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I have two external drives with distinct images on each. I purchased a third and want to get the images off the original two drives and move it into a new folder structure (year/event name).

I’m having trouble getting this done. How exactly is the best way to get light room to help identify all the image/video files on each external drive and allow me to manually move sets of images into new folders on the new drive. I want to non-destructively copy files to the new drive while not changing anything on the original drives.

Of interest is:

  1. Do I need even minimal previews since ill be working with all the drives online at once.

  2. How best to clear out all the leg work and start fresh with files of my new drive. I don’t want to leave junk around.

marked as duplicate by mattdm, Paul Cezanne, AJ Henderson, MikeW, jwenting Jun 10 '14 at 11:52

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • the answer is missing the most important part: a stepwise outline of how to go about getting images to the new drive. I cant get a new blank drive to show in LR. only drives with images that were imported. I would prefer to copy files to the new drive instead of move them so not to alter the original drives in any way. – – kacalapy Jun 4 '14 at 11:46
  • If it's just missing that one part, then best to ask a specific (new) question about that missing part. – MikeW Jun 4 '14 at 19:19
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One way to do it is to copy the files from both drives onto the new drive outside of LightRoom, in Finder or Explorer. Then, unplug the first two drives.

Start LightRoom, and navigate to the images in the library. Right click on the folder(s) the images are in, and click "Find Missing Folder" and navigate to the same folder on the new drive. It should find the folder and the images in it.

This article goes through the process in more depth.

  • What if I am not sure where the images are? In an old windows backup i have folders all over the C drive... in users/documents... in custom folders, on desktop... who knows where – kacalapy Jun 4 '14 at 17:19
  • Oh, for that you can use the system's "find file" to find RAW, JPEG, and other images, then copy them to the new drive. – Jeremiah Jun 4 '14 at 18:21

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