Lightroom Classic and CC: Allow Catalog to be stored on a networked drive.

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I'd love to make LR more multi-computer friendly. I have no doubt that there's probably database architecture issues and a host of other barriers... But I have to believe that the need for either multi-user or at at lease multi-computer use is widely desired. And yes, I know you can do the catalog import export thing but I find this less than ideal.
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BenD

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Posted 8 years ago

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Conrad Fisher

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Nothing fancy...but I want to lend my voice to this. I'm merely a "home" user. I have a wife...and kids...and tons of photos. And video. Did I mention we have kids? Our library is upwards of 30,000 photos and just gigs of video. And as we've all said...it's not getting smaller. I'm responsible for the technicalities of getting the images from the various devices onto our NAS (Windows Server) while my wife is in charge of finding photos for whatever. We both tag, edit etc - multi-user would be a God-send. So far, we've been using the multi-colored-logo, free, photo-editor with face-recognition...and just are reaching it's limitations...thus the search to see if LR4 would be a better fit...multi-user would be a killer-app scenario.
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abo newsletter

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Hi all.

I also want to say, that a multi-user feature would be really really great feature, so that in our small company we could work simultanously on the same catalog at a time - not on the same file.
Now it is a real pain for us to work with lightroom with more than 1 person and sharing the files. Because if we want to work on fotos at the same time, we just can use the xmp container and sync these file but cannot use the possibilities that lightroom has.

It would be really great to see this in the near future.

greetings and merry christmas
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Christopher Loffredo

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My Lightroom 4 is collecting dust. I've gone back to just using Bridge and Photoshop CS6 as I found LR4 way to difficult in my simple home network.
I am no tech. Just a photographer wanting easy access and security for my photo collection. I seen some folks with creative work arounds but that just too complicated for me.
My 50,000+ and growing photos and videos are stored on my home NAS (Raid 1) that I access from my both my laptop and desktop and backup to additional devices.

There are two types of drives. One's that have failed and one's that has yet to fail.
So I keep backups on two devices at home and a thrid offsite.

Makes no sense to me that its almost 2013 and 4 generations in, and Adobe makes a data management product like this that only works on a local drive.
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Christian Van Hanja

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Ok! as i do a lot of video work lately and specially time-lapse,
(this one is one of them : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WhieIn...),

I end up with having to crunch 170 000 5DMKIII 21 Mpixel raw file because I want to be able to make the color correction and adjustment I want, and keep the High Iso, and exposure latitude ability of the camera, so my customers have issue to understand why I need 15 day to get a preview......

( by the way - totally out of topic-) if you could do a "part of a time-lapse" check box in develop mode were we tell the software to see the "X" image we have set up as a reference point to do a smooth setting transition between different settings in the " sync parameter " button...)

ok back to the topic !

In one of the other great product of Adobe called After Effect, there is a way to export the images sequences on multiple machine : you have a destination folder that is common to all the machines you want to work with, and you set up the export setting in your main project ( call this catalogue if you want ;-), save it and duplicate it on every machine (with the media if your network is slow) and just tell him to not overwrite existing image.... brilliant ! then you open After effect and the project on each client machine and hit "render" : Voila !!!!! even if you have 5 cheap machine it goes a lot faster than only with one high-end machine.

so one feature that would again push In favor of multi-user would be to be able to set up a "collaborative folder" witch would actually be a folder with :
- one alias of your own original catalogue+ XML side cart file with your setting for each image....
- one temp file with files being selected/worked on
- one "export watch folder" with ability for the software to create a "virtual file" of what he is exporting like in After Effect and that allows other user to be aware of image that being worked on and exported. like this there could be a export mode where file already exported wont have to be exported again if they have the same settings.
- a "master mode" that would allow to view if there is several version of the same image with different setting across each user of the collaborative folder and show them as a "stack" with the opportunity to select/merge/flatten/delete one or several version of setting to those image.... and make a watch folder for the other with file to process....

like this we could do 2 main things :

Allow several person to work on a same image folder across the network, and be aware of what the others are doing.

