Lightroom: Photo order MUST sync in albums across Lightroom (web, desktop,etc) and Shared Albums in Lightroom as well as Portfolio

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  • Updated 7 months ago
  • (Edited)
The single most important feature of a Shared Album is that it presents the BEST images first and the overall album tells a story. At present, it is possible, though cumbersome, to do this within the Lightroom App, but it is impossible to share the user-defined custom order either as part of a Shared Album via Link Access or via Adobe Portfolio. This is a dealbreaker for the product in my view. Who cares if I can view an album in a custom order on my own desktop, but I can't share that view with anyone?  Photographers want to share their work and their story. By hamstringing their ability to do this and forcing them to share only chronologically by Creation Date, Adobe has made a product that is inferior even to free sites like Google Photos (which I was trying to escape specifically because it also doesn't allow for Filename sort within albums).

Picasa had this feature 15 years ago. Why is it so difficult to implement today?

What I would like to see:
1) Lightroom Albums can be sorted initially by various factors. Personally, I would sort from best-to-worst by Star Rating, with photos that have the same star rating being shown in chronological order.
2) Ability to manually move photos into a Custom Order from this starting point (e.g., I could move a 5-star photo from the third position in an album to #1 in an album if it tells the story better)
3) Ability to save this Custom Order as the default view for everyone who views it on the web, via a private link or within a MyPortfolio album.

At present, only the first of these features is available. #2 is a nice-to-have, but #3 is fundamental and absolutely critical to each and every album that I've ever created and without this feature I'm unable to bring myself to bother even going through the process of sharing photos.

For example, why would I spend a bunch of time using the Develop and Photoshop elements of Lightroom on an image if I know that the resulting masterpiece is going to be relegated to #132 of a 200 photo album? Nobody will ever see it there. The only reason for me to spend time using any of the other fancy features that Adobe might create within Photoshop Lightroom is that I'm able to share the photo with others in an efficient manner.

It is catastrophically disappointing that this feature wasn't included in Beta Version 1.0 of the first Lightroom product. The fact that this is still lacking after many years and thousands of user requests makes me weep in my soul.

I tried transitioning from Picasa / Google Photos to Lightroom, but without this feature I'm going to have to go back to Picasa -- perhaps with SmugMug as the album sharing site (since it will at least allow me to sort by filename).
Photo of Del


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Posted 7 months ago

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Photo of tpnotes


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#2 is working for me with LR Classic and Mobile for iOS . I am not using Lr CC, so I can not speak for that

#3 - all my Adobe Portfolio projects are custom ordered and are displayed as intended. In the past I shared a link to an album via Lr Web with a custom order and that worked as well.

I am not sure why you can not see those options.
Photo of Luke Rymarz

Luke Rymarz, Official Rep

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Hi Del,

Lightroom Web can do all these things! (We just need to work on discoverabliliy a bit... ahem.)

Once your album is synced, log in at, find your album, and click into the "Display" view (it's a little pallette icon on the bottom next to the grid modes).  Here's what it looks like:

There's a menu there that will allow you to reorder by star rating, and then you can reorder manually with Drag/Drop.  All the ordering you set there will be seen by anyone who views your share.


Photo of Del


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Thank you for responding, but I don't get this at all. When I go into the Display area within an album shared via, there is no "Reorder by" option in my display. All I see is the photos in the shared album ordered by Capture Date...
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Jim Wilde, Champion

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Can you post a screenshot of what you are seeing, so that we can figure out what's happening?

But to repeat what Luke said, first of all you need to be logged into your Adobe ID at, then you need to select the specific album you're trying to re-order. Once selected, you need to click on the Display icon at the bottom of the page (looks like a palette), that then should give you the correct display with all the controls needed for sorting/ordering the images as desired.
Photo of Edmund Gall

Edmund Gall

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Hi Del! To support what Jim Wilde wrote above, if you accessed the shared album using the link/url normally given to your customers, then you may not be automatically logged into your online account to view the additional controls that aren't available to your customers. If that's the case, in the upper right corner of the album's webpage, there should be a Sign In icon: click on that to provide your Adobe ID and password. Once logged in, you should see the extra controls provided to you as the album's owner...
Photo of Del


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I've figured out how to get what I'm looking for, albeit in a very clunky fashion. I need to first sort the album in reverse order in Lightroom by star rating (5-->1) and then I need to move at least one photo out of order so Lightroom thinks it is a custom order. Then I can sync the album with Portfolio in the reverse Star order. THEN I can begin re-ordering with my higher star ratings *roughly* retained in Portfolio.

A key challenge is that the sorting is now out-of-synch between Lightroom and Portfolio, so I will need to re-do any of those changes if I ever want to add images or make changes within Lightroom.

Doesn't seem like it should be this hard...