Previews lost upon upgrade from LR CC 2015 to LR Classic CC

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  • Updated 3 years ago
I have a large catalog (~500,000 images) and typically remove the originals from my HD after importing into LR and backing them up to BR disks and an external hard-drive.  I then identify images to work on based on the previews and restore the full images from the BR disks as needed. After upgrading to LR Classic CC the only previews in the catalog were for images that happened to have been restored to HD for my current project.  

After working with support this evening (did a great job, thanks!) the conclusion was that I need to relink to the original files to get the previews in the LR Classic catalog.  There appears to be no way to leverage the previews built previously for LR CC 2015.  Given the large number of original files, this is not a feasible option for me and the support person helped me revert to the 2015 version.

The support person will escalate this appropriately through Adobe channels, but I also wanted to record this here as support for others in my situation.  Of course if there is a way to transfer the old previews to the Classic catalog without restoring the original images I'd love to hear about it.
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Joel Weichsel

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Posted 3 years ago

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James Kochanowicz

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Makes you wonder how much unit test and beta testing was done! Adobe should be more careful in the future. Breaking so much is unacceptable.
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Shannon Hobbs

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This is one of many reasonsI have not migrated my catalog. I will continue to classic and am only testing the new mobile version on my mobile phone. Too many issues with this release for sure.
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Akshay Mathur, Employee

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sorry to hear about your experience.
"There appears to be no way to leverage the previews built previously for LR CC 2015" is not actually correct. While upgrading the catalog for LrClassic we actually rename the Previews folder according to the new catalog name.
If you have moved the catalog file for upgrade.
You can use the new upgraded catalog with old previews by just renaming the folder from

"OldName Previews.lrdata"  to "NewName Previews.lrdata"

Hope this helps.
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Joel Weichsel

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Per Akshay's advice I renamed the new preview folder created during the upgrade from

Lightroom Catalog-2 Previews.lrdata
Lightroom Catalog-2 Previews per upgrade.lrdata 

(just to avoid deleting it prematurely). 

I then renamed the old preview folder with all the previously created previews from

Lightroom Catalog Previews.lrdata
Lightroom Catalog-2 Previews.lrdata.

Upon launching LR Classic on "Lightroom Catalog-2.lrcat", previews were back for all images, problem solved.  

Thanks Akshay!