Lightroom: Support Common Image Formats (EPS, GIF, PDF, BMP etc.)

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Feature request: Please add Lightroom support for common Adobe publishing and Web image formats, such as EPS, AI, PDF, GIF, and PNG.

Many of us use Lightroom to manage client images in NEF, JPG, PSD and other formats. But the clients' associated images, which are used on their Websites and in their logos and publications, are invisible to Lightroom. If Adobe Bridge can display these other image formats, why can't Lightroom?

Even if Lightroom did not provide direct editing support for these other image formats, it would still be extremely useful if Lightroom could catalog and display them.

It would also elevate Lightroom from being "just" a photo editor into the realm of being a true Digital Asset Manager (DAM). Now that Lightroom includes basic video support - isn't it time to support all the common image formats that our other CS applications use?

Please vote for, as well as reply to, this request if you would also like to see Lightroom support these additional common image formats...
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Phil Tobias

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Posted 7 years ago

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Rory Hill

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If LR had a comprehensive SDK then a third party could / would deal with this and many other issues. Since LR has limited development resources and modest capabilities outside the develop module this is where I would like to see the Adobe resources expended.
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Phil Tobias

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Hi, Rory. So you are suggesting that Adobe furnish a robust Software Development Kit (SDK), which would allow third parties to provide additional capabilities, such as improved image format support?
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Rory Hill

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Yes.
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Phil Tobias

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That's a fine idea, and one that could lead to many new capabilities, including better image format support. However, as someone who is involved with an SDK development team (I write the documentation), it is not a trivial undertaking. But I'd love to see Adobe pursue this. Though it is related to this topic, perhaps you should start a new feature request for a robust Lightroom SDK?
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Rory Hill

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I agree it is a non-trivial undertaking. In fact, I suspect it would be more difficult than anything else in LR development. My experience using javascipt with photoshop and bridge shows Adobe is not that good at engineering and supporting the SDK. A good example of this is the bridge SDK, where the ScriptUI is riddled with bugs since CS6 and has not been fixed even though it works in photoshop and the ESTK.

The LR SDK has been asked for before (several times)... and sort of promised at the beginning of LR. Personally I think Adobe should concentrate on the develop module, core library capabilities and a robust SDK, instead of creating almost good enough modules like mapping and books.
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thany81

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At least it would mean that we don't have to surrender to *only* Adobe's mercy when asking for new features. This is very important with such a complex product.
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thany81

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Lightroom: Catalog GIF files.


Allow cataloging GIF files in the next Lightroom, please. GIFs are used for animation, and folks who want to create those neat anigifs from pieces of video, can keep those GIFs in the catalog using this feature.

Lightroom would have to support *animated* GIF as well as non-animated. Animation is technically already supported in the form of video support.
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thany81

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Related to this: I also find it rather weird that in order to catalog PSD files, they need to be stored with "maximum compatibility" switched on. That feels like one Adobe product has trouble reading another Adobe product's file formats. This needs fixing too.
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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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PhotogRaffi

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I wish the Library section worked like a regular browser, and users can manually add content they want in the catalog. This would help me see files that are new from other apps. Sync Folders is when you know there is something in it. This of course would be most useful when other image formats are visible.
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Kim Letkeman

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The need to at least acknowledge most common formats in the catalog is blindingly obvious. LR's catalog is used by many as the sole source of information about our images, and that includes EXIF, tags, location and so on. Only supporting the easy formats makes sense only to those who might not want to poison the "purity" of their product philosophy. But the real world demands solutions that work, and don't hide data.
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Phil Tobias

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Thank you, Kim, for agreeing that Lightroom needs expanded image format support.

...pt
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martijn Saly

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Precisely. If Photoshop can do it, so can Lightroom. Adobe already has all the code they need to implement extra file formats, which includes non-maximized PSD, as well as several oddballs.

The only challenge would be animated GIF and APNG, since those files are "video" and picture at the same time.

