Lightroom Classic: Import is slow after updating

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  • Problem
  • Updated 9 months ago
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  • (Edited)
Importing in LIghtroom is  Painfully slow in Classic.  After I upgraded to Classic I am seeing importing going from 2-3 minutes to 10-20 minutes.

Sometimes it takes 5 minutes for anything to start importing. 

This is now not a professional option with this decrease in importing speed.
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Jared Cruce

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  • frustrated

Posted 2 years ago

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Deborah Albert

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Nothing seems to be working in LR classic. I am looking for alternative software!


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David Martin

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Yep.  After the October 2015 "upgrade" debacle. I accept anything Adobe tells me (seels me) with a bag of salt, and never accept the upgrade unless and until the uncountable bugs have been worked out by you beta-testers; i.e., paid users of the application.

Adobe no longer tests their software; they dump it out to paid subscribers: i.e., slaves, for t us to figure out what doesn't work.

Sorry, but I don't do that.  Neither should you.  Find out how to back up to the previous version and let this be a lesson to you: Never trust Adobe.  Never.  Ever.
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Deborah Albert

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How do I go back?
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Deborah Albert

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Don't want to lose the very tedious work I have done since update.....
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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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Official Response
Engineering is working on a fix for slow import.

If you need to rollback, instructions are here: https://helpx.adobe.com/lightroom/kb/roll-back-to-prior-update.html
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Victoria Bampton - Lightroom Queen, Champion

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Yeah, I've seen a 7 million. I haven't tried importing into it though.

> Does this guy know when to stop?
Historically, no. He's a very knowledgeable guy and my go-to for color management, but knowing when to give up has never been his strongest point.
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dmeephd

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I've seen larger image databases in the medical imaging industry, but none were using LR; not even sure if LR can import DICOM images which is what that industry has standardized on.  In any event, the underlying database was always a full relational DB such as MS SQL, Oracle, or DB2.  Part of the performance issue has to be centered around Adobes' use of SQLlite.

However, this still does not explain the serious performance degradation with LR 7.  My catalog has only grown by about 20k images since moving over to LR7, but the slow import process has been present from Day One.

It is not consistent.  Some imports go so fast its like the good old days; most are very slow.  I tried with another catalog which had about 20 images in it.  The catalog came from one of the LR guru books.  Importing (after the catalog was converted to the LR7 format) was still slow.  And the dng ghosting could not be replicated, but then again, it hasn't manifested itself in my main catalog either.

LR is also a memory hog, even while idle.  Overnight or during the day it will gobble up 75GB of RAM.  Frankly, I've never seen ANY program on my MacPro (and I've got the DxO suite, the FranzisPhoto suite, and others) use that much memory!  Not even Photoshop.

What's going on here, do you think?
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Victoria Bampton - Lightroom Queen, Champion

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I wish I knew David. 
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dmeephd

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Well, if you're befuddled then we're all in the soup, aren't we?  LOL

Earlier I started up LR6 and loaded the original catalog (which I kept).  I'm importing a folder from a 20TB G-Tech Thunderbolt-connected drive which has 989 images, Sony .arw raw files and matching jpegs.  The raws are from the a7RIII and they're huge, around 65MB each.

The folder is a copy which LR7 has not seen.  The import started 20 minutes ago and...well, it just finished importing as I type and 1:1 previews are now being built.

Same hardware, same OS, same everything except the version of LR.  Based on the progress bar, I'm estimating that LR6 is at least 300% faster than LR7 for the very same import.

And let's bear in mind that the LR6 version of the catalog is 37GB, versus 26-ish for the LR7 one.

As Bugs Bunny oft times said: "It just don't add up!"
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ctj71081

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Everything slowed down with LR 7, and I'm not the only one with this observation—this forum is filled with this complaint.

Just to pile on here, I have this problem as well and have been following this thread for months (maybe right after it started). My catalog is ~15,000 DNGs, so nowhere near the volume mentioned here, and when I import a shot (usually ~50 - 100 images), I have to click "import" and then go do something else for about 20 minutes while my computer churns through the process.

I'm anxiously awaiting resolution.
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Deborah Albert

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Thanks
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Deborah Albert

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Will I lose all recent work?
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Shai Ben-Naphtali

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Deborah, I can totally feel your pain... I think that Capture One is a good candidate.
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holly strauss

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Alien skin Exposure 3 is also good
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Shai Ben-Naphtali

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But who would want to break free from the Adobe CC total package just to pay for another software? We're already paying for one, now pay for two?
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Michael Hach

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I've bought into ON1 Photo RAW and find it quite good. It's only two years old but the support is great, unlike Adobe who like to direct you to the FAQ or Forums pages rather than putting some one on your problem using Live chat.

