Lightroom: Ability to use relative paths to images

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  • Updated 6 months ago
  • (Edited)
Update Lightroom so it can use relative paths if a disk is renamed or if a library is moved.

Software which restricts basic Finder usage is painful in every workflow. Apple were forced to update the way events work in Finalcut X and even InDesign will automaticlly find missing links if the path to just one link is updated - quick and easy.

I'm trying to rename a drive which contains my library but have had to change it back as "Update folder location" doesn't work at the root level. After a good hour, I'm still sifting through search results to find an answer - this all seems unnecessarily painful right?

Cheers
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Ben

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Posted 6 years ago

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Steve Sprengel, Champion

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Do you mean you have many photo-folders or even individual photos directly at the root level?

I always have my photo-folders down at least one folder from the root of a drive, and then the Update Folder Location corrects the situation by only changing the highest common parent folder's path.
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Ben

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Thanks for the reply - this is solved thank you.

The images are organised inside date directories, and when I tried updating them I was having to do it for each directory - but I noticed that many directories/photos were missing?

But since changing the name back, Lightroom now sees all the directories - so I changed the name again and used "Update Folder" on the library folder and it worked.

Cheers
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Steve Sprengel, Champion

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It is optimal to Update-Location for the highest/closest-to-the-root folders, first, otherwise if you do one lower down, that will block the higher-up Update from working completely, I think. It isn't clear from your description why things didn't work for you, originally.

The issue with making things relative is that each top-level folder could be from a different device, and so there is nothing to be relative to. Obviously lower-level folders are relative to the higher-up ones, so in effect LR does have relative paths, already, if you choose to update the highest one, first.
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Nack Athens

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I am on the go and work at a couple of different places with different environments (PCs/Macs). I use external hard drive to store all photos and catalogs. Unfortunately, I have to pick the top folder and drill through to the last browsed folder in "Library" every time I plug-in to a different system.
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Ian Cervantez

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I still think this is a good idea. I sync my Lightroom directory over to cloud services (like Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.) and because those are held within my home folder the application breaks when I open Lightroom on a different computer (since that computer's home path for my user account is different). If Lightroom were storing relative paths, then syncing in this manner would work successfully.

My photo library is larger than the mere 20GB that creative cloud allows me - so syncing the Lightroom directory is my next best solution for cloud backup.
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TangCanada

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I support relative paths... absolute paths are a pain in de azz when moving drives from one box to another.

Especially if you import on one computer then take home to continue work on another computer the image paths are different...

much easier if LR used relative paths, then all one has to do is plug in drive and open the catalog file and pictures are then referenced relative to the catalog file and not to the root drive of the computer which now neccitates relinking.
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Johan Elzenga, Champion

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Lightroom can already use relative paths, if you set it up as follows: Place your images in a subfolder that is located inside the Lightroom catalog folder. That is what 'Export as Catalog' does, and relative paths is exactly why it does that. If the images are inside the catalog folder, Lightroom uses relative paths and so you can move or copy the exported catalog around freely without losing the connection to the images.