Lightroom: How do I clean up duplicate images on my hard drive?

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I have a lot of dubblicate pictures on the same hard disk and want to clean it up. My problem is that I don't know wich one is in the LR catalog. Anyone have an ide what to do?
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LarsS

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Posted 7 years ago

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Laura Shoe

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This isn't ideal, Lars, because you would lose all your work on the photos, but one option is to:
1. Out in Finder/Explorer, delete all but one copy.
2. This will possibly break the link to the LR version -- in LR it will have a question mark. Delete (i.e. Remove) these from LR.
3. Reimport the folders. Whatever isn't yet in LR will be imported.
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Rob Cole

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LarsS

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Thank's Rob, but that was't my problem. My problem is thatI have a lot of dubblicate pictures on the same hard disk and want to clean it up. My problem is that I don't know wich one is in the LR catalog.
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Rob Cole

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After reading more closely, I see what you meant...

Do the duplicates have the same filename, but are in different directories? Or, may they have different filenames too?

i.e. what about them, exactly, is the same, and what about them is different, exactly?

Could they be duplicates in the same folder but with different filenames?

Its hard to know exactly where to aim, without knowing exactly what one is trying to hit...
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Ryan Pirsten

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I use a friendly software DuplicateFilesDeleter . It is really useful. 
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Robert Cullen

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I do not recommend the use of ANY software for deleting duplicates unless it is a suitable Plugin for Lightroom.
If you run DuplicateFilesDeleter and delete files that are referenced in a Lightroom catalog, then you have just created a mess of 'missing' files in the Catalog; another problem to try and solve.
This one IS a LR plugin-
http://www.bungenstock.de/teekesselchen/
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LarsS

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Thank's Laura What do you say about using export as a catalog? and then delete all of it and create a new folder with the exported catalog. I don't know if that is workin.?
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Rob Cole

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This sounds like a good idea. If you export all to a new catalog it will copy over all pictures in catalog (this used to be optional but I it seems mandatory now - picture files are copied).

So all others are duplicates not in catalog, and can be "quarantined" (saved in case of mistake) or deleted.

Obviously take some care, but yeah - this will work...
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john beardsworth

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Import them all into Lightroom, choosing the option to add them where they are, and sort them out in Liightroom. Disc space is cheap, so resolve duplicates over time, when you encounter them and are certain they are duplicates.

Also take a big backup so you can afford to be more brutal deleting files.

Ask too if it really matters that you have these duplicates. Get things right from now on, and tidy up the past as and when you get time.
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LarsS

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Thank's John I will try to ignore the duplicate (if I can)
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Rob Cole

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Lars,

Have you already embarked? - Have you decided to take this approach?

Rob
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john beardsworth

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Lars, just follow my advice here. Ideas such as exporting catalogues and using plugins can help those of us who think we know what we are doing, but are only more likely to confuse the situation you have described.

Just make sure you've got complete backups of all the images and of your catalogue. Use the Folders panel's synchronise right click command to bring everything into your catalogue where you can see it all at once and can easily sort and compare and be certain you've found a duplicate.

Remove these duplicates as and when they cause you a real problem, not in a big bang, and focus your efforts on getting all new work right.

John
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Rob Cole

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Lars,

Having a catalog full of duplicates is not something I would wish on anyone - but to each their own...

As Laura pointed out, you will have to disable "Don't Import Suspected Duplicates" to be able to do it. - makes me shutter just thinking about it...

Rob
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john beardsworth

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Yes, Laura's point was right and makes sense. Once everything is visible in Lightroom, the duplicates will be easier to sort out.
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Laura Shoe

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Actually I agree with John on this. In the Import dialog on the right side, I would uncheck "Don't Import Suspected Duplicates".
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Rob Cole

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I'd write a plugin to delete (or "quarantine") the duplicates not in the catalog, if I knew how to tell what is a duplicate. I would not foul up my catalog with a bunch of duplicates to sort out later... - as I see it, that just makes the problem worse! - will the real ... please stand up?...
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LarsS

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I can tell what is a duplicate, but I can't write a plugin. It was more than 30 y sens I wrote a program. Can u help me?
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Rob Cole

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Please see questions asked above in comment that begins "After reading more closely...". The answers dictate how much work such a plugin will be. It could take 5 minutes, or it could take 5 months...
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Laura Shoe

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I think importing all the duplicates is a very workable solution. After this go to All Photographs in the Catalog panel, and do a sort by capture date (specify this in the toolbar below the grid). Unless the metadata was stripped out of the dups, this will put all the duplicates next to each other.
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Rob Cole

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If it were me, I'd take care of the duplicates immediately, regardless of which route chosen - details available upon request, but in a nutshell - duplicates are a ticking time-bomb for me, and I'd rather disable the bomb than clean up the mess after explosion. Your mileage may vary...

PS - If choosing this route, then once the duplicates are in Lightroom, that dup checker plugin referenced above may help, in case capture-date proximity doesn't quite cut it...

Good luck Lars, and make sure you let us know how you fare...

Rob
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Sandra Christiansen

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I have multiple copies of the same photo downloaded from my iPhone. How do I find and eleminate duplicate photos from the library?

How can I keep some photos on my phone and not have them download "repetes" to the library?

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Lightroom: How do I find and remove duplicate downloads of a photo?.
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Voinova Irina

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Kevin Brown

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You have some Duplicate Files on your computer which hampers your memory space. Just use "DuplicateFilesDeleter".If you use this software you will be get comfortable.
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Stephen Soukup

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this article / video may be of help: https://laurashoe.com/clean-up-your-lightroom-mess/