Also, DxO plug-in has stopping importing back into LR since the latest LR update and the developers at DxO cant figure out why that's happening. ON1 plug-in works fine , though.
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PAUL U

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Agreed! Adobe is dropped the ball. Its quite obvious they care little for their customers.
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Boaz Yoffe

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Deborah, please check the preview generation, it should be on embedded, this will speed up things.
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Deborah Albert

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I am mostly having trouble with Develop module and LR not responding, making any work almost impossible
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Boaz Yoffe

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Please review the display card driver and turn off graphics card acceleration, it never seems to work anyway, Sorry JT
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Deborah Albert

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Did that already
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Petter Bäcklund

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Still no solution for this? 

Classic CC is the worst piece of software I've ever used - why was it even released when everything is so slow compared to previous versions. I need an upgrade urgently. 
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Sumeet Choudhury, Employee

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Kindly install the latest update to Lightroom i.e Lightroom Classic CC 7.2. 
This should resolve your problem of Import. Kindly let us know your feedback on it.
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Gary Eason

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Richard is right. The latest version is a basket case. Workflow crippled here too, like so many others. The only thing it has speeded up is nervous breakdowns.
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PAUL U

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7.2 is as horrible as the last version. I'd like a refund from Adobe until the product they charge us for actually works.
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Gary Eason

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Update on my comment. I fixed all the issues by resetting the LR Preferences. It now flies along faster than ever. Worth a try. Astonishing that this isn't built in to the update process, given all the problems.
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PAUL U

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I'll try that too. I'll let you know if it works.
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Peter Filias

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Mine was a fresh install, but it did find my old LR 3 catalog. Does that mean it had old LR settings?
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JeffB

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Speed of import both from memory cards and during folder sync is markedly improved using last update 7.2.  Thank you for correcting this issue.
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Sumeet Choudhury, Employee

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Happy to know that Jeff. Thanks for the appreciation !
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Mike Vraneza

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version 7.2 complete broke Lightroom on my computer.  Not only is importing exponentially slower, it freezes the program and trying to quit it to restart took 3 minutes.  Specs attached, not shown is the 3 SSDs and 1 HHD all connected via thunderbolt 2 connections.  I'm going back the last version.  SOOOOO tired of being an unpaid beta tester for Adobe....
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Richard Stead

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I have exactly the same issue. Uploading from memory card used to be quick now it takes hours!!!
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scottevest

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same here!
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Hannes Svardal

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Same here. Extremely slow after upgrade. I am on Verions 7.2.
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PAUL U

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Adobe is obviously not interested in the pro market. I've waited for them to fix this mess they created. Its time to shop for something professional that can be relied upon.
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Hannes Svardal

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In my case they actually contacted me per email to look into the issue. We found out that it is related to reading from the memory card. When first copying the photos to the hard disk and importing from there, the problem does not occur for me. Not ideal, but a viable workaround.
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scottevest

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I too am having this problem. VERY slow importing, like 6 images a minute or so.  
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Deborah Albert

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Mine is very slow and keeps crashing. have sent 10 reports to Adobe. No reply!
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PAUL U

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Okay Todd, Here you go: 
 
Importing 347 images:  RAW & JPEG (D800 @ 36.3mp each)

- Embedded & Sidecar  4min 30 sec
- Standard  4 min 43 sec
- 1:1  4 min. 49 sec.

Lightroom 7.2
Mac OS High Sierra 10.13.4 
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Todd Shaner, Champion

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Previously you said, "It took 20 minutes to download 100 photos (12 sec/file)." Now you can import 346 images in 4 min 30 sec (<1 sec/file)? From these results you must be a happy camper yes, no, confused? There should also be differences between the three types of previews selected in the Import module.