People who, like me, need several times a week to do an export of very large amount of file ( 30 000 x 21 megapixel raw file is a lot of data) , could do it with several machine with a "share the export load over the network" button... why?

because I happened to notice splitting my images folder over :

my Macbook pro I7 quad 2,3
+ my old G4
+ my mac mini server I7 quad 2,0
+ my girlfriend Macbook pro Core2duo 2,7

to have them export smaller batch of 1000 file actually go faster than my 12 core beast with 64 gigs of ram and Twin SSD + 8 bay sonnet SAS RAid 6 drive.....

i cant afford to buy a second MacPro 12 core like this, but i can totally buy 5 mac mini server and stack them together in a closet to have them render the files in a shared effort...

because 1 Mac Pro like mine is 7K and for that price i can have 5 mac mini server with twin hhd in raid 0 and 16 gb of ram + 5 Lightroom license.
with the one I already have that would be a 24 core I7.

being even more silly (and illega)l if Adobe decide to port GPU acceleration to Lightroom, for 7K i could totally picture myself building 6 Hackintosh with a I7 3770K , 32 gb of ram, a 120 gb SSD and a GTX680..... in elcheapo enclosure..

and i can promise that with 24 I7 core at 4,5 ghz (48 tread!!!!) over 9000 cuda cores GPU acceleration + 6 SSD , this setup will be way more powerful than any "XEON super mac pro" money could buy....

So Mr ADOBE if you want to sell me 5 more licenses of Lightroom, and sell a lot of license to other people, come on give us the "collaborative folder " option !!!!!

and NO NO NO i don't want to do this "in the cloud" as i have invested so much money in fast storage solution and Fiber channel.....
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Axiom

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For Dan and the other "employees" logging in here:
I also don't get then how this hasn't been implemented - if you yourselves find it annoying.
You waste all these coding resources on absolute duplicate crap it's astounding - Revel... seriously?
We HAVE lightroom, it catalogs and "bare bones" edits pics.
We HAVE publish services already.
We HAVE Bridge to link our files (and barely have a useful workflow)
We HAVE photoshop to powerhouse through image modifications and creation.
We HAVE creative cloud already - so stuff whatever editing features you like into - oh i don't know - PS Express the iOS app you ALREADY have and be done with it.

Just because Adobe wants to have yet one more incredibly redundant and completely mainstream quadruplicated lack luster and ill coded implementation of yet another subscription to some privacy data mining cloud service just like everyone else, doesn't mean Adobe "and also" has the right to avoid general improvements to the software we're already paying for, have paid for, and are finding less and less reason to continue to pay for.

and it's not just about multi-use or multi-computer access, and you know it.

Stop wasting resources on following the masses and start offering software like you USED to make - that made the MASSES follow YOU.

Stop lowering the bar, because free software has already caught up, and others like me are implementing it more and more.
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Gerald Rowe

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Guys at Adobe, it's comments like 'armchair developers' that really gets my goat up ... believe it or not, there are lots of people outside of Adobe with *many* years of architecture / database experience. (I'm only 33+yrs and counting...)

And, I'd hazard a guess that a large number of us have *never* been involved in a development that has released so many issues to the customers over so many iterations ...

And, Chris, we do want the feature to happen. people did tell you what we wanted. A long time ago. We said why we needed it. A long time ago.

The ball is in YOUR court, guys ...
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Lee Jay

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"So at the very least Adobe could have allowed Lightroom to open an instance of the lcat "locally" and allow THAT to be used as the "live file" with incremental saves to the original upon actual exit/save by the user. "

My .lrcat is 2GB, and my network access is over wireless. I would not be willing to wait the required 7 minutes for LR to launch and then another 7 minutes to exit to implement the above solution.
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Axiom

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true, it can get large... you must have a massive amount of images and metadata :)
However a file that large would still be sluggish over any network connection - even local access would be sluggish... to keep mine smaller, I have multiple catalogs for varied "themes" and or projects... it's the same idea for outlook PST files - as they hit 2gigs it all bogs down. But associating multiple smaller pst files help alleviate the pressure.
Each work flow is different of course.
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Lee Jay

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LR is based around the idea of a single catalog. You can't search across catalogs. You can't open multiple catalogs. Much of the power of the database concept is removed by splitting into multiple small catalogs.

I have two catalogs - one for home, one for work.
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Axiom

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You're absolutely correct, and when they implement an actual database solution that can handle the load of such a massive file - and a rendering solution that doesn't bog down the whole program, then yes, I'll have one database... As it stands - a "scenery" catalog doesn't need to be "normally" searchable when I'm also using a "people" catalog.
But I sure would like the option of the two open at a time lol.

But that type of thing would be a silly request if the underlying core can't even run one "well". So I'm stuck at the basics of wanting a database that "works" with all it's databassy options.

