What happened? Strange duplication and fragmentation of folder structure during folder move attempt

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  • Updated 2 years ago
MacPro os x 10.9,  Lightroom 2015.8

Using Lightroom, I tried to move a large folder structure of 24,000 photos from the primary internal drive to a secondary internal drive, which had enough space .  In Lightroom, I  dragged the parent folder and dropped it into the new hard drive.  After a long time of processing, an error message popped that LR could not complete the move.

Strangely, what I have now is two complete identical copies of the folder structure framework (names of folders properly positioned).  However, 17,000 of the pics are scattered in the new location, and 7,000 pics remain scattered in the original location - all in their correct folders in one or the other location.  The folders in the original location that still have unmoved pics do not have all their pics.  Some or all were moved from each folder and some left behind.  Only about 70% of the original folders had all their pics moved.  The other 30% of original folders still have some, but not all, of their pics.

Further strangeness is that In Mac's Finder, the old folders are completely empty.  The folders are in Finder but none have pics.  This is confirmed by Get Info, which shows a folder size of only 240 KB for the entire structure.  But there really are 6,000 pics left in the old folders on the primary drive as shown in Lightroom "Folders".  Even more strange, under Lightroom "Folders" for the original folder structure, the folders that had their pics moved have their names greyed out but they do not have question marks.  However, most the folders that still have some of their pics are greyed out and have question marks.  And a few original folders with some remaining pics are not even greyed out, though most of their pics were moved.

The folder structure in the new location has a Finder size of 563 GB.  Unfortunately, I do not know the size before I attempted the move.

Question:  How do I join the original folder structure with its remaining pics into the structure in the new location?

Thanks in advance for the answer.

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Posted 2 years ago

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Photo of Rikk Flohr

Rikk Flohr, Official Rep

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The first step would be to go to the Folders panel in Library and update the location for any folders that show a "?". Right click on the folder and use the Find Missing Folder option to point to the correct location. Once all of your folders have been relinked, you can use the Find Missing Photos command to make sure you are clean on the file level.