Home · Register · Software · Software · Join Upload & Sell

Moderated by: Fred Miranda

  New fredmiranda.com Mobile Site
  New Feature: SMS Notification alert
  New Feature: Buy & Sell Watchlist

FM Forums | General Gear-talk | Join Upload & Sell


Archive 2012 · need help with hard drive setup / library configuration
• • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · need help with hard drive setup / library configuration

hey all,

so i'm currently running an iMac with a 1TB hard drive, which i have automatically backup to an external drive.

problem is at this point the internal hard drive is almost completely full, and my performance is going to hell.

so i'm confused about the best way to handle this. right now all my images are in a lightroom library. do i split that into two libraries and keep current/in process work on the internal hard drive, and move all the tier 2 crap over to an external? i'm worried about breaking up the library. but i guess i have to do something because i can't run lightroom off an external drive, correct? (i don't have thunderbolt... it'd be usb or whatever. wouldn't that be ridiculously slow when trying to edit a bunch of 30 MB images?)

and then if i split things into two libraries, how do i configure my hard drives? keep one external with all the tier 2 images on it and basically never look at it, and another external that has a backup of the internal drive on it along with the current/relevant images?

i'm trying to think of a setup that's going to work going forward, because in another year i'm going to blow through another TB of space, so i need some kind of sustainable setup. i just find it confusing and i'm not sure what the best way to approach this is.

any thoughts? thanks

Jul 25, 2012 at 03:02 AM
Steve Wylie
• • •
Upload & Sell: On
p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · need help with hard drive setup / library configuration

I have a similar problem, but with an internal 2TB drive on my iMac. I already backup my photos on a 3TB Western Digital external drive. My Lightroom catalog, at it's largest, was ridiculously huge, 115,000 images since I installed LR3. My first strategy was to go back and delete everything in my LR3 catalog that wasn't a "pick". That reduced my library significantly (maybe by 70%). That gave me some breathing room. I still have a very large LR catalog, but my 3TB external drive still has everything I've shot since I got the iMac.

I'm about to install LR4. I think my strategy will be to simply move my LR3 images to another external drive (I have three), and start with a fresh, new LR4 catalog. My reason for this is a concern over the advisability of starting my new LR4 install with a 40,000 image catalog brought in from LR3 with its outdated process version. I've edited those images already, and moved on.

So basically, I'm thinking that it's best to move your stuff that isn't "current" to a new drive. You can still find them in your LR catalog if you update the moved images by pointing LR to the new drive.

Hope this helps, and I'll be looking for anyone else's advice on this topic, too.

Jul 25, 2012 at 06:08 AM
• • •
Upload & Sell: Off
p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · need help with hard drive setup / library configuration


Jul 26, 2012 at 01:20 PM
• • • •
Upload & Sell: On
p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · need help with hard drive setup / library configuration

LR's catalog size is not the issue, it's the photos themselves that take up the space. A fare amount of detail has not been provided here so I can only guess at how LR has been managed to this point. Assuming that it HAS NOT been the dumping ground for every photo taken regardless, then some sort of DAM (digital asset management) process is needed. Ex) maybe sort them by date, and place those more than a year old on the external drive. Another approach, move all edited photos (ie the ones you are done with) to an external drive. There are many other possible scenarios, and the one right for you is the one you will actually follow. At the end of the day, some of the photos have got to move over to an external source. Only you can decide which ones makes the most sense.

Now, if every photo ever taken currently resides on your internal drive then "cleaning up" the rat pack is the first step. In general, the "hoarding" approach to photography is a loosing proposition. One must get comfortable with the "delete" button.


Jul 29, 2012 at 02:51 PM

FM Forums | General Gear-talk | Join Upload & Sell


You are not logged in. Login or Register

Username     Reset password