I’ve been having issues with Lightroom lately. It is, no doubt, operating exactly the way it is meant to, but problematically I don’t know how that is. So I messed around with some files and life has been miserable and now I have split my libraries and am re-importing all 40,000 some images. Jeepers.
So in an effort to divide my images over two drives and have back-ups of each, here is my solution from the beginning.
Hard drive one has two initial folders – one marked IMAGES, the other marked LIBRARY. The images go into IMAGES (duh) and then I open Lightroon, create a new catalogue and specify the LIBRARY folder. It then creates all it’s needed folders and files therein. Now import the images and specify the IMAGES folder as your source. Presto.
Now open the preferences in Lightroom and have it backup your library according to your personal preferences – I like it done every time Lightroom starts. It will then ask you WHERE to back up the catalogue, and that’s where drive number two comes in. In drive number two I have two folders as well. One marked BACKUP IMAGES, one marked BACKUP CATALOGUE (although I still use the word "library"). Specify BACKUP CATALOGUE as the destination for these backups. Now you just have to copy all your image files (I know, this is a heavy time commitment) to the BACKUP IMAGES folder on the second drive.
From now on when you import images you specify Drive 1, the IMAGES folder, and whatever subfolder structure you like, for the new images, and in the Backup to: dialogue specify the same subfolder in the BACKUP IMAGES folder on Drive 2. Now you have your images backed up, and your catalogues backed up.
One more thing I have done to make this all a little easier to navigate, I took down my logoed custom identity plate and simply put in – PIXELATED IMAGE Library -2004-2006 – or PIXELATED IMAGE Library 2007, so I can immediately tell which catalogue I am using and which drives I am working out of.
I’m betting there are more elegant solutions to all this and I’m eager to hear about them if you have them. But for now, this is my solution – it’s easy for me to remember and the files are where I need them all. Sure, I need four 500gb drives, but if one crashes, I’m golden.