I'm not so sure about vector format, though. Lightroom works on pixels, not vectors.
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Kim Letkeman

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Lightroom can handle video formats already and should have no problem with animated formats. Heck, every browser can do it already, so the code is nothing short of trivial.

I had a long and involved debate with Andrew over at Pixel Genius on the forums regarding ACR support at more than n-1 photoshop versions and he swore up and down that it was impossible because of the complexity. I asserted that in fact it was not impossible at all and was probably in fact trivial. But is was a marketing decision to force upgrades.

And then Adobe went to the subscription model and could not force upgrades any more, so CS6 magically works with the next version of ACR for the very first time.

This is all just a matter of Adobe getting off the high horse and supporting people in the real world. Simple to code, difficult to convince.
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martijn Saly

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The non-trivial part is APNG (supported in Firefox an all other Gecko-based browsers, possibly more), which are just everyday run-of-the-mill png files, but with extra metadata for frame 2 and beyond. The tricky bit is that these files are both animated and static.

Same for GIF files: they shouldn't always be treated as video, altough these days it's relatively likely that they are animated.
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john beardsworth

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You deliberately chose to save files in an incompatible format, clicking through warning messages. An action could fix them.
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john beardsworth

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Oh, all assumptions, yeah right. And let's upload PSDs to the cloud....

All because we're too lazy to fix the problem we caused ourselves, and which we can easily fix for ourselves, today?
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Phil Tobias

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Hi, folks. Before we get unduly concerned about the nuances of supporting some particular image format, we need to convince Adobe that expanded file format support is needed by many of us.

To do that, a united front would seem to be helpful. So please encourage more people to vote for this general idea.
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Kim Letkeman

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Arguments claiming "bloat" or "difficulty" have come up in the past, when in reality Adobe has all the skills and existing technology to accomplish the cataloging support we need, and even editing support if they chose to. Adobe could support basic import and cataloging operations with trivial amounts of code, but the lack of same is purely a marketing choice.

Fatuous apologist arguments appear to be coming from a position of ignorance of software architecture issues as did past arguments against Adobe supporting newer versions of ACR in existing Photoshop versions, a position that Adobe reversed as soon as it suited them.
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Kim Letkeman

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@John -- you are focusing on one narrow issue and totally missing the point here. We want support for cataloging of all known image and video formats, not just the ones that LR can parse. This makes the cataloging section of LR much more useful to those of us who want to to rely on more than the LR catalog for a sense of organization of related files. Visualizing and editing of those formats is secondary and could be added after the fact for the most important formats. Offline tools could be created to provide the re-rendering and / or conversion. But this would all work much better *once the files are cataloged!* Seriously, try to see the big picture.
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john beardsworth

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Thanks, but I don't need you asking me to see the big picture. As I said before, I've long been in favour of LR letting the photographer choose what types of files to manage in the catalogue. No argument there. Non-maximized PSDs are the issue Martijn raised, and to which I responded.
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Phil Tobias

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John, Many people NEED to save related files together. We don't want to change their formats. We want Lightroom to support these formats. ...pt
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john beardsworth

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I am totally in favour of your request, Phil, and have often expressed similar views. But that doesn't mean I think it's a great idea to bloat LR with the code (which isn't trivial) to decipher a proprietary file format where the user has explicitly chosen to make files incompatible.
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Kim Letkeman

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You are presuming that the user knows that it is Adobe's own products that will become incompatible. You are further assuming that the code is not already in there but disabled (Adobe makes decisions like that all the time.) Too many presumptions invalidates the argument.
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reinecke

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Lightroom needs to catalog AI files..


Even photographers have logos and artwork to go with their photos.
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Phil Tobias

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Indeed, reinecke. That is why it would be extremely useful for Lightroom to provide support for more of the common image formats.

