned 2 M8 Leica cameras I had one set to to record the file number with L100### and the other to be L200###.

              With the 2 Fuji cameras I now have, one a X-E2 and the other a X-T2, I have the files named as XE2##### and XT2#####.

              So no 2 images files ever have the same name.

              This also helps to see which images came from which camera without having to look at the Metadata. It's right there in the image file name.

              • 4. Re: Making sequence numbers persistent?
                richardplondon Level 4

                I can't explain why the LR sequence numbering isn't working properly for you - I have in the past tested this as working OK (though that was for renaming at import rather than subsequently).


                One way to reduce the collision of image numbering between different bodies, is to artificially "ratchet up" the image number on each one, so they fall in separate ranges. Depends at what point the camera rolls its count back to zero, but you might set one body to work from zero, another to work from 30,000 and another to work from 60,000 say. You would still get a repeat eventually, but only so separated in time as to be of little concern.


                Details vary but one can usually persuade a camera to continue its internal numbering from (say) 30,000 by taking a single picture on a camera card, artificially renaming that in the computer as if it had been picture 29,999 then putting the card back in the camera. The next exposure taken by that camera will look at the pre-existing photos, adopt 30,000 and things will continue on from there. To maintain this separation one would want to practice some "hygiene" as to re-inserting cards containing images taken by a different camera, e.g. always emptying or formatting before use once the ingest is confirmed OK. Otherwise camera A could be put into the same numbering range as camera B.

                • 5. Re: Making sequence numbers persistent?
                  DavePinMinn Level 1

                  OK. thanks all.  It appears I'm not going to get an answer to my question, and while I enjoy the suggestions to change a naming scheme that's worked perfectly for years and is on tens of thousands of images, I"m not likely to do so.


                  I like my nomenclature.  It works.  It worked perfectly in Bridge.  I'm just trying to make Lightroom work as well.


                  And BTW, it does generally work when renaming at import.  I don't generally rename at import.

                  • 6. Re: Making sequence numbers persistent?
                    Just Shoot Me Adobe Community Professional

                    Well Bridge is a completely different program than LR, as you know.

                    You could still use Bridge for your renaming and once that is done the way you like import the images into LR. Yes it is another step.


                    Best to you.

                    • 7. Re: Making sequence numbers persistent?
                      DavePinMinn Level 1

                      That's pretty much what I've been doing for the last 8 years...  Initial culling and examination in Bridge 'cause it's so much faster, and all the renaming 'cause it's so much easier.  Then importing the remaining images into Lightroom with the second copy to the backup - that way I DON'T have 10,000 images going into LR and being copied to the backup when only 50 are worth a darn.


                      Seems kind of pathetic to have to do it that way in 2018, but it's a whole lot easier to handle series' in Bridge.