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Another Hidden New Lightroom Feature: Favorite Folder Search

Happy, Friday everybody!

Those of you that come here often, or have been to my live seminars, already know that I recommend a ‘collection-based’ workflow, but I also know a lot of you started with, and are still using a Folder panel based workflow. This tip is for those folks. It’s a new feature that Adobe added back in February in the Lightroom Classic 7.2 update, but it kind of slid in under the radar, so I wanted to make sure folks with a Folder-based workflow would know it was there, ’cause it can be really useful.

The ability to do a Text search for Folders in the Folder Panel, but…
…beyond that, you can also tag Folders you use a lot as “Favorites” and Filter your text search to just your Favorites. Here’s how:

STEP ONE: Go to the Folders panel; right-click (Mac: Ctrl-click) on any folder you use often, and choose Mark Favorite from the pop-up menu (as shown here).

STEP TWO: At the top of the Folders panel, right below the title bar, you’ll now find a text field where you can do a text search for Folders — it’s just the one that has been in Collections for a while now). By default, it will search all your folders, but if you click on the magnifying glass icon to the left of the text search field, a menu will pop up where you can choose to just search Favorite Folders (as seen above).

Above: Notice how the search field is narrowed when you choose “Favorite Folders.” Now the list of folders you’re searching through is very small — just those folders you marked as favorite.

NOTE: When you mark a folder as a favorite, Lightroom adds a little star to the bottom right corner of the folder icon (seen above).

Hope you found that helpful.

On Monday, I’m in Hartford teaching Lightroom…
…and a couple hundred photographers are already signed up to spend the day with me learning Lightroom like a boss. If you live up that way, or know a photographer who does, come on out and join me. (details and tickets)

After Hartford, it’s Salt Lake City
You can come out, too! (details and tickets)

After that, I’ll be teaching Lightroom for 3 days at the Photoshop World Conference in Orlando (May 31 – June 2) 
You can come to that, too! You’ll be learning from me, and Matt Kloskowski, Serge Ramelli, Lightroom Killer Tip’s own Rob Sylvan, Julieanne Kost, Terry White, and more! You’ll learn about Lightroom in three-days than you have in three years. Come and be a part of the world’s biggest Lightroom training event. Details and tickets here. 

Have a nice weekend, ya’ll. 🙂





  1. minh 16 November, 2018 at 04:23 Reply

    Thanks for the helpful article. Is there a way to use this during imports, so I don’t have to navigate through my entire computer’s folder structure to select the imported picture’s placement?

    Currently quite frustrated with Lightroom’s non-existing folder search optinos in the Import dialogue… or did I miss something?

    Thanks in advance! 🙂

  2. Matt O'Brien 4 May, 2018 at 06:20 Reply

    The ability to search for folders is welcome and long over due….. but …… but …

    The lag time between entering the text to search for and the result renders it useless and ….

    regularly my Lightroom app subsequently becomes unresponsive if I try this feature.

    In my case the number of folders to search is in total about 200 ….. To search this number should be milliseconds…. I can only assume Adobe are using a convoluted search thru the database with a pile of parameters. (Latest version of Win 64 bit with 32MB memory).

    I would use this a lot if it was effective, but for me it is just another buggy feature.

    • callmebob 4 May, 2018 at 10:19 Reply

      I’m on windows 10, 64bit and 24GB memory, 7.3.1. I have a couple hundred folders on a drive which I’ve imported from and which are displayed in the folders list . When I type any portion of a desired foldername, the list is dynamically updated to only include found folder possibilities – there’s virtually no delay at all. It may be somethign unique to your configuration doing this.

      • Matt O'Brien 4 May, 2018 at 14:48 Reply

        Thanks for the feedback. I will revisit in due course. I cannot think of anything in my hardware / software config which is non standard… It is a feature I would like to use…. but currently too painful..

      • Jonathan 20 May, 2018 at 02:04 Reply

        I don’t see a delay either. I use a Windows 7 with a x64 bit processor, 16 GB AM and with a side set of nVidia GeForce 630M. I know the graphics sucks but I can easily access it even when I;m running hundred other apps. It has to be the configuration. Try pulling some strings in the main settings.

  3. Paul 4 May, 2018 at 04:28 Reply

    That’s a useful tip but perhaps you know the answer to my quick question. Is there a keyboard shortcut to jump to the Target Collection? I have many many collections in the collection pane and the publish pane. Some in sub folders which are not necessarily always expanded out. The only indication that a collection is the Target is a brighter text label. A star like the favourite folder would help but also a keyboard or menu item to show the collection. Is it already there and I’m just not seeing it?

    • callmebob 4 May, 2018 at 10:10 Reply

      it also has a “+” at the end of its name. I went looking for a shortcut to make the target collection be what’s displayed in the filmstrip and never found one – maybe someone knows how to jump to it.

      • Rob Sylvan 4 May, 2018 at 15:30 Reply

        I am not aware of any shortcut to jump to it. The best alternative I can think of is to select a photo in Grid view, press the B key to add it to the target collection, then click the collection thumbnail badge (or right-click and use the contextual menu) to see what collection it is in and to jump to that collection. Press B with that photo selected to remove it.

        • callmebob 5 May, 2018 at 08:03 Reply

          So what you’re saying is you support a shortcut key that takes you there directly too ? 🙂 I opened an “idea” for feature add on feedback.photoshop.com for LR Classic..

          • Rob Sylvan 5 May, 2018 at 13:18

            Well, I went over and found your thread, voted for it, and was about to suggest a shortcut, when I thought, “how about I test that shortcut to see what happens,” and sure enough, it worked.

            Give CMD+B / Ctrl+B a try. Apparently it has been there all along, and I never ever thought to look. Thanks for sending me on this journey of discovery. I love when I learn a new Lightroom trick.

          • callmebob 6 May, 2018 at 09:19

            So poking around as Rob notes (I can’t reply to his) – CTRL-B (CMD-B mac) will change your filmstrip display to A) the quick collection or B) the target collection, if you have one defined. A second issuance will flip you back where you were before the 1st, which could be either a collection or a folder depending on how you’d set your filmstrip display….

          • Paul 23 June, 2018 at 09:22

            Thanks for the replies to my question gents. I did find the Cmd/B thing as well. It helps a bit but what I’d quite like it to also do is drill down to the collection in the appropriate place in the left hand module.

            I know the Target has a + indicator but in my opinion it’s at the wrong end of the collection name. I have some long collection names and the + disappears into the ellipsis…

            Adobe just added the auto stacking option to Pano and HDR so they do work to improve the UI. Fingers X’d

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