Thanks for supporting this feature request. ...pt
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reinecke

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I found a work-around with "AnyFile" Lightroom plugin. It has limitations but with the 30 day free trial and a cost of "a donation" it is worth examining. I found it at
http://www.johnrellis.com/lightroom/a....
I installed it and have had no problems.
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martijn Saly

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AnyFile is way too fiddly for me. It's very badly integrated into Lightroom's regular functions. And it creates extraneous "placeholder" files that just goes against my principles.

One might as well use a second program to catalog unsupported files, which why this needs to be either natively in Lightroom, or waaaaay better integrated with a plugin.
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Phil Tobias

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I'm glad, reinecke, that the AnyFile plugin workaround meets your needs.

I tried Anyfile a couple of years ago and found it annoying in my own situation. Although I have since forgotten the details, I seem to recall a clutter of placeholder files. And due to the way my network attached storage device allocates space, I think each placeholder was taking up much more space than one would expect.

In any event, I quickly gave up on AnyFile. For me it was not a satisfactory replacement for Lightroom providing adequate file support in the first place.

But I'm glad you like it. Others might want to check it out, too. ...pt
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PhotogRaffi

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yup, I too tried it, and I wish I could use it. Its been a while maybe it is rewritten, but I had to stop using it also.
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reinecke

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Hey Adobe. Why is not possible, practical or worth the effort to support .ai and other formats?
Yes, this is my second post.
It is annoying to have to open Bridge to see my .ai files.
I am not a programmer, but untutored logic suggests that if Bridge can see the .ai files, then Lightroom should be able to.
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Phil Tobias

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Yes, reinecke.

You are right - "It is annoying to have to open Bridge to see" our other graphics files.

Lightroom should support more common image formats.

Best regards. ...pt
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Tanja Schulte

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and bridge get ́s no love either as you may noticed......
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Barry Jefferson

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I couldn't agree more. I'm doing all kinds of photography tasks for my client including post processing images they give me. I need Lightroom to help me catalog all the files I work with.
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Phil Tobias

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Yes, Barry, Lightroom would be more useful if it supported more common image file formats.
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Tanja Schulte

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well the request is over 4 years old.

adobe cares a sh*t.... obviously.
every shareware coder could do it in less time.

i mean most lightroom user are on subscription anyway.. so why do something?

a few crappy beta features every 6 month keeps most of the lemmings hooked.
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Phil Tobias

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Indeed, Tanja, it would be nice if Adobe actually listened to its customers. This feature request is one that quite a few Adobe customers would appreciate.
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Kim Letkeman

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A pretty typical pattern methinks ... to boost profits in the new "shareholders matter more than anyone or anything else" economy, you cut the team to the bone and work on one or two whiz bang features per release, leaving glaring deficiencies and gaping holes to fester for year after year.

However, there is a way to make improvements and that is to strike a 50/50 balance between new features and GUI / usability improvements. This is where Adobe seem to fall short.

More supported formats, much better responsiveness with face detection running in the background, discarding clicks while the GUI is frozen to prevent random actions, and so on ... lots and lots of features that could really improve the experience.
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Michael Naylor

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I've only recently become aware of another need for GIF file support - in particular: for Animated GIFs or Cinemagraphs produced by Photoshop CC 2015. So, I'm really surprised to discover my LR CC 2015 is unable to add them to the catalogue.

I also notice that Bridge is listed under "Previous Versions" in that ridiculous Creative Cloud App that take so long to verify my account - a possible indicator that Adobe is allowing Bridge to vanish altogether.

And another thing: they are unable to change my Adobe ID (i.e. my email) and say I must delete my current subscription and create a new one to do this. I find that to be pathetic.

All this is causing me to become p***ed off and look elsewhere, but there just isn't a viable Photoshop alternative for the type of work I do. They have me by the short and curlys.
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martijn Saly

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About your first paragraph: precisely. Adobe knows damn well how to read animated GIFs, and Lightroom is already capable of handling video - Animated GIF is nothing but mute video in essence.

