Migrating Your Lightroom Catalog and Photos to a New Computer

There comes giddy a time in every Lightroom user’s life when you will purchase a new computer. I’ve broken out the components you need to consider to get from old to new with a minimum amount of angst and a maximum amount of control.

Tutorial: Back Up Your Lightroom Catalog

Lightroom is often referred to as a “metadata editor,” meaning that the work you do in Lightroom isn’t applied to the pixels in the source photo, but rather is saved as a set of metadata instructions (inside the catalog file) that are only applied to copies of the source photo during any type of output. Everything you do inside Lightroom, from adding keywords to making tonal adjustments, is recorded into Lightroom’s catalog file.

Test Driving the Lightroom 4 Public Beta

OK, I’m sure you are curious about jumping into the driver’s seat and giving this new version of Lightroom a few laps around the block. There’s a lot of cool stuff in here, and if you have been using Lightroom for awhile you should feel very much at home, but there are a few things I want to mention before you go too far.

Tutorial: Reconnecting folders and photos in Lightroom

Another significant yet subtle improvement in Lightroom 2 is the means to reconnect missing and offline folders and photos. While preventing your photos from being inadvertently disconnected from the Lightroom catalog is still just as important as it was in Lightroom 1, it’s good to know there are tools to help you get things back in order if you find yourself looking at a catalog full of question marks.