And as a total bonus - with a true database, you can easily link to another database and have them chit chat - again we're left with simply needing a better core solution than SQlite.
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Mark Swink

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Even something as simple as keeping a license activated is becoming more than Adobe can manage. I have already dumped my Adobe XI and went with freeware that gets the job done just as well and doesn't keep losing authentication causing me to have to waste an hour or more on the phone with Adobe support. When it is time to replace Lightroom and my Creative Master Suite, you can bet I will be shopping around. Adobe is getting to the point where they are pi**ing off long standing customers by ignoring our needs and pushing out software that doesn't meet our needs and won't even stay activated. Adobe is on the verge of finding out they are NOT too big to fail.
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Laurel Soper

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Chris, In response to your comment, I want the feature to happen. I want a multi-user, network accessible Lightroom catalog. Why? I work in a community college marketing department. We like Lightroom's library and develop features. We use keywords and metadata to make our collection searchable. We've worked around the shareability shortcomings but it's a major pain.

Our staff, including photo archivists, print and web designers, and writers - need read and write access to our photo collection. If you need details for use cases or feature requirements, I can provide them.
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Richard Wagner

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Laurel's comments are spot-on. I'm on the Board of ASMP Tucson. Without question, the desire/need for a multi-user, network accessible LR catalog has been present for a very long time. So-called workarounds are fraught with the potential for disaster. And yes, this basic need/request has been ignored while resources have been pumped into "features" than many, if not most users could care less about.

Sure, Adobe has the technical expertise to do this, but they have not put the resources into it, in the same way that they have not put the resources into Bridge to fix many long-standing problems/complaints. It's considered "good enough," and top programmers are moved to other projects.

Is this an easy feature to implement? Clearly not. Photo Mechanic is still behind schedule on their multi-user, network capable shared catalog, but they are definitely working on it, and they are minuscule in size compared with Adobe. If iView MediaPro had not gone down the Microsoft buy-and-bury route, the market would likely already have a multi-user, network-capable image catalog, with a slick app, to boot. Portfolio has the client-server model down, but not integration with Adobe products. Adobe Cloud instead? Most photographers I know find that repulsive. Where will this go? Only Adobe knows... but many of us are not optimistic, for good reason.
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Lee Jay

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"And yes, this basic need/request has been ignored while resources have been pumped into "features" than many, if not most users could care less about."

I could care less about network access. There are dozens, if not hundreds of other features I'd rather have the team work on than this one. I'm not belittling your need for this feature, or that of others, I'm only pointing out that users have different needs and that the need for this feature is not as ubiquitous as many of it's supporters imply in their posts.
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Axiom

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... and your needs are just as valid as ours for what improvements people would like to see.

I'm sure if I followed around your postings, I'd find one or two features/improvements that you're on the bandwagon for that I'd like to see as well - but the fact we are here on THIS thread, with THIS request means it is required, wanted, needed by at least 204 people. At a max of $150 a pop - just for this version - that's a $30k revenue of cash for Adobe, and if other offerings arise that offer what we as customers need, we'd switch.

Thing is, it's great that you don't need this feature, I'd like to also be in that position, so it's good that you have chimed in to let Adobe know, but when you do need it, it's not going to be there.

This thread has exposed the minimum effort they have placed into the database core of lightroom - which, btw, is EXACTLY the reason this software was originally made for. You don't build a house on rented land, and that's what they have done - so all the additional features and benefits people "want" are built on a weak and "relatively ignored" foundation.

Ironically, if it was built with a proper DB engine, your lcat file might be more efficient, might be smaller, and networking would exist, and this thread would not be here.
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Richard Wagner

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What I hear over and over is that even at the more elementary "networking" level, even synchronizing a catalog between a laptop and a desktop Lightroom is seriously deficient. Users just can't do it - i.e. not without a lot of workaround. At a minimum (!) what is needed is a two-way file/folder compare feature and synchronize catalog updates. Many photographers using laptops in the field and desktops at home are all bent and twisted over this. It would be perhaps one of the single most popular upgrade features Adobe could implement. The core DB functionality of LR is seriously deficient, unless you're a single user, never use a laptop kind of photographer. I don't know many of those.
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Rob Cole

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|> "even synchronizing a catalog between a laptop and a desktop Lightroom is seriously deficient"

Exporting / importing catalog works pretty good - have you tried it?