About your other statements: a bit offtopic, is it not? I suggest you create a different topic for those, although I do agree.
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Michael Naylor

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I've posted a similar post on the Adobe forum and got a near instant response from support. He says Adobe are working on an updated Bridge. Most of my work ends up in Photoshop, so I mainly use LR only for RAW conversion, exporting, and its catalogue. Maybe an updated Bridge will suite me better.
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Kim Letkeman

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Sigh ... Adobe continue to run like two separate teams that only loosely collaborate, and that really hurts the suite. Heck, I pay 10 bucks a month in perpetuity so that I can use both seamlessly ... and that vision has certainly not quite arrived ...
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Michael Naylor

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Without any kind of announcement to my knowledge, it is now possible to change your Adobe ID. Something that may be necessary if you change your email supplier as I have done. Well done Adobe, you've done something that Apple is incapable of, but zero marks for not informing me that this is now possible.
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Tom Williamson

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I would love to be able to import non-image files into Lightroom's database. It would be a very useful feature.

An example of where this would be useful: I occasionally have additional files which are associated with a set of photos. Notes in text files, information in PDFs, audio files, and so on. I can copy these files to the same folder as the photos in the library. But without the ability to see these files in Lightroom, to add keywords and make them searchable, they are effectively lost forever among the thousands of other files and directories.

The ability to manage these files in Lightroom would be extremely valuable. I would not expect Lightroom to support editing or even preview of non-image files. Just the ability to keep track of them.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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Check out my Any File plugin -- it's intended for exactly this purpose. Not as convenient as having it builtin to LR, but it gets the job done.
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Jim Barton

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hi John Please could you explain how to get it? I have gone to the Adobe Add-ons page and searched for Any File, anyfile, any - but not got a result at all. Searching for file finds something totally unrelated. OK I did a google search and found it on your home page, rather than on adobe. It is a free trial then paid for (albeit with a very friendly option) plug-in. Not sure its worthwhile for so far one GIF, but I will have to see what other files I'm missing compared to my previous DAM program.
(Edited)
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Jim Barton

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I've just found this out and am gobsmacked. I created the GIF in Photoshop from a series of photos, exported it, and now can't use it in Lightroom. Yet Lightroom reads videos. Astounding. I came to Adobe Creative CLoud because it was supposed to be more of a standard than the DAM that I had been using. Now I find it does less. My vote has been cast for Adobe to include them, even if only to enable Lightroom to be more of a PROPER cataloguing program. I thought so! I previously had Photoshop Elements 12, and that can handle GIFs and also PDF files. Now I am even more amazed that the supposedly professional better option cannot.
(Edited)
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Phil Tobias

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Yes, Jim, Lightroom still needs to support more file formats - natively, without third-party plugins.

Thank you for your support and comments. Maybe one day Adobe will listen to its users and add this needed functionality.

...pt
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Werner

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Massive failing, all DAM software see bmp except Adobe.

For what would be some simple coding to view bmp files by Adobe..., Lightroom would have been the new replacement to what was an excellent DAM software, Extensis Portfolio, (discontinued and Portfolio users not happy !!!!)  but Lr doesnt support a native raster file type hat has existed since the inception of windows, that of bmp. All others do. I am gutted. Thats Lightroom of no use, I have thousands of bmp files, and no  I am not converting them, as I am making them daily with the progs that by default make them, simulators, and also I have to make them for Msoft Access database displays as it only works on bmp.

As such Lightroom falls at first hurdle.

Merlin
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Phil Tobias

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Yes, Merlin.

Lightroom still needs support for additional common image formats. The lack of same is indeed a "massive failing."

Thanks for your comment.   ...pt
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Barry Jefferson

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I don't get why this discussion is 6 years old!! This is not a hard concept, either conceptually or technically. Lightroom needs to support a full spectrum of image file formats including those formats produced by other Adobe products - period! Phil, has anyone told you why this has dragged on for so long?
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Alan Harper

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Mother: I told you six years ago why you should get married!
Son: Mom!
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Phil Tobias

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>>Phil, has anyone told you why this has dragged on for so long?

