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How To Move Your Lightroom Photos To Another Drive

In this video, Terry White has the answer to something a lot of Lightroom user have been struggling with, and this method makes it so simple.

In the first part of the video, he shows you the most common way people move their entire Lightroom image library from one hard drive to another (maybe you’ve outgrown the space on your laptop), but then he shows a much better way to make the move where Lightroom does all the work for you, all behind-the-scenes and everything just works! (the tip part starts around the 9:00 mark in the video, but you should watch the whole video from the beginning to fully appreciate why this is a such a great tip). Really so incredibly helpful!

A big thanks to Terry for allowing me to share this tip with you once again here on LightroomKillerTips. #terryrules

Hope you found this tip helpful. 🙂





  1. Laura 10 April, 2021 at 16:17 Reply

    Omg. Where to begin. I bought an ext hd . put pictures on it now missing links on both internal HD and ext HD. I don’t even know how to fix it. I just want to tart over. Put ext HD photos back on computer on internal HD. Have no idea where photos are stored for or. Help

  2. gary 22 December, 2018 at 20:53 Reply

    This was totally the wrong way for me to move my files. I purchased a larger drive. I copied all my folders to the new drive. If I followed the instructions starting at the 9:00 minute mark, it would take me hours to move everything. The best way to do it is, once you have your folders on the new drive (make sure the naming convention and folder names are identical). TURN OFF the old drive.

    Then start Lightroom. Open the catalog. When you see the folders with a question mark, right click and then find the new source. SO MUCH FASTER and easier than this video. Oh my. Not sure why you didn’t see it.

  3. Zip Boterbloem 1 November, 2018 at 10:59 Reply

    This method was a disaster for me(oct 2018, latest LR CC). I tried to move 25000 photo’s from a NAS volume to a locally attached disk with this method(just moving folders in LR CC), LR got stuck after about 9000 files. Basically, nothing happened overnight after the first 9000 files. The only way out was a force quit, and then files were missing from my source volume. Fortunately, I have an offsite backup.

    Moving all my photo’s(20 year’s worth) to one place and keeping my RAW edits stored in a catalogue is a nightmare.

    LR will stall, crash, or throw out edits if you’re not very careful, double check everything, and work with smaller batches(copied with rsync). That’s a tall order with a huge(35000) collection of photo’s dating back 20 years. Some of the photo’s may well be corrupted, but that’s no reason for LR to crash or stall.

    I have a powerful i7 6700k desktop computer with 32 GB of RAM, so I’m not trying all this on an obsolete Mac from 2008.

  4. MattS 5 March, 2018 at 11:41 Reply

    Well done Terry! Now I don’t have to try and tell others when asked, instead I’ll point them to your video which explains it all especially to those that never grew up using an OS file system – grin! BTW, don’t you think it’s time to get current vs using LR 5 ?

  5. jlua 5 March, 2018 at 04:58 Reply

    You mention that you keep your Lightroom Catalog on a DropBox folder. Can you please expand on that? Is there no problem on placing the Lightroom Catalog on a DropBox or OneDrive folder?

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