Join Chris Orwig for an in-depth discussion in this video Keeping your catalog current by synchronizing folders, part of Lightroom 4 Catalogs in Depth.
So far we've been learning that one of the functions of the Lightroom catalog is to keep track of our images. It's to keep track of where these images are located and also what their named. And here I want to take a look at how we can keep our folders up to date by using another technique. Well, here I am inside of this People folder. I've clicked on this image lynda-1.jpg. This is a portrait of the one, the only Lynda from lynda.com. And let's say that what I want to do is I want to get rid of this image, I don't want this image inside of my catalog.
Well, to do that you press the Delete key. This opens up this dialog, which says, do you want to "Delete the selected master photo from your disk or just remove it from Lightroom"? Well, here what I want to do, just to demo is I'm going to press Remove. What this will do is that will simply remove this image from the Lightroom catalog. It's as if it doesn't exist, although the JPG, well, it's still on the hard drive. Let's take a look. If we navigate to the People folder, then right-click or Ctrl+Click, we can choose Show in Finder.
This will open up the Finder window and I'll go ahead and expand that, and there you can see we have this image, lynda-1.jpg. Well, upon seeing this, I realized I have made a grave mistake because that is one of my all-time favorite portraits, it actually is. I want Lightroom to know that this file exists. Well, how can I re-integrate or re-import that image back into my catalog? Well, what you can do is back in Lightroom if you click on the folder, you can then right-click or Ctrl+Click and choose Synchronize folder.
This will then open up this dialog. It says, "Synchronizing keeps your Lightroom catalog up to date with the latest changes you may have made." Here it notices that there's an image in that folder that isn't part of the Lightroom catalog. So what do want to do? Well, here what I want to do is simply synchronize this. So I'll click Synchronize, it will then import in this photograph and it can show me this picture here. I'll also be able to see this by simply clicking on the folder, and we can see that this is now located inside of this folder, and we'll go ahead and double-click on that image, so that it shows the photograph in a little bit more of a zoomed up or loop view.
So by right-clicking or Ctrl+Clicking and choosing Synchronize folder, again it can keep your folders up to date. Let's look at another scenario where this might be helpful. In order to show this, I'm going to hide Lightroom. I'll do that by pressing Command+H. Here I am on my desktop. On the desktop you can see I have that Finder window open, here is my People folder. And I have another picture. It's titled jeff.jpg, another portrait. I all of a sudden decide I want to add this to my folder there.
So outside of Lightroom; "behind Lightroom's back," I make another change. So here I'll click on this image, and then drag and drop that image into the People folder. And when I go back to Lightroom what I'm going to discover is that it just doesn't know that image exists. It's not automatically checking your folders, you need to tell it that you've made a change in another application or outside of Lightroom. Again the way that we do that is to right-click or Ctrl+Click, and here once again, we'll choose Synchronize folder.
It says, hey I noticed an image in that folder, we want to integrate that into this, so here we can then click Synchronize and it will then bring that image into this folder, and we can see that it shows up here in our folder. Well, so far we've taken a look at how we can deal with a situation where there's an image that Lightroom doesn't recognize, we need to tell Lightroom that's there. Well, what about the opposite scenario? What if an image had been removed from a folder and Lightroom didn't know that happened? Let's take a look, again Command+H. Here I'll select this image jeff.jpg, and I'll drag this to my desktop.
So now I've removed this image from that folder. Again making a change "behind Lightroom's back." Well, if I navigate back to Lightroom, you notice that this image has this question mark on it. I could either choose to relocate this file or if I just want that image out of my Lightroom catalog, again you can Synchronize. Here, right-click or Ctrl+Click and choose Synchronize Folder. This basically tells me, you know what, you have a photo here that doesn't exist anywhere else. I can't find this on the hard drive.
So if I click Synchronize all that it will do is remove that photo from this folder. So here in conclusion, you can see that you can use this technique of synchronizing your folders in order to keep your catalogs up to date.
- Comparing RAID storage to JBOD storage
- Finding images in a catalog
- Importing images
- Understanding the difference between catalogs, collections, and folders
- Optimizing catalogs and upgrading legacy catalogs
- Merging catalogs
- Relinking images
- Solving conflicts with new hard drives
- Restoring from backups
- Saving adjustments to raw files