No, no official Adobe representative has ever explained why Adobe has dragged their feet so long on providing support for additional necessary image formats.

...pt

PS: Since my original feature request covered multiple common image formats, I hope that combining that with specific JPEG2000 support does not further bury the real need for more image format support overall.
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martijn Saly

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Question: what is so special about GIF that Lightroom cannot support it?

How can we make Adobe see how common GIF is, and how Lightroom already supports a (albeit extremely limited) set of video formats?

GIF engines are *plentyful* and should be dead-easy to implement. Heck, even Photoshop can read and write GIF (among very many others!), so why are the Lightroom devs so stubborn in comparison?
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Marcus Kaufhold

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Oh? Lightroom didn't support .bmp ? 
Now I have to go for ACDsee? Wow. 
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Gordon Holmes

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I've been asking Adobe to let us see pdfs for... how many years now?... in their "surveys". 
Obviously no one is listening! 
Surely this can't be that difficult a request, especially when so many users are in favor. 
But I guess users don't count.
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Phil Tobias

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Thank you - Keep pressuring Adobe to support additional image formats in Lightroom.
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Doug Willis

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Feature Request - Ability to Import PDF files into LR Classic CC.

Please Adobe, make your Creative Suite truly integrated with at least our own products. I want to be able to use LR to import,view and manage PDF files (an Adobe standard). I can do it in Bridge without any fuss, why can't I do it in LR. I understand this feature request goes back at least 8 years and still nothing has been done about it. If you negelect the very core premise of your CC products, i.e. seamless workflow integration, then Adobe and the CC suite will soon lose relevance and value, a competitor will come along that listens to its user needs and they will attract your customers. Once you lose your customers trust and confidence, it is very hard (and expensive) to win them back. I have been an Adobe LR user since the beta days, it is generally a good product, but it is losing its shine. In the past, third party LR plugins like import anyfile would get around this issue but that no longer works with latest versions of LR.

Another example of lacking true integration that I have raised before is not having the ability to drag and drop edited images in LR into Indesign and keep the non destructive edits. There is Live captioning between programs, but not Live edits. A significant oversight resulting in a time consuming workflow of having to edit in Photoshop, then re-save the image so the image can be placed into indesign.

Please  stop procrastinating on this matter, you have the expertise and the ability to solve these issues quickly and efficiently, just do it.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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I use Any File for my own catalogs. Please get in touch with me at the support email address: 
http://www.johnrellis.com/lightroom/anyfile.htm#support
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Doug Willis

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John,

I emailed you a few days ago and this was your response;


"LR CC (the new cloud-focused version) doesn't support plugins of any kind, unfortunately, so you can't use Any File with it.  Any File only works with the traditional, desktop-focused version of Lightroom – LR Classic, LR 6, or LR CC 2015 – on either Mac or Windows.

 

Thanks much for your interest,

 

   John"



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John R. Ellis, Champion

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Ah, more branding confusion from Adobe's perspicuous product naming.

Lightroom CC (the cloud-focused version of LR) doesn't support plugins of any kind. But Lightroom Classic CC (the desktop-focused version), including the newest version 8.2 released in February, continues to support plugins, and Any File runs well in 8.2.  Adobe continues to develop both Lightroom CC and Lightroom Classic.

The title of your post here said "Lightroom Classic CC".  But if you're not sure which version you're running, do Help > System Info.  Victoria's article explains the differences: 
https://www.lightroomqueen.com/the-future-of-lightroom/
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Doug Willis

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My apologies John,
Yes the naming is easy to mix up an that is what I have done.

I do have both Lightroom CC and Lightroom Classic CC and it is Lightroom Classic that I mostly use. I will tri out your PlugIn 
Although I do suggest  that you update your webpage to avoid others that may also be wondering.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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The Web page currently says, "Any File requires Lightroom 6 / CC 2015 or Lightroom Classic".
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Phil Tobias

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Thank you, Doug Willis.