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5 Messages


134 Points

Fri, Dec 28, 2018 6:59 PM

Lightroom Classic: Can't import pics. says "importing files..." for ever, with no progress

Mac 10.13.6. LR (not the mobile cut down version but the proper desktop version, no idea what it is called now) 8.1. 
Never had this problem before for last 4 years using LR.
Trying to import files from SD card in USB 3 card reader. Can see and copy the files no problem in finder. Have plenty of space on HD.  LR stil responsive, and can cancel the import.
Tried several times- always same result.

Building smart preview is off (as this causes imports to fail since about 6 months), add to collection is off. No renaming or "apply during import" options set.


294 Messages


4.5K Points

2 years ago

You're not the first one to report this lately with importing from SD cards.   If you haven't seen this in the prior four years I would say you're also very lucky, as this is a well-documented problem with LR and memory cards.  It is not necessarily, however, a problem with LR.  My research has led me to conclude it is an issue with the imherent latency problems of memory cards which were never designed to be used continuously with a high duty cycle.  They are designed to be used in bursts.

LR doesn't understand this behavior, and will either leave images on the cards (no import) or just drop them into the ether never to be seen again.  I haven't heard anyone report that nothing was imported and the import just seemed to idle.

The workaround—which should be anyone's standard practice IMHO—is to perform a copy or a verified move using the operation system from your card reader to a hard drive and then import into Lightroom.  The OS will not lose your files or fail to perform the copy/move operation as these are kernal functions.  The kernalunderstands the latency of the memory cards and will not draw files faster than the card can deliver as the kernal was designed to control all I/O devices (such as cards).

I cannot comment on the failure of Smart Previews as I never use them, but I do not recall reading any other posts about this as an issue.  Strange.

Adobe Administrator


9.1K Messages


126.8K Points

2 years ago

Since things are responsive and this is a relatively new issue, let's first see if your preference file is the culprit. 

A Preference File will survive a Lightroom uninstall/reinstall. Sometimes weird behavior is corrected/cured by resetting the preferences. 

Reset Procedure:

1. Close Lightroom.
2. Hold down [Alt/Opt]+[Shift] while restarting Lightroom. 
3. Overwrite the Preferences when prompted by the dialog.
4. Close Lightroom.
5. Restart Lightroom.

Does the behavior continue after resetting the preferences?

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