9 Replies Latest reply on Nov 15, 2018 7:01 AM by Theresa J

    Moved photos outside Lightroom..

    Alex 12



      I understand this has been covered to death BUT i can't find the answer to this situation anywhere..


      I have all my photos on an external drive, i just wanted to get rid of a few folders that were inside my external hard drive that served no purpose, to tidy it up..For instance the hierarchy went Lightroom , Lightroom , Originals..and then my standard folder structure started...so i literally moved all the folders back into a hierarchy that was simply Lightroom then my folder structure, eliminating two empty folders..


      I used to have that hard drive in the folder menu in Lightroom with all of my folder structure there but now its gone. My catalogue is all there with the right amount of images in the top left but they all have exclamation marks above them.


      Ive done this before and it worked just fine but now when i try and locate the missing photo, i find it and tick the 'find close photos' button but it just finds the ones from that particular folder. The hard drive has appeared at the side again with the two folders i have located underneath. Do i have to locate every single folder?? really??

      I have about 37000 photos in my catalogue in a date order system


      I have the photos in the same folders on the hard drive, just missing a couple of folders that were pointless..I have the catalogue showing inside lightroom...Can i not just relink them simply to keep the folder hierarchy the same as in my hard drive?


      I tried hitting the plus button on the folders tab, found the hard drive with all the images and hit ADD instead of copy ..it started to import the images into lightroom with the correct folder structure too but my catalogue number was going up from 37000 to 40000 etc, also none of the images coming in had any ratings or adjustments id made before so i stopped it..


      Note ; I could always re make the folder system inside the hard drive to what it was before and i did a catalogue back up just before this.


      Please help!

        • 1. Re: Moved photos outside Lightroom..
          JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          You could try right clicking on that topmost Lightroom folder and choosing the option to update the folder location. Then you could browse to the external hard drive and choose that folder in the window that displays and see if that clears up your synchronization problem.

          • 2. Re: Moved photos outside Lightroom..
            Rikk Flohr - LR Ecosystem Adobe Employee

            I think you meant to post this in the Lightroom Classic CC forum. This is the cloud-based Lightroom CC forum and this version of the software doesn't expose folders to the user.

            • 3. Re: Moved photos outside Lightroom..
              Alex 12 Level 1



              There is no folder structure in lightroom anymore, thats the problem. It has vanished, if it was still there i would do this. The catalogue is there in the catalogue section but it just says 37000 with no folder structure

              Thanks anyway!

              • 4. Re: Moved photos outside Lightroom..
                Alex 12 Level 1

                Ah, my bad i'll move it. Thanks

                • 5. Re: Moved photos outside Lightroom..
                  Rikk Flohr - LR Ecosystem Adobe Employee

                  Please go to Help>System Info… and get us your installed version number so we can determine which version of Lightroom you are using.

                  • 7. Re: Moved photos outside Lightroom..
                    Rikk Flohr - LR Ecosystem Adobe Employee

                    That is your Mac OS version number - we need the Lightroom version number.


                    Click on Lightroom to give it focus.

                    Go to Help>System Info… to obtain this.

                    • 8. Re: Moved photos outside Lightroom..
                      davidg36166309 Level 4

                      A couple of ways to get the moved folder in your LlightRoom catalog folder structure


                      Method 3, and I am spit balling on this is probably the one to go with


                      Others may have more pro advice.


                      Possible method 1

                      In Library Module


                      Over on the left, the Folders Panel, click on the +

                      Select Add folder, navigate to the folder in question

                      Select it

                      And you are about to be in the import process.


                      One big huge problem, well your edits exist???


                      Possible Method 2.

                      In Library Module


                      Over on the left, the Folders Panel. The first entry. Is that the folder your catalog is in? If not, right click, select Show parent. Oh, I am assuming that your images in a sub folder in the folder your catalog is in. When the top of your folder hierarchy is displayed, right click on it and select Synchronize Folder (in the Sync dialog, Import is an option, yes, no, not a clue).


                      One big huge problem, well your edits exist???


                      By the way, this reoccurring issue of edits coming over, if XMP had been on, then perhaps you would have gotten away with this.




                      Possible method 3


                      Outside of LightRoom, put the file structure back the way it was. The empty folders can be ignored (by empty I meen no sub folders, no images, no previews, no nothing) Cross fingers.


                      If you luck out and the catalog now behaves, and your edits show up, Go and play the Lotto, you may be that lucky.


                      Then, from within Lightroom, create folders, subfloders, move folders, move images to those folders, as you see fit.

                      • 9. Re: Moved photos outside Lightroom..
                        Theresa J Adobe Community Professional

                        Which Lightroom are you using, Lightroom Classic or Lightroom CC? Lightroom CC puts all of your images into the cloud so there is no longer a connection to the folder structure on your external hard drive. It’s sounds like maybe this is where the problem is.