Not good for using catalog in different rooms of the house, each of which has a different computer. But for taking catalog on the road in laptop, and synchronizing upon return, it has an appropriate synchronization feature. (won't handle synchronizing changes made in *both* versions, but allows easily updating one with changes made to the other).
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wblackwell

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Complex concurrent editing protocols are many and varied and often open source (Google Wave for example).

yes, the SQL would have to change from Lite to something else. Big deal. I think concurrent editing is more important. While I don't think the recent crabby comments are helping or accurate, I think it's time for A to invest some thought in this for pro users.

-Walker Blackwell
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JACK IVY

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I use a few computers in our studio and would like to Lightroom use a central storage location when it comes to storing images. Maybe like a network version. I've asked others and they say Lightroom does not support network usage. Another thing I'd like to see is a better "presetation module". Something similar to ProSelect. I'd like to trim down my software packages. Thanks.

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
How About Central Storage in Lightroom & a Better Presentation Feature.
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john beardsworth

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Lightroom does support images stored on networks. What it does not currently allow is putting its catalogue on the network.
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Mark Bortz

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Which means it's not networkable. I can't open up my catalog from any workstation. As a great first step you should be able to open up the catalog over the network (not as multi user). That would initially solve a lot of problems. Then solve the multi user issue.
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Laurel Soper

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Your local catalog can reference photos stored on a network drive. It's the catalog (lrcat file) that cannot be on the network.
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john beardsworth

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No, it means one thing you said you want is possible, the other currently isn't .
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Rodney L Wright

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You can see that over a year ago, we engaged in a spirited exchange about adding multi-user access (using record-level locking). Adobe needs to devote serious efforts to make this possible. I understand that this might require a different licencing model to protect Adobe. I would suggest a home model for up to three users on the same net, a small business version, and a professional or Enterprise model that would allow large organizations to work together sharing the same database of photos.

If the will is there, Adobe will make this happen. It would be a shame to have to convert to some competitor's product just to get this capability.
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Christian Van Hanja

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well what should happened have happened, one of my customer have canceled one of the " arty guy who shoot with strobes and in raw" photographer of the pool and have replaced him with News guy who shot in jpeg because : "he gets the photo online straight away and he works with photo mechanics so caption injection is a no brainer " .

so now we still have the Instagram guy from last year+ a news guy ....

and we are two "real photographer" down

the photo desk's head don't want to hear about Lightroom.

If i had a way to have a global home catalog that would host sub catalog and give the ability of just captioning and rating photo of the whole group, we would be using lightroom.... and we would just hand our cards to him.

now we have to import, select, rate, and caption in photo mechanic, then we need to send this selection in lightroom to process the raw file, then we need to export to JPEG on a USB stick and give the usb stick to him.....

while we do that, the "News Guy" is already back on location and shooting....

so first of all do exactly like you want but please ADOBE I suggest that you look at the speed of photo mechanic, and who the h*** care about a slideshow function, GIVE US A PROPER CAPTION TOOL ;-)

professional ALL caption their images, otherwise they can't sale it.....

if i need to do a slide show I will use a slideshow software !

so

1) SPEED IN LIBRARY MODE ( same as photo mechanic)
2) BETTER CAPTION (( same as photo mechanic)
3) even if you dont do multi user, just let the APP open a catalogue thru a network, even if it is just in library mode.... or maybe just do a "Library client" that allow captioning, rating and selection thru a gigabyte network !

if you look on the web you will see a ton of post about people having to use both software to get the job done !
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Martijn Saly

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Any application that stores it's things (like the catalog) in the user profile directory, is intrinsically multi-user, since the user profile directory is separate for each user. That says nothing about networking, but one could imagine mapping that folder to a networked folder.

It will be slow, though.

Even on a gigabit LAN. Even on ten-gigabit LAN. Because latency is thousands of times higher than local disk access.

As for a shared catalog. It is hard to build something like that. VERY HARD. Many have tried and many have failed. Creating some kind of shared database on a network you know nothing about, used by an unknown number of clients you know nothing about is not just asking for trouble... it's falling onto your knees and begging for trouble.

I'm glad Adobe does not dive into this.
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Axiom

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WTF?

Firstly, you can't share a lightroom catalog no matter where it is, which is why we're complaining - they built on SQLite. Nor can you use multi user either.

Secondly, you can most definitely share a mySQL database over any network.
It's the second reason they were built, the first being - to store data. So you are incorrect.