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PAUL U

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Todd - Believe me I am confused! The differences between Embedded..., Standard, and 1:1 didn't seem like much. Each time I imported it was into a new catalog. Normally I do a lot on concert photography. I shoot thousands of photos per event. The time it was takoing made life impossible. What I need to do next is import into my regular Lightroom catalog. Does the size of the existing catalog matter? I have 350,000 photos in it currently.
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PAUL U

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One other thing...thank you! I am hesitant to get too excited just yet. I need to see this work with my full catalog.
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Todd Shaner, Champion

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Paul, 350,000 photos in the LR catalog should not be an issue. Since you are getting good import times with a new catalog here's what I suggest you try next. Backup the current catalog if you haven't done so already. Create another new empty catalog in a separate new folder. Give it a unique name. Next go to menu File> select 'Import from Another Catalog,' select your current LR.lrcat catalog file, and check the option 'Add New Photos To CatalogWithout Moving.' It will take some time to import the catalog with 350,000 images so you may want to let it run over night. Once completed try importing files into the new merged catalog and see if this fixes the long import time.
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Reetesh Mukul, Employee

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@Deborah Albert, @scottvest -- Please provide more details. Like what is your card spec (its speed). What is the size of image you are trying to import. Also can you provide crash report. When you are importing, what preview option you have tried. 
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JeffB

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The slow import problem has returned to my Windows 10 system.  Since the issue went away after the 7.2 update and no further changes have been made to Lightroom (as far as I know) I must assume the issue is related to some property or setting locally.  I just changed my import presets to incorporate the camera serial number into the file renaming.  My theory is that reading this metadata is taking a very long time.  I can see the new photo files being copied to my destination folders and being renamed.  The copy and renaming has been running for over an hour yet the Lightroom application still shows zero on its progress bar and displays "importing files...".

Is there any way to enable more verbose logging for Lightroom?  That would help to isolate the step that is taking the most time to complete.
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Todd Shaner, Champion

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It's possible the LR Preferences file has become corrupted, which can cause many "unexplained" issues. Try resetting as outlined at the below link. I would also suggest restarting your system if you haven't  already done so.

https://www.lightroomqueen.com/how-do-i-reset-lightrooms-preferences/
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Gary Eason

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Thank you, thank you, thank you. My life is redeemed. LR had become so sluggish after the latest 'update' that it had destroyed my workflow and reduced me almost to tears. Everything was painfully slow, if it worked at all. Resetting the Preferences using the simple startup method has transformed it. Faster than ever. So fast I'm feeling giddy, clicking on folders and watching the thumbnails fill the screen in an instant - instead of (say) two minutes. Hurray! Why the heck don't Adobe just incorporate this non-destructively into their Updater? 
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Todd Shaner, Champion

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Good to hear it fixed your performance issues! Every LR update that adds or changes a specific feature needs to be added or changed in your current LR Preferences file during the update process. It appears in some cases this can corrupt the file causing many different unexplained issues. The Preferences file can be corrupted in other ways such as a LR crash, memory issues, or system drive issues. It's a "dynamic" file that is constantly changing and being rewritten. That's why it's always a good idea to try resetting it as one of the first LR troubleshooting steps. It's a bit of a PITA because you'll need to manually enter custom Preference settings and reload any plugins you're using. I keep a Word doc with screenshots of the Preferences settings panels and Plugin Manager to make it easier to restore.
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JeffB

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After the last Lightroom 7.3 update the slow performance has returned and is now worse than with 7.1.  As no one from Adobe has responded to my request to provide access to logging details on the import process, I have done it myself.  One major problem I have found is that Lightroom is writing temp files to the network storage location where my images are ultimately stored.  THIS MUST STOP!  This is the worst possible performance hit.  Temp files can and should be written to fast local storage.  You need to provide a way to configure this so I can choose a local temp work path rather than forcing Lightroom to do unnecessary read / write ops across the network.

It took Lightroom 7.3 exactly 60 minutes to import 72 images into my catalog.  Total size of import was 4.2GB.  72 raf and 72 jpg sidecars.  This is absurd and no longer tenable.  I am now testing other image management systems to replace Lightroom.
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dmeephd

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I am using Lghtroom CC 2015.14 as I refused to upgrade to Lightroom Classic CC given all of its bugs and performance issues.  I run LR on a Mac Pro 6.1 with a 3.5GHz 6-core Intel processor with 128GB of RAM—that's right...128GB!

An import of one photo shoot with raw files and jpgs, some 1400 files, takes 4 to 5 hours, not counting the preview build times.  That's obscene.  LR is no longer a useable nor viable program for professionals.
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Peter Filias

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For my amateur photo hobby, I had NO issues with Picasa for bulk photo importing. I wonder why I ever abandoned that. :(
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Victoria Bampton - Lightroom Queen, Champion

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dmeephd, I agreed, that's crazy. So is refusing to upgrade to the latest versions, when the engineers have been working hard to solve such problems. They're not going to listen when you're using a version released months ago. Update A COPY of your catalog (actually, the upgrade would do a copy anyway!) and see if you still have the same issues. If you do, supply further information. They can't fix it if they don't know what problems you're seeing. That's not normal.
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dmeephd

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Sorry, Victoria, but with so many reported bugs in LR Classic, including continued poor performance, one would have to either be crazy, an unecessary risk-taker, or an Adobe shill to take the plunge, change their database, and find the same old problems plus a plethoria of new ones—as have been reported in this forum and many others since the releas of LR Classic CC and LR CC.

