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Copied files no longer accessible.


24 Feb 2018 2:57PM
I have recently had to buy a new laptop. Most of my photos are saved on external drives so it didn't seem to be a great problem to configure a new laptop. However when the dust began to settle Lightroom catalogue revealed that there were 5,000 photos missing. I was not overly troubled by this as I know that most things I want to keep are saved at least twice. But last weekend I thought that most of the files that were missing were from a particular external drive. So I used to Recuva and 'recovered' around 3,000 files. But for some unknown (to me) reason none of them seem to be accessible. I have tried a number of solutions offered on the web when I google the problem. One of the solutions was to open the file in Notepad and there would be a clue there as to whether the extension was the correct extension. I have just tried this and the file is in Japanese. Any ideas from anyone!

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RoyBoy 15 303 2 United Kingdom
24 Feb 2018 5:15PM
If you have backed up your images to an external drive you obviously have them safe. LightRoom does store image, just sidecar files that link to them which also contain any LightRoom adjustments you have made.
I think the problem you are experiencing might simply be that LightRoom was looking for the files under the original drive reference, (such as DSmile and cannot find it. Try plugging in your external drive, make a note of the drive reference. Go back to LightRoom and right mouse click on the drive that cannot be found. You then get an option to find the missing folder and simply point it to that on your external drive. Hopefully it should then show your missing images.
lobsterboy Plus
16 14.9k 13 United Kingdom
24 Feb 2018 5:35PM

Quote:I know that most things I want to keep are saved at least twice. But last weekend I thought that most of the files that were missing were from a particular external drive. So I used to Recuva and 'recovered' around 3,000 files.

OK, so if they are saved twice, why not try accessing the second copy ?


Quote:One of the solutions was to open the file in Notepad and there would be a clue there as to whether the extension was the correct extension. I have just tried this and the file is in Japanese.

That will just be a file that notepad does not understand - I would expect that for any image file.

duratorque 17 427 United Kingdom
24 Feb 2018 5:37PM
Lightroom can not be used to access files in an external drive. You need to copy the files onto the internal HD and then tell LR where the files are.
lobsterboy Plus
16 14.9k 13 United Kingdom
24 Feb 2018 5:51PM

Quote:Lightroom can not be used to access files in an external drive. You need to copy the files onto the internal HD and then tell LR where the files are.


Sorry but you are wrong about that - the restriction is that the Catalogue cannot be on a network drive. Your images can be on an external drive, I have 30,00 images on netwrok drives and Lightroom has no trouble accessing them.
24 Feb 2018 6:29PM
Ah my friends I am afraid you have all misunderstood - I obviously didn't make it clear. It was only the fact that before I changed computers Lightroom was registering 5000 files more images than on the new computer. Lightroom was simply a nudge to try and find the missing files. At no time was Lightroom used to find them. The total of files including all the external drives was 5000 less. I knew pretty much what was on the external files which is why I pinpointed one external drive. Recuva did find over 3000 but these are the ones which are unreadable. The notepad file is not 'computer' speak but Japanese and I don't think that any programme naturally writes Japanese unless you are in Japan and it is a text file.

And in answer to Royboy - there are some files which I know are missing and they are not on any drive, which just means I wasn't as diligent in copying stuff as I thought.
Philh04 Plus
14 2.2k United Kingdom
25 Feb 2018 9:48AM
I assume that you knew that there was a problem with that particular drive and that the files needed recovering... It has been a long time since I used the Windows OS, can the files be seen in Explorer? I seem to remember the last time I had to recover files they were identified by an addition either to the file name or extension that made them appear not to be readable files and I had to do a batch rename, not much help I know....
25 Feb 2018 10:59AM
Actually it is Phil. The files are there in Explorer but not visible - just an icon. Having searched the web the advise was to open in Paint - but that couldn't open them either. I am pretty convinced that it would be possible to open if I could find the key - hence the opening a file in Notepad. I now wonder, if for some reason unknown to me, Recuva has translated the files into Japanese. The clue to this was that the corrupted files caused a problem with Bridge so I uninstalled it, did an Adobe CC Cleaner and then reinstalled, and during that process I was asked if I wanted a) English or b) Japanese. I'm pretty much convinced, having spent most of yesterday trying to sort things (with quite a lot of help from Adobe) it is a lost cause.
Chris_L 6 5.5k United Kingdom
25 Feb 2018 11:42AM

