Lightroom: synchronize folder should match missing files with found files

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  • Updated 1 year ago
  • (Edited)
When synchronizing a folder, if it finds photos to import and photos that are missing, it should check to see if they are the same ones and just update the location.

I'm assuming lightroom is already doing the check to see if they are already in the catalog for the import process so it'd be very easy to notice that hey, it's the same file, it just got moved to a subfolder.

Why *I* want this:
In my workflow I use autopano to find my panoramas and move them to a subfolder called panos/panoname So then for each set of images in a panorama I have to specifiy find missing files. I usually try and detect my panoramas before I add any metadata so I can just add and remove (only cost is rebuild preview time) but that definitely doesn't always happen because detecting panoramas is not ideal on my laptop and I often need to rate/review my images.
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Bryn Forbes

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Posted 7 years ago

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Brett N, Official Rep

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I see what you mean. This technically wasn't what Synchronizing Folder was meant for, but I certainly see where it makes sense and can clear things up. The way it works now you loose any metadata you've already attached to the file in Lightroom.
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Bryn Forbes

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I'm sure internally it's a call to import and a separate call to remove, so it may not be easy to do, but it would certainly help with the all to common issue of missing files. you could run it on the root folder and have it refind anything in that directory which would be great for people that haven't had the "don't move it outside of lightroom" mantra beat in to them.

My workaround is to sort by edit count and/or rating and try and figure out which ones I've changed go through the find missing files dialog for the ones taht I've rated, keyworded or made develop module changes, and for the rest remove and reimport at their current location (related idea http://feedback.photoshop.com/photosh... )
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Rob Cole

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I think this is a niche that could also be filled by a plugin, if the tools were provided in the SDK: Just a rename/move function would allow it to be done manually, but an import/sync hook could make it automatic.
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Bryn Forbes

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additionally, when importing, if a file is a "suspected duplicate" but the original is marked as offline or missing, prompt the user if they want to update the location
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Bryn Forbes

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Having taught a lightroom class recently where the vast majority of the problems new users have, are missing files, I think making synchronize/import automatically recognize the missing files and prompt the user to bring them would be huge.
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Benedikt Zwölfer

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It seems since 4 years nothing happened... I have often the here described annoying dialogue.(Just imagine you dare to reorganize you library folders). But much worse, often Lightroom does not accept the newly allocated folder!! The folder stays (after showing it to lightroom) greyed out and with a question mark. It's exactly the same folder with exactly the same pictures but doesn't accept. LIGHTROOM 5 on Mac OS 10.10.5, but happened often during the last years...
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Bryn Forbes

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Really what Lightroom needs is a "search for my missing files over in this other folder tree" feature (would be dramatically helped if lightroom kept checksums for jpgs, raws instead of just DNG.
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georg m

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"search for my missing files over in this other folder tree" - yes please!

i have my current files in folders on my local HD, when the project is finished i move them to an external drive. i do that outside of lightroom to have the possibility of a move, where the data is also verified. then i have to reopen lightroom and point it to every single folder, even though all the folders are on the same level next to each other.
(of course if i could move safely within lightroom i wouldn't need this option anymore, but i'm sure it's helpful in other scenarios)
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Bryn Forbes

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georg m, have you tried right clicking on missing folder, and say show parent folder, all the way up to the drive name/letter and then right clicking on it and say update folder location to tell it all the folders are on a different drive?   Of course I still think Adobe needs to add some intelligence to finding missing folders.
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georg m

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hi bryn, thanks. i'm not sure this route would work as i am not moving ALL folders out of the internal drive at once (only finished jobs).

but what works for me now is this:
- create a folder called "shuttle to ext drive" inside LR on the same level as the folders to be moved
- in LR move all the folders that need moving into that shuttle-folder (still on the internal drive)
- then quit LR and move shuttle-folder to the external drive with file verification (i use teracopy)
- then reopen LR and use "update folder location" for the shuttle folder
- then  in LR move everything out of the shuttle folder up one level to its final destination
- then in LR move the empty shuttle folder back to the internal drive for the next shuttle-job

sounds more complicated than it is. maybe this helps others.