Thirdly, my catalog is no where near my "user" folder, I could care less about how my OS wants me to organize things, it's on a separate drive altogether.

Additionally, your user profile folder is most definitely NOT sharable as "default" in any operating system, it's why there are separate user folders and not "everyone's all in a mess folders". And even the root user folder complains of being shared, so again, you are incorrect.

Fourthly, you can most definitely have a gigabit network transfer data faster than a single IDE or even sata hard drive depending on what the drive is doing simultaneously.

Finally, you most definitely can limit the amount of users that can access the catalog either at the developer or use level depending on the options the developer dictates, and Adobe only supports TWO kind of operating systems - mac and windows, and limits backwards compatibility with it's software so that you have to at least be in a range of acceptable OS versions in order to even use the software...

So yes Adobe knows "to a very well educated degree" as to what type of network their software can be expected to encounter.

The fact that lightroom does not support shared nuthin is because it's poorly coded, on a weak database implementation. Period.
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Sasha K.

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Martijn, ironically we are able to read your comment because for this web site, Adobe DID dive into proper databases and networking. Imagine if you had to visit their data center in person and log in to the physical web server machine to be able to see this page. Ridiculous right? Yet there were times where this was the only way, and people who insisted that that is the only way and introducing network into the solution will make it very slow and will be VERY HARD. In this day and age it is not. It is ridiculous that I can put my 36MP RAW files and HD videos on the network (and have Lightroom deal with that just fine) but not Lightroom catalog data for that image - which is not even a kilobyte.

Adobe could make it accessible across the network drives / shares or across the web / cloud.
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Richard Wagner

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Martijn,

Are you familiar with Extensis Portfolio Server? (http://www.extensis.com/portfolio-ser...)

Canto Cumulus? (http://www.canto.com/en/docs/flash/si..., http://www.canto.com/en/products/web-...)

PhotoMechanic? (http://www.camerabits.com/products/ca...)

This is not an outrageous request, and as others have pointed out, you don't have your facts straight.
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Walker Blackwell

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Dear community.

I'd like to mention that it is very much possible to run a Lightroom catalogue over (even a slow) network shared HD on at least OS X.

Simply create a sparse disk-image on some server share and pop the catalogue in there and then mount it from your remote machine. :) I've done it a couple thousand (maybe tens of thousands) times. I even did it in a pinch over a fiber internet connection many thousands of miles away once.

Make sure to keep the preview folder and lock db in the same sparse disk image.

What is not possible yet (and everyone is rightfully frustrated about this I think) is a professional multi-user approach. Even if this was implemented as file-system level access with versioned (invisible?) sidecars and basic user-land locking with almost ZERO programming on LR's part it would be a huge benefit to the professional community and like any first foot forward, Adobe would probably reap the benefits in as-of-yet untold ways.

>> I'm thinking if Bridge just merged w/ LR. Something people have talked about for years now.

But for individual networked stored Lightroom catalogues, I've been doing it since v1. http://theagnosticprint.org/how-to-ne...

---

Why is this important? Well, because when Lightroom supports files from forty-grand backs the users who are pumping files through LR are working on collaborative high-pressure, high-speed environments with a lot of moving parts. Watching LR be single-machine only is like seeing a 90 year old walk into the middle of a rave. I apologize to the 90 year olds on this list. You all rock and would probably dance the pants off everyone else.

Best,
Walker
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Victoria Bampton - Lightroom Queen, Champion

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Without wishing to put a damper on things, it should be noted that this 'solution' is discouraged by the engineers who built it, as it's potentially a data-loss situation if the connection drops at the wrong moment. Anyone who chooses to try it obviously does so at their own risk.

(And yes, I've voted on the request too!)
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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In general, I agree that having LR access a catalog over a network hasn't been rigorously tested and that there's some risk of data loss (a risk that I personally wouldn't want to take).

But a technical clarification for those considering the solution above: The experiments that Dan Tull reported in this thread were for a much different configuration -- LR on Windows XP accessing the catalog via the SMB file protocol on a Mac server. The configuration described above, placing the catalog on a Mac disk image that is accessed via a different network protocol, is much different than that tested by Dan, with a likely different risk. Unfortunately, we have no recent, authoritative, rigorous testing of either configuration.