The updating of the catalog is especially problematic.  We have read far too many reports of hours running into days to perform the update of the catalog, with the result of broken presets, hashed keywords, and missing images.  My catalog is over 30GB with just shy of 3M images, going back to film images electronically scanned from my Formula 1 days as a working pro.

I have working assignments, sometimes up to 17 days in duration, where I could shoot 1,200 images per day.   I simply cannot afford to be sidelined whilst LR makes a hash of everything I worked for for years.  Especially when Adobe NEVER responds to bug reports and their telephone customer support is anything but supportive.  It's a joke, but no one except Adobe and their bankers are laughing.
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Mike Vraneza

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I'm so tired of being abandoned by Adobe. We working professionals made them what they are, now they are clearly chasing ametuers in hopes of even higher record profits. Someone needs to come along and eat their lunch. What a joke indeed
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Peter Filias

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I am using Lightroom CC Classic 7.3 on a PC with an i7-6700K @4.5GHZ and16GB RAM. I am importing from a Hard Drive > Lightroom LIbrary and it is SUPER DUPER SLOW, eventually stalling, causing me to kill the process.
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PAUL U

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I spoke with an Adobe Reprenentative yesterday who naturally knew nothing about any of these issues. I've written this before & will do so once more. Adobe has become very similar to Apple. They screw things up and rarely if ever even acknowledge their failures. Eventually - maybe months later, they find a fix and then quietly announce their update. Its a shame we've all invested so much time & money in companies like these.
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Peter Filias

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I just picked my next folder, 2015, which has about 5500 photos, and it hasn't even moved past the empty-looking "Importing files..." window. 

It currently has only 701 photos imported from a previous attempt that I had to cancel because I couldn't wait all day.
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dmeephd

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Exactly.  This behavior is not new to LR CLassic CC; it has been going on for several iterations now, and all Adobe has been doing is adding useless features and ignoring performance issues.
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Peter Filias

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So what's the alternative, on a PC (my main rig) or a Mac? I don't want to pay $300 for Capture One. Heck, there are probably others out there... I just haven't looked in a few years since just the other day when I purchased Adobe CC. Now I wonder...
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dmeephd

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Many are looking at ON1 products.  Capture Pro is a bit pricey, but if it works, then it changes the equation?  My biggest hurdle is moving the database from LR to something else and not losing the keywords, the edits, and last but not least, the Smart Collections.

It's a real problem, and caused by Adobe and their inability (or refusal) to cater to the needs of the working professional and upgrade the foundation of their database from SQL Lite to a full relational database like MS SQL or Oracle.  This simple design change alone would solve most, if not all of the performance issues, but it would raise the cost—or lower the profits—of each copy sold because of increased licensing costs from the DB supplier.

Unfortunately, it appears that Adobe doesn't even bother to ask working pros if they would pay more for higher performance.  Adobe seems to be focused on the cellphone picture crowd who do not want to pay much if anything for a DAM application, and are using LR primarily on their phones of notepads.

I spent over $7k on my hardware, not including over 80TB in external drives for redundant backup.  My Mac Pro 6.1 (the trash can) has a 3.5GHz 6-core processor, a 4TB SSD drive, and 128GB of RAM (along with two video processors, each with 6GB of RAM).  It's about as high powered a Mac as one can buy, thanks to third-party vendors.  And granted, it improved LR's performance over my Macbook Pro with 16GB, but heck—it still takes 15 - 30 minutes to optimize the catalog (down from hours on the laptop).  And that is all because of the underlying database.

So saveth experts in Adobe who used to work on LR but have now moved to other products.
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Peter Filias

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I still cannot import my 2015 folder of 5494 pictures. No matter how many times I try, it never imports. It's still at only 701 photos.

Update: After closing Lightroom and relaunching it, it looks like it's able to start importing from that folder. My question: Why, and why is this acceptable for Adobe?
(Edited)
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JeffB

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I am migrating my studio to Capture One.  Adobe is no longer a viable option for me.  After 20 years   Adobe has abandoned me.
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PAUL U

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I am resisting but it does appear the writing is on the wall for many of us. It appears Adobe has gotten too big to care about their customers.
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Reetesh Mukul, Employee

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We will replicate this issue locally and find a solution for it.