Quote:Recuva has translated the files into Japanese
It definitely has not, you are jumping to the wrong conclusions and taking the wrong actions based on those.

Opening non-text files in programs like Notepad means you might see characters that look Japanese but that's Notepad trying to make sense of files it isn't built to work with.

When you started your new laptop and the Lr catalog reported 5000 missing files you jumped to the conclusion that the files had been deleted and you then used file recovery software.

I reckon Lightroom didn't know where they were and they just needed relinking.

Sounds like scanning with Recuva has brought back to life corrupted and partly overwritten files, older versions, temp files, thumbnails etc etc causing a massive mess.
Fma7 5 1.1k United Kingdom
25 Feb 2018 11:43AM
Perhaps you could stick a file or two on here to download and let the gurus have a poke around?
25 Feb 2018 12:05PM
Chris L - The external drive which I attempted to recover is a 1Tb drive and had, on the old PC registered around 600GB (figures are from memory as I didn't think I would need to know specifically). Lightroom is really only a tiny pin ***** in the whole of this and is best forgotten. I used File Explorer to try to discover what had happened. When I looked at the drive on File Explorer > Properties it was registering 35GB so I knew that there were files missing. They could have been anything - documents, video, music, photos - but Lightroom on my old PC did register 5000 more photos than the new PC. For some weeks I thought 'tough - so you've lost some stuff, not important'. But then I looked for a specific photo and couldn't find it., so I guessed that they were on the disc which I knew was not registering. I don't think any of that was the wrong decision, I knew that there was approximately 550 Gb of stuff missing - nothing whatsoever to do with Lightroom. I think using Recuva to find stuff was not a mistake and it did - find stuff. You should not assume that I am stupid! Unfortunately the notepad file was not saved but it was Japanese! I know the difference between Japanese, Chinese, and squiggles that some might mistake for Japanese.
Chris_L 6 5.5k United Kingdom
25 Feb 2018 12:37PM
You seem to know what you're doing Angie, will leave you to it Wink
Big Bri 19 16.6k United Kingdom
26 Feb 2018 9:41AM

Quote:You should not assume that I am stupid! Unfortunately the notepad file was not saved but it was Japanese! I know the difference between Japanese, Chinese, and squiggles that some might mistake for Japanese.


You should listen to people who are trying to help you. Binary files use bytes with every value from 0 to 255. Notepad is a text editor, and will interpret certain combinations of bytes as certain characters, but this is a complete red herring. Image files are not text files and can not be "translated into Japanese".


lobsterboy Plus
16 14.9k 13 United Kingdom
26 Feb 2018 9:52AM

Quote:Image files are not text files and can not be "translated into Japanese"


^^He's not wrong you know...but I feel there maybe some asumptions we are all falling for: The files bought back by recuvva may not have been image files but perhaps old text files/licence files, some of which could have been in Japanese?

Try changing the file extensions on some of the larger file to what you would expect (jpg, tif, raw) and see if it opens in photoshop.

26 Feb 2018 10:28AM
Tried that Lobster Boy - copied files then changed extension to the four that it might have been i.e. ARW, Tiff, PSD, or Jpg. None of them worked. The tip to open in Notepad (which I know is for text only!) was via someone on the web who had had a similar problem but when he opened the file in Notepad he found a 'Gif' marker which gave him a clue as to what the file was and was then able to open it. That is the only reason I tried it. Any port in a storm.

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