(And I too have voted for the request.)
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Mark Swink

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So Adobe would rather that the users be forced to use a system such as dropbox to make the lrcat file functional over a network? Seems to me to be a very bad approach to design. Wouldn't it be better if the designers kept control of the network tools? Don't kid yourself, many people are using workaround to make LR a functional software.
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Rob Cole

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Reminder: having catalog on a thumb drive (or a retired camera card...) and passing it around is an awefully easy work-around for the mean time (keep previews separately). - no need for dropbox, unless of course you have a distributed "office"... I don't mean to diss the desire for true network support (and obviously this doesn't help with the multi-user aspect), but it may be a path of less resistance for now, instead of a big honken USB drive and cable required...
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Allan Olesen

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Well, I would think that the solution with a disk image mounted over the network is even more vulnerable.

If you write to a file on a remote server, and the network connection is lost, this file will of course be corrupted. But the file system on the remote server will still be intact since that is handled by the remote server which still has contact to the disk.

But if you mount a disk image from a remote server and writes to a file inside this disk image, and the connection is lost, you also lose the connection between the file system and the computer which handles the file system. This means that you risk corrupting the entire disk image, not only the single file you were writing to.

In my opinion, a shared catalog should run as a dedicated network service. So instead of sharing a file on a server, a database server application should run on that server, and each Lightroom installation should be a client to that database server. This is the best way to ensure data integrity and avoid locking problems.

Of course that would probably also mean that Adobe would feel entitled to demand a very high price for the server software so it would be out of reach for anyone who doesn't make a living editing photos - including me.
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Mark Swink

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All I know is that this functionality is something that almost all other software has and it is nothing more than a decision by Adobe to not include this in their products. Because of the decision by Adobe, I have been forced to make the decision that I will not purchase any further upgrades until such time as this basic functionality is included. If enough of us refuse to purchase upgrades unless they include this feature that we have been asking for since day 1, then maybe the hurt to their bottom line will be enough that they will get the hint. It is apparent that we must hurt them where they live. Let them take a loss on the next version without networking ability and maybe the stock holders will put some pressure on them to get off their arses and get serious about this feature.
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stuartpeckphoto

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With some scripting knowledge and http://regex.info/blog/lightroom-good...

You can export as catalog, yes not exactly a shared workflow but with identical catalogs and 'shared storage' then you get round the issue. Media can happily sit on ethernet storage
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stuartpeckphoto

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Have you got more than one machine that you edit images on?

Are you tired of having to export and import your settings in order to get all your machines the same?

Wouldn't networked drives with media make so much more sense?

How about Lightroom Server? A central place that holds all your catalog specific data, presets and settings which is then rolled out via a server?

Lightroom clients can log on and download settings

This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Lightroom Server?.
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Florian Kleinschmidt

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Here's another vote for a multi-machine support.
I'm working for a local newspaper and I'm the only one in the team still using lightroom.
The reason my colleagues (and often me too) got frustrated is simple: Most of the time we have to work on location with mobile computers. After the assignment we have to import the catalogue from our mobile netbooks to our main computers with the attached network storage. That means, that we have to do this kind of switch many times a day (we only have small SSDs on our netbooks)!
I love how easy you can edit RAW-images on the run in Lightroom but - to be honest - the workflow is a pain in the... . And I don't think that it is that "exotic".
Please solve this problem. You would save us so much time.
It would be worth it.
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Mark Swink

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If Adobe doesn't get it together, there will be many more of us joining your colleagues as ex-users of LR. Adobe seems to be trying to eliminate LR from the product lineup by not providing what the customers want.
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Robert Ardill

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At this point I would be very happy if it was possible to have a catalog, on the network, with a basic locking mechanism so that only one user could access it at a time.

However... the catalog would also need to map the image directories on the network so that a user on a different computer would not have to re-map each directory (or Update the Folder Location, to use Lightroom terminology).

We have tens of thousands of images which cannot be split into separate projects ... and because of this limitation we are having to use the one PC to do all of the selecting, rating, editing, developing, publishing etc. That means that one PC has to be dedicated to the task, and if one of us needs to work on the images we have to physically walk over to the PC to do the work.

I've been watching this thread and I see that an Adobe employee, Dan Tull, is keeping an eye on it ... but I would like Adobe to make a definitive statement on whether or not it will implement some form of catalog sharing and when we can expect it.
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Mark Swink

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It would be great if Adobe would make such a definitive statement so I will know if I should be shopping for a LR replacement. I will not buy any future upgrades that don't include network catalog support. Not just for the image files, but for the lrcat file as well!!
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stuartpeckphoto

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You make a valid point about corrupt files. However, LR nor adobe can be responsible for poor implementation of servers, raid and back up / fail over. This is what you get into once talking about shared solutions.

But, there should ALWAYS be a local copy of a catalog(in metadata, whether that be a cache file or a full catalog), when data has been written to that local copy, it is then sent to the remote location, (which could be a preference in LR)but only until the local copy has been completed. Therefore you always have your data.

Working from servers although widely used in corporate environments has it's downsides, I think a more fluid way to export as catalog and relink media should deal with most people's needs. For example, talking about Florian Kleinschmidt's workflow. For Florian to do all the mobile work, create catalog and log. Then once back in the office, save catalog in a 'collect for output' stage, like a pre flight step, then for the media to be updated via a 'update media location' menu click

This doesn't solve you doing the same thing multiple times a day, but surely by working from your laptop, compiling media then doing the export 'once' is easier than doing it lots of times. OK, so you have small SSD drives, you could use external FW or thunderbolt in order to give you more storage, that's not a limitation of adobe and LR but a limitation of your workflow and equipment used.

For LR to be re coded with MySQL in order to use server based and server based search queries will take a fair few years I would imagine.
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Mark Swink

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LR is already on SQL. The problem is that Adobe chose to use SQLlite instead of full blown SQL. At least working from a server with RAID and programmed backups will provide a fall back position for a corrupt catalog. In the current forced method, unless someone is dedicated to doing their own backup, the catalog is GONE when the HD fails. HD failure is not an if scenario, but is just a matter of when. Thankfully, using dropbox to keep the lrcat file synced provides not only a backup, but a work around to this Adobe forced limitation. By using selective sync and only syncing the lrcat file instead of the all the previews, dropbox is a fairly quick solution to a single user, multiple location problem. Maybe Adobe should contract with dropbox to teach the Adobe engineers how to make it work.
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stuartpeckphoto

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Yes, as I said, MySQL. That's the reason it's not server based, MySQL isn't very good with wide search criteria at the best of times, given many attached users to a database makes it worse. It's not a great database model to begin with.

"At least working from a server with RAID and programmed backups will provide a fall back position for a corrupt catalog"

Yes, but it has to be local to prevent a catastrophic fail to begin with. Otherwise you'll only be going back to a corrupt version.

" the catalog is GONE when the HD fails"

I'm not sure you read my post. The catalog is saved locally in a cache or catalog file, then sent up to the server, but only when it has been completed(checksum complete). Therefore, you ALWAYS have a good copy because A, you have a local copy, B, that local copy has been checked and uploaded to a sever. Then even if your local HD fails, your catalog is safe on the server. This ENSURES that you DO NOT back up corrupt catalogs or losse data saving across network storage

To use Dropbox which is totally unencrypted and rife for hacking is probably not a wise choice, but I have just described that exact server workflow in the previous post
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Kevin Rank

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I'd like to point out, Dropbox IS encrypted. Both ON the server, and on the transfer, and if you want to use it, also has 2-factor authentication which is far more secure than a plain password.
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Axiom

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okay I simply HAVE to chime in again...
I use databases every. single. day.
and I would bet dollars to donuts that this very forum is MySQL driven, so please don't muddy the waters with "opinions" about "database performance".

MySQL does just fine in a workgroup of say 20-100 people with 5000+ polls on the database per second, it's why it's the defacto goto database for the web.

SQLite is NOT built to be share friendly depending on file system - so what will work for mac will not work for windows due to the open source SQLite and closed "read licensing requirements" source of MS's NTFS filesytem.

There is no reason why the catalogue can't be shared on any "mainstream" network. Be it at home or in a corporate environment. It just wasn't written that way because adobe was lazy, and cheap. Which I might ad on the later was a bit refreshing as the weak product didn't cost a fortune like the rest of CS...

There is ALSO no need for a "server" to implement this. Cripes you can use windows 3.1 and mac os 7, a router, or heck, even a simple hub, and click "share folder" and you're done. So there's you're high tech complicated ability to share something all blown to away.

Going on about raid and servers and gigabit networks are all well and good but they do not make for anything other than redundancy for back up and speed.

To sum up, it would not take "years" to rewrite lightroom to work on mySQL.

So please those of your chiming in that it would be nice to see sharing, and why you need it - just leave it at that. It's tiring to read justified rants that are also misguided.